Friday, 22 August 2014

What a fantastic days ringing

We were all up this morning at 3.00am which for the duration of our holiday will become the norm. The ringing site is on the waterfront of the Varanger Fjord and we got on site at about 3.30am, nets were soon up and we were ready to go. The first round was slow and from then on every round got better and better. The total for the day was 317 birds across 18 species. The best part of all this was the satisfaction that we coped with ringing all the birds and fully processing them with all the necessary biometric data. We all remained friends afterwards considering there was a lot of pressure to keep up with the constant influx. I am informed that in previous years there has been in excess of 400 birds but todays was far above average on previous results.

The breakdown of species is as follows:
Willow Warbler 56, Common Redpoll 23, Fieldfare 3, Redwing 9, Meadow Pipit 35, Bluethroat 43, Reed Bunting 93, Red Throated Pipit 2,  Brambling 20, Greenfinch 7, Great tit 12, House Sparrow 2, Little Sting 1, Siberian tit 1, Blue Tit 1, White Wagtail 1, Lapland Bunting 7, Redstart 1. The highlights for the day being the Siberian Tit and the Little Stint for the group. On A personal basis the Lapland Bunting was again a new bird for me and I got to ring and process 2 of them.

The weather today was cool first thing and by mid morning we were enjoying sunshine at about 12 degrees centingrade, very warm for the Arctic.

This is the harbour in Nesseby, about 400metres from the ring site. When the sun comes out everywhere looks stunning.

Siberian Tit, in many ways looks so similar to the Willow Tit in the uk. Not a common bird by any means but  the group thought that we should catch a few before returning home.

My first Lapland Bunting - the key features such as pink bill, chestnut greater coverts, long wings and overall a chunky feel really helped me when we caught the other 6. I was even able to identify them by feel in the bag.

Forecast for tomorrow looks good. Will it be Mipit heaven or Reed Bunting redemption, only tomorrow will tell.

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