Friday, 20 November 2015

Oxwich Marsh 31 October 2015 & early November at Overton: a new species for the group

After a few weeks where personnel have been limited by holidays and other commitments, we had a good turn out for a session on 31 October.  Since this time activity has been fairly limited due to weather, although Cedwyn has managed a couple of trips to Overton.  Our combined efforts are summarised below.

Oxwich
The weather conditions were fairly good at Oxwich on 31 October, with a moderate south-easterly wind that gradually lessened over the course of the morning.  We nevertheless limited our netting to a couple of 60 foot nets on a raised bund (where we have been successful of late catching redwings), a few forty foot nets on the edge of some wet rush-dominated meadow (which caught more dor beetles than birds), and nets through some damp scrub and around the feeding station.

The results were as follows:

Species
New
Re-trapped
Total
Great Spotted Woodpecker
1
0
1
Wren
3
1
4
Robin
0
1
1
Blackbird
0
2
2
Redwing
11
0
11
Chiffchaff
3
0
3
Goldcrest
12
0
12
Coal Tit
0
1
1
Blue Tit
17
24
41
Great Tit
1
10
11
Nuthatch
0
1
1
Chaffinch
4
5
9
Greenfinch
18
13
31
Goldfinch
14
7
21
Total:
84
65
149

The number of redwings trapped at Oxwich was undoubtedly influenced by the high wind speed. Large scale movement of redwing was noted over the morning.

A new great spotted woodpecker was unusual for the time of year, and the other features of the catch were the three chiffchaff (all of which were very obvious collybitas), the continued good number of goldcrests and a reasonable haul of the usual finches.

Overton
Overton Mere is an area of rocky shore with a pebble storm beach (and usually extensive areas of strandline wrack) which typically holds good numbers of pied wagtails, rock and meadow pipits at high tide (when they become concentrated on the upper shore).

Following a few sessions with very little success, recent efforts have been more positive and nine rock pipits have now been captured.  The intention is to repeat the exercise at intervals over the winter.  If we have sufficient success, it may be feasible to run a Re-trapping Adults for Survival (RAS) project or work with Swansea University on a research project involving colour-ringed birds.

Some pictures are below:

Rock pipits (Darren Hicks)

Rock pipit (Darren Hicks)

Rock pipit (Emma Cole)

Rock pipit (Emma Cole)

Thanks to all who have made it to recent sessions: Paul Aubrey, Darren Hicks, Valerie Wilson, Heather Coats, Keith Vaughton, Charlie Sargent, Suze Lewis and Emma Cole.

Owain Gabb & Cedwyn Davies
20/11/2015

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