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Saturday 2nd April 2016

A cloudy start to the morning but then clearing up to be a bright sunny spring day. A few further signs of birds migrating through..

Birds on-site today came in the form of 6 Goldcrest, 5 Firecrest, 1 Redwing, 2 Long-tailed Tit, 1 Continental Coal Tit, 5 Chiffchaff, 2 Blackcap, 6 Meadow Pipit, 2 Skylark, 1 White Wagtail, 2 Wheatear, 1 Swallow, 2 Black Redstart (above picture), 4 Goldfinch, 5 Oystercatcher, 1 Curlew, 3 Cormorant, 2 Greylag Geese, 2 Brent Geese, 1 Marsh Harrier heading North and 1 Sparrowhawk.

Ringing: 11 birds ringed this morning including 5 Chiffchaff, 1 Firecrest, 1 Goldcrest, 1 Long-tailed Tit, 1 Great Tit, 1 Wren and 1 Blackcap.

Recent Ringing Recoveries

A Blackbird ringed here 28th October 2014 was killed by a cat 98km away at Chingford, London on 13th March 2016. A Med Gull ringed here 15th January 2010 was retrapped 78km away at Great Yarmouth on 20th December 2015. A Chiffchaff ringed here 18th March 2015 was retrapped 347km away in Alderney, Channel Isles on 20th March 2016. Finally a couple of Greenfinch ringed here on 28th June 2013 & 3rd August 2014 were killed flying into a conservatory window 8km away in Kirton on 23rd March 2016 - the moral of the story here is don't clean your conservatory windows !

Friday 1st April 2016

A rather cold, foggy and bleak start to the morning, but brightening up later on in the afternoon. A handful of new arrivals today and a few migrants.

These include - 3 Red-throated Diver, 7 Oystercatcher, 1 Curlew, 16 Cormorant, 1 Canada Goose, 1 Brent Goose, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Common Gull, 7 Firecrest, 5 Goldcrest, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 White Wagtail, 2/3 Continental Coal Tit, 2 Long-tailed Tit, 6 Meadow Pipit, 2 Goldfinch, 4 Brambling, 2 Black Redstart, 1 Redwing and 4 Rook.

Two individuals - White Wagtails showing nicely out on the nature reserve and the first for the spring for the observatory.

Ringing: 6 birds ringed this morning including 2 Firecrest, 2 Goldcrest, 1 Dunnock and 1 Continental Coal Tit.

March Ringing Totals

A grand total of 216 birds ringed in March consisting of 27 species. A slightly higher total than last year but very decent for the time of year and several early spring migrants ringed. Notable, includes the Reed Bunting (32nd ringed at the Obs) and a good passage of Redwing.

Blackbird  50 Wren  2
Redwing  39 Blackcap  2
Goldcrest  31 Willow Warbler  1
Chiffchaff 19 Black Redstart  1
Firecrest  15 Pied Wagtail  1
Song Thrush  11 Wheatear  1
Great Tit  8 Reed Bunting  1
Dunnock  7 House Sparrow  1
Chaffinch  6 Starling  1
Robin  3 Siskin  1
Blue Tit  3 Linnet  1
Long-tailed Tit  3 Sparrowhawk  1
Greenfinch  3 Woodpigeon  1
Grey Wagtail  3

Thursday 31st March 2016

A cold start to the morning, warming up in the afternoon produced a decent scattering of new migrants.

Another 2 new Continental Coal Tits on-site too.

New arrivals include c.12 Goldcrest, 6 Firecrest, 8 Chiffchaff, 2 Continental Coal Tit, 9 Meadow Pipit, 1 Redwing, 1 Wheatear, 1 Black Redstart, 1 Grey Wagtail, 10 Siskin, 2 Goldfinch, 6 Rook, 2 Jackdaw, 105 Woodpigeon, 8 Shelduck, 2 Oystercatcher, 2 Cormorant, 2 Little Egret, 1 Grey Heron, 6 Greylag Geese, 1 Canada Goose, 8 Common Gull and 1 Mediterranean Gull.

A nice surprise too this morning with a foreign ringed Goldcrest being caught, originally ringed somewhere in Brussels! Along with a 2nd controlled Goldcrest, (ringed somewhere else in the UK away from the Observatory). That's now the 2nd foreign ringed Goldcrest we've caught here in the last 7 months, after a Norwegian bird last Autumn.

Ringing: 24 birds ringed this morning and afternoon which included 9 Goldcrest, 6 Chiffchaff, 5 Firecrest, 1 Blackbird, 1 Chaffinch, 1 Wren and 1 House Sparrow.

Wednesday 30th March 2016

After the storms comes the warmer, sunnier conditions, which has made a big difference, as spring migrants started to appear this morning. Amongst the best was the first Willow Warbler of the year, along with its commoner cousin the Chiffchaff with at least 10 on-site, as well as 4 Wheatear, 2 more Firecrest, 1 each of Goldcrest, Swallow, Blackcap and Coal tit. 185 Woodpigeon went south along with 12 Meadow Pipit, a lone Rook, 9 Siskin and a Sparrowhawk, and a Jackdaw, Redwing and Fieldfare went north.

14 birds were ringed, 7 Chiffchaff, and 1 each of Willow Warbler, Blackcap, Firecrest, Goldcrest, Blackbird, Dunnock and Blue Tit.

Tuesday 29th March 2016

Slightly calmer winds today but still giving a cold feel to the place. A few new arrivals of note.

A nice record this morning in the form of this Reed Bunting, not a common bird here, being only the 32nd individual of this species to be ringed at the Observatory. Also, the first Blackcap of the Spring.

Migrants involved include 103 Woodpigeon, 4 Siskin, 2 Goldfinch, 1 Black Redstart, 2 Reed Bunting, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Coal Tit (Continental), 2 Firecrest, 1 Goldcrest, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Wheatear, 31 Meadow Pipit, 2 Redwing and 2 Rook.

Sea watching produced 15 Cormorant, 11 Brent Geese, 8 Greylag Geese, 6 Shelduck, 1 Grey Heron, 1 Little Egret, 3 Common Gull and 2 Oystercatcher.

Ringing: 3 birds ringed during the morning including 1 Blackcap, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Reed Bunting.

Monday 28th March 2016

What a lovely bank holiday Monday here at the observatory. As you can see it was a little bit wild here this morning and still is.. Plenty of mobile sand out on the nature reserve! Very little of note today due to the weather.

Notable sightings today include probably the earliest record of Sandwich Tern for the Observatory early am, along with 1 Woodpigeon that arrived with us, straight in-off the sea and 14 Cormorant battling the winds with 2 Shelduck and 1 Brent Goose.

On land, 1 Firecrest, 1 Black Redstart, 1 Chiffchaff and 1 Redwing.

Ringing: No birds ringed due to the weather.

Sunday 27th March 2016

As it's Easter here's a bunny waiting to be fed! Blowing a gale but that didn't stop the 1st Swallow of the year putting in an appearance. Also on-site today at least 5 Firecrest, 3 Black Reds, 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Redwing, Goldcrest & Woodcock but in this gale maybe more lurking than we can appreciate. Offshore movements almost non existent.

7 birds ringed: 4 Firecrest, 2 Chiffchaff and 1 Goldcrest.