Sunday, 23 March 2014

Ringing demo

This morning I had the pleasure of joining Jim, Geoff and Liz for a ringing demonstration for members of the Newark branch of Notts Wildlife Trust. The demo was at a site near Newark that Geoff and Liz have been ringing at for the past couple of months. The site has the potential for huge numbers of nets but given the volume of birds that are normally caught there, only three net rides were put up. The sky looked menacing when we arrived but soon cheered up to reveal beautiful blue skies and bright, bright sunshine (not a ringer’s best friend).

The first round produced a good number of birds and so did each subsequent round. The number and variety of birds caught kept the visitors interested and happy, as did the delicious breakfast rolls and cake provided by the very generous hosts. By mid-morning, the wind was beginning to cause a few problems and a sudden and sharp hail storm had us all running for cover into the ‘potting shed’. All but one net was furled, but this one still kept us busy.

The final total was 90 birds of thirteen species; goldfinch, greenfinch, chaffinch, yellowhammer, reed bunting, blue tit, great tit, long-tailed tit, lesser redpoll, robin, dunnock, blackbird and goldcrest. It was lovely to ring a redpoll again after such a long time without seeing one in the hand and I think I might have ringed more greenfinch today than I have in the previous six years of ringing!

It is always nice to ring on a new site and it was great to see so many different species in the hand in one day. Now, where can I find myself a site like that one… 

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