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Saturday 2nd May 2015

Not a care in the world, this baby Rabbit seems oblivious to the dangers of being above ground for the first time in its life.

With the wind still coming from a cold direction, nothing much seems to be turning up, so very little again to report (hence the fluffy bunny picture). Just 7 Wheatear on-site along with 6 Common Whitethroat and 4 Lesser Whitethroat, whilst offshore very small numbers of birds including 3 Whimbrel and 5 Bar-tailed Godwit, along with small numbers of Common Terns plodding through.

Only 3 birds were ringed, 1 each of Dunnock, Common Whitethroat and Goldfinch, plus a controlled Robin.

Friday 1st May 2015

A chilly start and a north easterly wind wasn't what we were hoping for on May 1st, but a small scattering of migrants appeared at dawn. Thick cloud may have helped.

Migrants included 2 Blackcap, 8 Wheatear, 1 Common Redstart (Male), 4 Common Whitethroat, 3 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Yellow Wagtail with one presumed 'Blue-headed race', 7 Common Tern, 4 Little Tern, 1 Little Egret and 4 Whimbrel.

The resident House Sparrows are getting very broody now out on the nature reserve, the male proclaiming his territory and breeding site.

The moth traps were rather deprived of moths due to the rather cold night.

Ringing: 11 birds ringed during the morning including 4 Linnet, 3 Wheatear, 1 Dunnock, 1 Willow Warbler, 1 Common Whitethroat and 1 Lesser Whitethroat.

April Ringing Totals

A total of 410 birds of 27 species were ringed during the month. We had a decent spring passage and with 264 birds ringed last year in April, this year has been rather productive.  

Woodpigeon  5 Robin  13
Collared Dove  1 Black Redstart  1
Sparrowhawk  1 Common Redstart  2
Blackbird  14 Wheatear  20
Song Thrush  12 Nightingale  2
Chaffinch  4 Goldcrest  5
Greenfinch  9 Firecrest  7
Goldfinch  8 Willow Warbler  47
Linnet  49 Chiffchaff 71
Blue Tit  5 Blackcap  81
Great Tit  8 Garden Warbler  4
Long-tailed Tit  1 Common Whitethroat  15
Wren  11 Lesser Whitethroat  7
Dunnock  7

Moth trapping has been decent with a grand total of 222 moths of 26 species. Lets hope for warmer weather soon.

Thursday 30th April 2015

Continuing south westerly winds throughout the day produced several new migrants in-and-around the observatory and a few nice waders. These included 1 Nightingale, 1 Brambling, 6 Common Whitethroat, 3 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Blackcap, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Willow Warbler, 13 Wheatear, 7 Yellow Wagtail, 7 Whimbrel, 11 Grey Plover, 13 Common Tern, 1 Little Tern, 8 Sand Martin, 1 House Martin, 21 Swallow and 25 Goldfinch.

On the nature reserve, out of the 20 Wheatears that have been ringed during April, most of them have been of the Greenland race which is determined through our biometric data, based on wing lengths and overall size of our birds. It's a fair old hike for them if and when they migrate to Greenland.

Ringing: 7 birds ringed during the morning which included 1 Nightingale, 1 Robin, 1 Common Whitethroat, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Blackcap, 1 Linnet and 1 Wheatear.

Wednesday 29th April 2015

Strong south westerly winds overnight continued throughout the morning and during the rest of the day. Spells of heavy rain early afternoon. At dawn, several migrants had dropped in overnight. Migrants included 3 Common Whitethroat, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Female Common Redstart, 7 Wheatear, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 6 Willow Warbler, 2 Blackcap, 4 Swallow, 11 Common Tern, 2 Whimbrel, 8 Dunlin and 3 Tufted Duck.

There's plenty of Shelduck out on the nature reserve at the moment, here's a 'parliament' of Shelduck seen today.

Ringing: 15 birds ringed this morning including 7 Willow Warbler, 2 Linnet, 2 Common Whitethroat, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Blackcap, 1 Greenfinch and 1 Dunnock.

Tuesday 28th April 2015

The overnight westerly wind and patches of cloud produced a scattering of migrants around the observatory today. Migrants included 4 Blackcap, 1 Garden Warbler, 3 Willow Warbler, 1 Chiffchaff, 3 Common Whitethroat, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 5 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Tree Pipit, 6 Common Tern, 3 Sandwich Tern, 4 Little Tern,  18 Whimbrel, 1 Little Egret, 1 Common Redstart, 11 Wheatear, 2 Swallow, 1 Marsh Harrier, 2 Barnacle Geese and 1 Sanderling (see above).

Ringing: 16 birds ringed this morning including 4 Wheatear, 4 Linnet, 3 Blackcap, 2 Willow Warbler, 1 Common Whitethroat, 1 Garden Warbler and 1 Common Redstart.

Monday 27th April 2015

At dawn this morning it was evident that most of yesterday's migrants had cleared off the site and moved on elsewhere. However, there were still the odd birds scattered about.

13 Swallow, 33 Common Tern, 2 Sandwich Tern, 2 Whimbrel, 1 Rook, 2 Jay, 1 Reed Warbler, 1 Male Whinchat, (see above picture), 5 Common Whitethroat, 4 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Blackcap, 2 Yellow Wagtail and 15 Wheatear were still hanging around the observatory and nature reserve.

Very quite elsewhere and even the moth traps were rather quiet.

Ringing: 16 birds ringed during the morning including 7 Wheatear, 4 Linnet, 2 Blackcap, 1 Chaffinch, 1 Goldfinch and 1 Common Whitethroat.

Sunday 26th April 2015

Overnight spells of light and heavy rain, north easterly / east north east winds produced a decent arrival of migrants in-and-around the observatory throughout the day.

Migrants included 3 Serin, (2 male & 1 female) - the largest group we've ever recorded here. 1 Tree Pipit, 12 Common Whitethroat, 4 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Lapwing, 1 Common Redstart, 1 Nightingale, 4 Chiffchaff, 12 Willow Warbler, 8 Blackcap, 2 Garden Warbler, 6 Yellow Wagtail, 2 White Wagtail, 16 Wheatear, 9 Whimbrel, 1 Little Gull, 47 Common Tern, 4 Whinchat, 1 Sand Martin and 3 Swallow.

Also, 2 Mediterranean Gulls, 1 Bar-tailed Godwit, 13 Dunlin and 2 Brent Geese.

Ringing: 33 birds ringed today including 9 Willow Warbler, 7 Blackcap, 6 Common Whitethroat, 3 Song Thrush, 2 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Garden Warbler, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Sparrowhawk and 1 Common Redstart.