Poor old Gilbert is getting restless. Despite the fact that there is more interest in wildlife than ever before, it seems that most of the so-called conservation organisations are losing interest in species. Instead they prefer to babble on about landscape scale conservation and ecosystem services (whatever they are). Could this be because most of their staff don't have any knowledge about species if they don't have four legs?
This is my attempt to encourage an interest in good old-fashioned natural history.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Life in the fast lane too hot to handle for Reed Buntings

The inaugural meeting of Team Eco-chick took place at Papercourt Marshes on 26th February and involved ringing Reed Buntings at roost. One of the Reed Buntings was already ringed and details have been received today. It was ringed on 27th January 2008 just 5km away at the Mclaren Technology Centre. This is where the Formula One cars are developed and tested but clearly consorting with the likes of Jensen Button was too much for this Reed Bunting and he opted for a quieter life at Papercourt.

Details were also received of a couple of Lesser Redpolls. In the winter of 2010/11 there were thousands of Redpolls on the heaths of Hampshire and West Sussex but this winter there were virtually none. So where did they go this year? Details of birds that I ringed during winter 2010/11 that have been recaught during the last winter are:
Calf of Man Bird Observatory (Isle of Man) on 27th October - presumably still heading south
Chobham Common (Surrey) on 5th November
Copeland Bird Observatory (Northern Ireland) on 13th October - presumably still heading south
Icklesham (East Sussex) on 1st November - probably on migration
Shotley (Suffolk) on 30th October
Dukes Warren (Surrey) on 21st November

Plus the two received today:
Wisley (Surrey) on 6th March
Santes, Nord Region (France) on 2nd November

It is interesting that none of these were re-caught during December to February so we are none the wiser as to where they wintered this year.

Spent a few hours this evening in the New Forest reading colour rings on Wood Warblers. None of the males sang during the whole time I was there; presumably still struggling to feed so not bothering to defend their territories. The highlight was finding the funky longhorn beetle Rhagium mordax on a beech trunk.

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