Every year we receive a few reports of late broods in September and October. However this year, we seem to be getting ten times as many! Even now in October, House Martins and Swallows are still feeding their young in the nest. Surely such late fledging must be costly for post juvenile survival- especially during their migration back to Africa!
However, it's not just Hirundines which have been making the most of the mild weather. Redpoll, Meadow Pipit, Goldfinch, Blackbird and Bullfinch are just some of the species which have continued to breed late on in the season. BTO ringers have reported an incredible number of young birds still undergoing their post juvenile moult.
The BIG question- Is this an abnormal year or will climate change make this a more regular occurrence?
Thanks to all BTO nest recorders and ringers, and thanks to John Harding for the photo.