"Birds have been ringed in my parent’s garden in Quorn, Leicestershire, for some 60 years and this has provided us with a wealth of information on our local birds. The garden, which is 80 feet long and 40 feet wide, borders onto a mixed woodland called Kay’s Plantation. In 1991 I married and left Quorn for Hertfordshire and now only return to Quorn to visit family, usually over New Year on my father's birthday (20th March). During these periods I get a few hours ringing in while they are still sleeping.
|Ian's parents' garden in Quorn|
Prior to this latest capture, the oldest individual retrapped was 4 years 6 months old. Over the last few years my father had kept saying to me he thought the male Nuthatch was quite old, but no matter how hard I tried I couldn't catch it. Sunday 22nd March 2015 (whilst visiting my father on his 88th birthday) was a fine still morning and I decided to get in a few hours ringing in before church. One of the birds caught was a Nuthatch; an adult male with ring number TE27966. I immediately realised it was old, but not quite sure just how old!
|Nuthatch in the garden (not the record-breaker, who was camera-shy)|
The previous longevity record for Nuthatch was a bird ringed in the nest May 1964 (also in Leicestershire!) and killed by a cat in February 1973, making it 8 years 8 months old.