10 February 2012

Belgian Surprise

Orchards are great sources of food for our wintering birds, and also ringing opportunities for ringers. The North Notts Ringing Group was doing just this yesterday, ringing in an orchard. They were mist netting thrushes before the snow started to fall.

They managed to catch 450 birds, with a large proportion being Fieldfare (217 birds). There were also 177 Blackbirds, 15 Redwing and 3 Mistle Thrush caught, along with some other smaller passerines. Unfortunately there were no controls in this catch apart from one, a Blackcap wearing a Belgian ring!

In the last 3 years we have had eight reports of Blackcap being found in this country in January or Feburary. Discounting all of the birds that were ringed originally in the UK, one was from Germany, one from the Channel Islands, two from The Netherlands and four from Belgium. In the past, these Blackcaps might not have survived to migrate back to their country of origin, but due to the recent trend of relatively mild winters and increased garden feeding, these blackcaps are more likely to survive and return to their home country to breed. This increases the population that are 'programmed' to travel to the UK and Ireland for the winter. Hopefully, we will see more continental ringed blackcaps caught here during the winter months.

Thanks to Mark R Taylor for the photo and to Adrian Blackburn for letting us know.

1 comment:

  1. Salut, ce qu'est un blog web grand. J'ai l'habitude de passer des heures sur les blogs de lecture nets sur divers sujets. Et, je tiens vraiment à vous féliciter pour l'écriture d'un article fabuleux. Honnêtement, je crois qu'il ya une compétence à écrire des articles que seuls possèdent très peu et oui vous l'avez obtenu. C'est très instructif et je vais à coup sûr se référer mes amis la même chose. Merci.
    Or Guernesey chèvres