28 April 2011

Migrant Misfortunes in April

With the mass exodus of the winter migrants just about over and with most of 'our' birds settling down to breed, its time to look forward to all the summer migrant recoveries. This afternoon Dave Leech was ecstatic with his discovery of 2 Blackcap nests and we have also been receiving a few recoveries of this species as well. This includes a Blackcap ringed at South Foreland, Kent on 2nd Oct 2010 which was caught by a ringer at Litcham, Norfolk 11 Apr 2011 (181km in 191 days).

Chiffchaff have been doing well for reports, with 7 birds so far this month, 4 of which died when they hit windows. Another was very unlucky when it was hit by a car at Great Bowden, Leicestershire on 20 Apr 2011, after being ringed at Abbotsbury Swannery, Dorset in October 2010 (236km in 200 days).

We received a report through www.ring.ac on 17th April concerning an unidentified bird being found freshly dead at Skipness, Knapdale. This turned out to be a recently returned Manx Shearwater which was ringed at Copeland Bird Observatory, Co Down in 2003. The distance between these two sites is 120km but this bird travelled considerably more, since they winter off the coast of Argentina every year.

A look at some other reports of interest reveals a rarely ringed Ring-necked Parakeet which was found on the M4 after being hit by a vehicle, also found on the 17th April. This bird was ringed 10km away at Molesey Lock, Surrey. There is also a cracking recovery (although unfortunate for the bird) of a Pochard (red pin below), being shot in Bezenchuk, Samara in Russia (3290km in 486 days). A Woodcock (blue pin below) was also shot but this time in Belarus after being ringed in 2006 at Stowmarket, Suffolk (1830km in 1568 days).

View Pochard and Woodcock Recoveries in a larger map

Note these are recent reports and haven't yet gone through the checking process.
Thanks to Dawn Balmer for the Chiffchaff picture.

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