Monday 31 August 2020

Stanwell Moor GP - 31st August 2020

We put up six nets behind the recycling works and hoped for something a little less usual from this site. Most of our efforts went into processing Blackcaps that made up over half of the catch. This session was the first without Garden Warbler and there was only one Whitethroat. We had a few Chiffchaff and no Willow Warbler. The bird of the day was undoubtedly a young male Redstart. The first for this and any Colne Valley Ringing Group site.

3M Redstart

Total: 72 (8)

Dunnock - 6 (2)
Robin - 4 (3)
Redstart - 1
Reed Warbler - 3
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Whitethroat - 1
Blackcap - 44 (3)
Chiffchaff - 11
Blue Tit - 1

Wraysbury GP - 27th August 2020

We worked Wraysbury today and while other groups are reporting catches in excess of 300 and out of the ordinary captures such as Wryneck, we continue to plod along with the usual and managed 86 birds. Garden Warbler numbers are now in decline while Blackcaps remain the bulk of the catch.
A ringed Willow Warbler BLD868 was not one of ours. Demon reports that the bird was ringed on August 5th this year. Less than 24 hours later we have a notification that the bird was ringed at Rowensgarth, Greens, Aberdeenshire.

3M Blackcap

Robin aged 3

Whitethroat juvenile

site panorama

Totals: 78 (8)

Dunnock - 0 (3)
Robin - 5
Reed Warbler - 1
Whitethroat - 8
Garden Warbler - 2
Blackcap - 48 (3)
Chiffchaff - 6
Willow Warbler - 1 (1)
Goldcrest - 1
Blue Tit - 4 (1)
Goldfinch - 2

Friday 21 August 2020

Wraysbury GP - 16th August 2020

We managed to fit a couple of hours in at the start of the day in anticipation of a few windy days during the coming week. A total of 49 birds were processed. This included five retraps, ringed no more than a couple of weeks before. There seemed to be few birds around despite reports of falls along the east coast. We decided that those may be continental migrants as opposed to birds from the UK. We noticed several trees down along the road skirting the lake, and later found out that there had been a 'mini tornado' through Wraysbury on Wednesday the 12th, with very heavy rain, hail the size of golf balls and strong swirling wind. There have been weather warnings about thunder storms in the UK over the last week. We wondered whether this had pushed many birds on, and had anything to do with the low catch both today and at Stanwell Moor on Thursday the 13th.

Totals: 44 (5)
Song Thrush - 1
Reed Warbler - 2
Lesser Whitethroat - 2 (2)
Whitethroat - 12 (1)
Garden Warbler - 8 (1)
Blackcap - 14 (1)
Goldcrest - 1
Blue Tit - 2
Great Tit -  1
Goldfinch - 1

Saturday 15 August 2020

Stanwell GP - 13th August 2020

On arrival we found that the grass and dry weeds from the bank had been cut and removed. This is probably a safety measure to avoid grass fires, but will no doubt deter birds with so much cover gone.  Grateful to be expecting lower temperatures than of late, we erected 5 nets and prepared for rain. At one point it was necessary to close nets and take refuge in the car for ten minutes, but the weather app was accurate and once that squall had gone through there were no further showers.

The site wasn't at all busy early on, with the only evidence of birds while setting up, being numerous Robins tacking from all the hedgerows. As the day drew on we also noted a couple of Kestrel, a Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk, but none of these found the nets. Warbler numbers and bird numbers in general seemed to have dropped, but we did get a couple of birds that had been ringed at Wraysbury C6. In the case of Garden Warbler APN0864 only two days beforehand. Whitethroat APN0618 was also ringed on C6 on 4th August. It seems odd that these birds have moved North at this time of year, but that may have been a result of the patchy heavy rain showers with thunder and lightening that have been bubbling up at very localised locations over the last couple of days. There was also a Garden Warbler with ring Z546765 not recognised as belonging to a local group. We await details.

Lesser Whitethroat


Totals: 35 (8)

Robin - 2
Dunnock - 2
Song Thrush - 1
Reed Warbler - 1
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Whitethroat - 6 (3)
Garden Warbler - 1 (2)
Blackcap - 20 (2)
Willow Warbler - 0 (1)
Goldfinch - 1

Tuesday 11 August 2020

Wraysbury GP - 11th August 2020

In a string of days where the temperature is reaching the mid 30s daily, we were putting up at 6am and taking down again before 10.30am. The first two rounds were quite busy, again tailing off very quickly as the sun climbed higher in the sky, beating down on ringers (our only shade here is that from the car) and birds alike, discouraging feeding forays into the open as birds sought out dark, shady spots within the vegetation.

We had a nice spread of species including Lesser Whitethroat and Willow Warbler also, the less frequently captured here, Chaffinch and Jay.

Adult Willow Warbler

Totals: 93 (8)

Dunnock - 1 (3)
Robin - 4
Song Thrush -  2
Reed Warbler - 2
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Whitethroat - 7 (3)
Garden Warbler - 15
Blackcap - 40 (1)
Chiffchaff - 3
Willow Warbler - 4
Blue Tit - 2
Jay - 0 (1)
Goldfinch - 9
Chaffinch - 2

Sunday 9 August 2020

Stanwell Moor GP - 7th August 2020

The forecast was for a very hot day so the early start gave us a chance to get a reasonable number of birds before the activity levels dropped. As we set up, there was a distinct autumnal air. We had erected six nets in about forty minutes, then settled down to a regular pattern of frequently checking, clearing nets and processing the catch. Whitethroat is still one of the most often captured species. Blackcap and Garden Warbler do not use this site as much as the close by Wraysbury but we still got reasonable numbers. A couple of Lesser Whitethroat were a welcome addition to the data.

Garden Warbler

Lesser Whitethroat


Total: 57 (4)

Dunnock - 4 (1)
Robin - 2 (1)
Reed Warbler - 3
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Whitethroat - 18 (1)
Garden Warbler - 6
Blackcap - 16 (1)
Chiffchaff - 2
Blue Tit - 2
Great Tit - 1
Bullfinch - 1

Friday 7 August 2020

Wraysbury GP - 4th August 2020

Five nets up today with an early finish due to rising temperatures as the morning drew on, causing a distinct drop in the numbers of birds moving about as a result. The species were pretty much as we'd expect at this time of year. One Blackcap provided some interest as it was noted that the claws were white rather than the usual colouration.

We are participating in the flat fly project being run by Dr D Wawman and a Robin provided the first sample that we will be contributing to the study.

Total: 75 (11)

Dunnock - 6 (1)
Robin - 1 
Blackbird - 1
Song Thrush - 1 
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Whitethroat - 15  (5)
Garden Warbler - 15 (2)
Blackcap - 25 (3) 
Chiffchaff - 4
Willow Warbler - 1
Blue Tit - 3
Chaffinch - 1

Tuesday 4 August 2020

Broadwater GP - 2nd August 2020

Over 80 birds processed between the Beatley and Lamsdell teams this morning, appropriately socially distanced as has become usual for these times.

The first bird processed by DKL was a recaptured Garden Warbler that was renewing some tail and tertial feathers. This bird had been ringed on the 24th July 2019 when accessed as an adult female.

S415333, a known 6, showing new central retrices and asymmetrical tertial replacement.

An adult male Nuthatch, a species not seen here until 2020

Table Beatley

Totals: 78 (7) 

Blackbird - 2
Robin - 3
Dunnock - 2
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Reed Warbler - 5
Sedge Warbler - 1
Garden Warbler - 2 (2)
Blackcap - 24 (4)
Willow Warbler - 4
Chiffchaff - 25
Nuthatch - 2
Treecreeper - 1
Blue Tit - 5 (1)
Great Tit - 1