Sunday, 23 September 2012

This week we have been mostly...

.... ringing birds, despite the paucity of postings on the blog might suggest!.
Vaf, with Dr V, has been busy showing Cardiff University students the joys of birds and bird ringing during a field course, catching an average of 0.4 birds per student. On Friday he jetted off to Portugal for some PhD field work with his family.
CJ and Facey head out to test the water for wader season. It proved to be a fruitful exercise; in 5 seconds of the sounds going on, five redshank were in the net. It genuinely happened that fast! At the end of play 23 redshank and a dunlin had been ringed, with at least another 9 RS bouncing.
Facey and Pliers Morris headed to the Bay on Saturday for a bumper catch of 8 birds. The mix was good though with a Reed Warbler, Whitethroat and a Blackcap on the list.
Later, the pair headed to the stables for the last RAS catch of the 2012 season. Three of the four birds caught were retraps. Among them was this fella who, while his misses just re-feathered her brood patch, has decided to start his wing and tail moult - with a touch of body moult too. The inner two primaries have already been replaced and his inner most tail feathers were in pin. X558872 was first recorded at the stables last year in mid September, in the same stable.

Yes, not the best photo by you can make out the two new blue inner most
primaries contrasting with the old brown outer primaries. They usually do moult
in Africa but occassionally birds decide to start earlier. For another example

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