20 April 2012

Ringing at the Ringing Stone

While processing today's recoveries we came across an interesting report amongst the Greenfinches and Blackbirds. This consisted of a ring found on the Island of Tiree, Inner Hebrides, ironically 10 metres from a Neolithic monument called the Ringing Stone!

This stone is an erratic which was carried by glacial ice. This consists of light grey granodiorite which is much younger that the surrounding Lewisian rock of Tiree. If lightly hit with a stone it is supposed to ring like a large piece of iron. This is not however where we get our BTO rings from if you were wondering.

The ring belonged to a Common Gull that was ringed as a chick in June 1990 on Tiree a few kilometers from the Ringing Stone.

We thought it would be interesting to know how the reporting rate of Common Gull has fared over the years. The graph below is of all dead or dying birds reported to us in a particular year. The decline is partially due to the number of Common Gulls that have been ringed, which has fallen from over 3000 per year in the mid 1980s to under 2000 in recent years (see the online reports). The decline in the reporting rate of ringed birds is also partially to blame.

Thanks to Tommy Holden for the photo

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