wos slogan

Latest Sightings.

HEN HARRIER (ringtail) - Westbury - Mike Smith Chiffchaff, Stonechat - Blakehill - Robin Griffiths ...
6 Little Egret, 56 Tufted Duck - Fonthill Lake - Mike & Angela Trew 9 Chiffchaff, Grey Wagtail,...
400 lapwing, 300 Golden Plover - South Newton - Bob Blamey 200 Lapwing - Middle Woodford - Bob Blam...
3 Lesser Redpoll - Tisbury - Andrew Graham
Brambling, 4 Reed Bunting, 15 Lesser Redpoll, Siskin, 40 Redwing, 15 Fieldfare, 100 Wood Pigeon, 300...
SHORT-EARED OWL, 400 Fieldfare, 7 Golden Plover, 300 Lapwing - SPTA east - Granville Pictor 200 Fie...
×

Notice

Lack of access rights - File '/images/2013sightings/crow.jpg'

17th August 2013 - Salisbury Plain (centre)

With Olly sleeping through his alarm, or not setting it properly, or deciding to sleep off his ringing visit to Icklesham, it was left to just my Dad and myself to get things done. After ringing 172 birds last week it looked odds on that we'd be quite busy again but just as we turned off the road onto the range track we hit thick fog which is always a killer to catching big numbers. However, we were suprised to flush 3 Wheatears off the track at the bottom of the valley where we have been catching all our recent Whinchats. Sadly we didn't get any of them but did manage another Whinchat and 2 Stonechats.

While still putting up the nets we caught 2 Sedge Warblers while it was still pretty dark which was just the start of an interesting morning's migration for this species. By 9 o'clock when the predicted high winds hit we had caught 20 which isn't far off our years average catch for this species at this site. Other highlights were another Tree Pipit, 2 Grasshopper Warblers and even 2 Lesser Whitethroats managed to make an appearance which has now crept us into double figures for the species this year, down from an average of 40 a few years ago. We also caught another Redstart which we have now caught on 8 consecutive visits to this site.

In all, 113 new and 10 retraps was a fair return for th morning. It would have been more if Olly had got out of bed. GD/PD

Swallow 4, Tree Pipit 1, Meadow Pipit 1, Wren 2(2), Dunnock 2(1), Robin 5(1), Redstart 1, Whinchat 1, Stonechat 2, Blackbird 2, Song Thrush 1, Grasshopper Warbler 2, Sedge Warbler 20, Reed Warbler 3, Lesser Whitethroat 2, Whitethroat 21(1), Garden Warbler 3(1), Blackcap 16(2), Chiffchaff 3(1), Willow Warbler 15, Goldcrest 1, Chaffinch 2, Goldfinch 1, Bullfinch 1(1), Yellowhammer 1

DSCF1683

10th August 2013 - Salisbury Plain

With extra friends joining us this morning in the form of Gary, Louise and Louise's Mum the pressure was on to catch some nice birds and get good numbers. Thankfully in terms of numbers this was the largest catch of the year so far and the number of quality birds was astonishing.

After the success of the bonus 'Whinchat' net from the other week we put it up again and managed a massive 6 Whinchats on the first net round. First bird of the morning however was a retrap Nightingale that we'd been trying to catch all year. It turned out it was originally ringed in 2010 and has been caught each year since. Soon after we caught our first new Nightingale of the year which was something of a relief and only 4 months overdue.

More Grasshopper Warblers and Redstarts followed and once things warmed up a bit the Tree Pipits started turning up but it was the common warbler species that were most numerous. With 25 new Willow Warblers and 47 new Whitethroats post breeding dispersal prior to migration is well underway. This was shown in the 8 Sedge Warblers caught, impressive for a chalk downland site. The one obvious species misisng from todays catch was however Lesser Whitethroat. While not common at this site we would normally expect to catch 5 or so each session this time of year. It appears that this species population has been massively reduced after last years non-breeding season.

In all we ringed 172 new birds and processed 13 retraps. An impressive total but fits well with the average catch on this site for the time of year. GD/PD/OF

Sparrowhawk 1, Green Woodpecker 1, Swallow 1, Tree Pipit 4, Wren 6(2), Dunnock 10, Robin 4, Nightingale 1(1), Redstart 2, Whinchat 7, Blackbird 1, Song Thrush 1(1), Grasshopper Warbler 2, Sedge Warbler 8, Whitethroat 47(2), Garden Warbler 7(1), Blackcap 28(2), Chiffchaff 5(2), Willow Warbler 25(1), Blue Tit 1(1), Chaffinch 2, Goldfinch 1, Linnet 2, Bullfinch 1, Yellowhammer 3, Reed Bunting 1

Whinchat study group

DSCF1678

DSCF1676

10th August 2013 - Swindon STW

 
Today was a training masterclass with Gavin out for his first ringing session, Ian from Oxford visiting working to become a trainer and three of our group trainees Simon, Paul and Sarah. An 03:45 start enabled us to get four wader nets up at the tanks in search of gulls or Green Sandpipers. 12 nets up for passerines provided a steady stream of birds with Chiffchaff and Blackaps in strong evidence. Star nets of the day proved to be the wader nets, we normally take these down at dawn but today we opted to leave them open for a few more rounds and they provided some great surprises and some really interesting handling experiences with another 6 Black Headed Gulls, 2 Jackdaws, a Starling that made Pauls day, a Crow and for me best of all two Stock Doves as we very rarely catch them.
 
The total of 99 new and 19 retraps was pretty respectable but still we haven’t ringed a single juvenile Blackbird yet this summer which is alarming. MP/PA/SW/SR/IL/GH
 
Chiffchaff 15 (5), Willow Warbler 4, Blackcap 13 (2), Whitethroat 7, Garden Warbler 2, Reed Warbler 9 (5), Sedge Warbler 1, Wren 6, Robin 8 (1), Dunnock 6 (1), Blue Tit 7 (2) ,Great Tit 4, Long Tailed Tit 2 (3), Bullfinch 1, Black Headed Gull 6, Carrion Crow 1, Jackdaw 2, Woodpigeon 1, Stock Dove 2, Starling 1
 
crow
 
stodo

5th August 2013 - Marlborough Downs

 
Today it was grey, then sunny, then it rained, then it was sunny, then it went grey, then it rained, then it went purple, then it was sunny. Then I went home.
 
In between all of this high quality weather I checked Tree Sparrow boxes for 4 hours and ringed another few broods; Normally the last eggs are laid on about 28th July but I am still finding newly laid clutches so the darn things are not letting me off the hook. Farmers have started harvesting rape and winter barley but had to stop as the rain flattened their crops. An early harvest brings the Tree Sparrow nestling season to an early close but this year looks like going the distance.
 
As the weather cleared I gave Paul the usual short notice and we met up at a small sewage works on the edge of the downs that has a thriving Tree Sparrow colony but also can be productive for Swallows. We are testing to see if we can catch Tree Sparrows in summer so this was the ideal opportunity. 3 adult Tree Sparrows were ringed along with 3 juveniles ringed as nestlings this summer but the House Sparrow that infiltrated our site wasn’t quite so welcome. Swallows were zipping around all over the place but cunningly evaded our nets until roost time when 18 popped in at the end along with a bonus Sedge Warbler, quite an unusual bird on the downs. All in all, quite a worthwhile little evening. MP/PA
 
Swallow 18, Tree Sparrow 3 (3), Goldfinch 2, Whitethroat 3, Sedge Warbler 1, House Sparrow 1

4th August 2013 - Swindon STW

 
After a frustrating week when it was either too hot, too wet or too windy we finally got out this morning before the wind got up mid morning. We set a conservative net set and were joined by our summer visitor Sarah and Karen a trainee from Welsh Wales. We got off to a good start with a specialist mist net set accounting for a control and 7 new Black Headed Gulls. 
 
Noticeable by their absence are any Blackbirds, Garden Warblers and Lesser Whitethroats. A catch of this size is quite low for this time of year and it feels that the season may be behind but also that many species have not had another good season but time will tell. MP, JN, SW, SR, KM
 
The passerine nets were steady if unspectacular giving the following totals:
 
Black Headed Gull 7 (1), Sedge Warbler 6 (3), Reed Warbler 6 (6), Blackcap 5 (1), Whitethroat 8 (1), Chiffchaff 8 (1), Willow Warbler 8, Blue Tit 5, Great Tit 1, Robin 4 (1), Wren 7 ,Long Tailed Tit 0 (1)
 

27th July 2013 - Salisbury Plain

A stunning mornings ringing with the first big catch of the summer containing lots of quality. Juvenile warblers made up a large proportion of the catch which was amply padded out by something of a Wren-fest.

A good few Grasshopper Warblers were singing while we were putting up nets in the dark. It soon became apparent why in daylight as large areas of prime grassland and scrub habitat has been severely burnt by the MoD firing flares during military exercises and setting the tinder dry grass alight. This had pushed quite a lot of extra birds onto my ringing area, but also will have killed many nestlings of all species that had not yet fledged.

With all the usual nets set up we put up a bonus net in the bottom of one of the grassy valleys and the first two birds it caught were Whinchats. These were later followed by another two and two Stonechats. We caught 3 of the Grasshopper Warblers and yet another Redstart. One of the last birds of the morning was a Tree Pipit which finished off a very productive morning of 130 new and 20 retraps. PD/GD/OF/AC

Stock Dove 2, Wood Pigeon 2, Green Woodpecker 1, Swallow 5, Tree Pipit 1, Wren 10(1), Dunnock 2, Robin 2(2), Redstart 1, Whinchat 4, Stonechat 2, Blackbird 2(1), Song Thrush 2, Grasshopper Warbler 3, Reed Warbler 1, Sedge Warbler 1, Lesser Whitethroat 1, Whitethroat 18(4), Garden Warbler 1, Blackcap 20(4), Chiffchaff 13(5), Willow Warbler 8(3), Blue Tit 6, Great Tit 3, Tree Sparrow 9, Chaffinch 1, Goldfinch 4, Linnet 3, Yellowhammer 2 

DSCF1668

24th July 2013 - Group Totals

Group totals up to mid-July for Matt. There will be 5-600 extra Tree Sparrow pulli to add onto whats here but not all the nest record details have been completed yet. GD

  Full grown Pulli Retraps Total     Full grown Pulli Retraps Total
Sparrowhawk 1 0 1 2   Reed Warbler 84 20 59 163
Water Rail 1 0 0 1   Lesser Whitethroat 13 0 6 19
Lapwing 0 3 0 3   Whitethroat 186 0 74 260
Jack Snipe 5 0 0 5   Garden Warbler 19 0 20 39
Snipe 16 0 0 16   Blackcap 243 4 58 305
Green Sandpiper 0 0 1 1   Chiffchaff 119 0 31 150
Black-headed Gull 4 0 0 4   Willow Warbler 124 0 34 158
Stock Dove 1 15 0 16   Goldcrest 24 0 4 28
Woodpigeon 22 4 6 32   Firecrest 2 0 0 2
Collared Dove 3 0 0 3   Spotted Flycatcher 0 5 0 5
Cuckoo 2 0 0 2   Long-tailed Tit 79 0 45 124
Little Owl 3 8 0 11   Marsh Tit 2 19 11 32
Tawny Owl 1 0 0 1   Willow Tit 2 8 8 18
Kingfisher 4 0 2 6   Coal Tit 93 0 125 218
Green Woodpecker 5 0 0 5   Blue Tit 290 203 262 755
Great Spotted Woodpecker 15 0 33 48   Great Tit 189 93 227 509
Skylark 6 0 0 6   Nuthatch 3 0 19 22
Swallow 16 71 0 85   Treecreeper 8 0 8 16
House Martin 21 0 0 21   Jay 8 0 1 9
Tree Pipit 2 0 0 2   Magpie 2 0 0 2
Meadow Pipit 12 0 6 18   Jackdaw 3 8 0 11
Yellow Wagtail 1 0 0 1   Rook 0 16 0 16
Grey Wagtail 1 0 1 2   Carrion Crow 0 4 0 4
Pied/White Wagtail 13 0 1 14   Starling 18 0 3 21
Wren 82 0 35 117   House Sparrow 123 1 13 141
Dunnock 135 0 142 277   Tree Sparrow 67 88 33 188
Robin 122 5 72 199   Chaffinch 374 0 79 453
Nightingale 0 0 6 6   Brambling 11 0 2 13
Redstart 12 0 0 12   Greenfinch 127 0 41 168
Whinchat 2 0 0 2   Goldfinch 176 0 60 236
Blackbird 123 5 91 219   Siskin 31 0 7 38
Fieldfare 7 0 0 7   Linnet 235 8 2 245
Song Thrush 26 0 19 45   Lesser Redpoll 131 0 40 171
Redwing 16 0 0 16   Bullfinch 64 0 30 94
Mistle Thrush 1 0 0 1   Yellowhammer 306 0 41 347
Grasshopper Warbler 26 0 6 32   Reed Bunting 86 0 51 137
Sedge Warbler 46 0 25 71   Corn Bunting 16 0 1 17
Marsh Warbler 1 0 0 1            
            Total: 4011 588 1842 6441

20th July 2013 - Salisbury Plain (centre)

Despite a rahter windy night and the forecast for later in the morning for more wind we decided to give it a go in the hope of catching more juvenile warblers. The first net round produced yet another Redstart as well as the usual net happy male Grasshopper Warbler. This time of year usually results in catching large number of juvenile Whitethroats but today we caught lots of 3J Chiffchaffs including a very young looking control. 

A nice juvenile Green Woodpecker was the morning highlight and was a ringing tick for trainee Andrew. As predicted, the wind was at hurricane force by 0830 which meant an early end to the morning which was a real shame as we had already got to 57 new and 13 retraps by that time. GD/PD/AB

Green Woodpecker 1, Swallow 3, Wren 7, Dunnock 1, Robin 3, Redstart 1, Song Thrish 1(1), Grasshopper Warbler (1), Lesser Whitethroat 1, Whitethroat 7(2), Garden Warbler 1(1), Blackcap 7(4), Chiffchaff 10(2), Willow Warbler 3, Great Tit 3(1), Tree Sparrow 4, Linnet 1, Bullfinch (1), Yellowhammer 3

DSCF1662

Copyright © 2017 Wiltshire Ornithological Society. Registered Charity no 271033. Website by Mindvision