Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Oxwich Marsh & Crynant: early season highlights

Due to a very small catch during a mid week session at Oxwich, we decided to split the group across two sites. The majority went to Oxwich, with a smaller party heading to Crynant, in the Dulais Valley. 

The results are below:

Oxwich total

Species
Ringed
Recaptured
Total
Cetti's Warbler

3
3
Siskin
4
10
14
Goldfinch
6
1
7
Sedge Warbler
3
3
6
Willow Warbler
2

2
Grasshopper Warbler
2

2
Great Spotted Woodpecker

2
2
Reed Bunting
4
3
7
Dunnock
1
3
4
Long-tailed Tit
1
1
2
Lesser Redpoll
1

1
Wren
1
3
4
Snipe
1

1
Chiffchaff
2

2
Blackcap
2
1
3
Robin
1

1
Chaffinch
1
2
3
Lesser Whitethroat
1

1
Blackbird
1
1
2
Great Tit

3
3
Blue Tit
1

1
Greenfinch
1

1
Grand Total
36
36
72

Crynant Total

Species
Ringed
Recaptured
Total
Siskin
19
0
19
Goldfinch
1
1
2
Coal tit
2
1
3
Dunnock
1
0
1
Robin
2
0
2
Chaffinch
3
0
3
Nuthatch
0
1
1
Grand Total
28
3
31

The highlights at Oxwich were:
  • Our first lesser redpoll of the year. A second calendar year female bird.
  • Six sedge warblers, including returning birds initially ringed in 2016 (2) and 2017. One of these birds had not been retrapped since it had been ringed as a recent fledgling on 3 July 2016.
  • A goldfinch ringed on 1 March 2014. This bird was subsequently recaptured in 2014, but was not retrapped again until 2018 (and has now been caught twice this year).
  • A female reed bunting that was recaptured for the first time since it was initially ringed on 5 July 2014.
  • A wren initially ringed on 23 August 2014. This was the 6th recapture of this bird. It had a well defined brood patch, indicating breeding.
  • A lesser whitethroat. This was the first spring capture of the species at Oxwich since we began ringing at the site in February 2013. It was aged as a second calendar year bird on the basis of tail feather colour / characteristics. The iris, which is a good feature in the autumn, was not useful, as it was more similar to an adult than a first winter (as you might expect by now).
  • Two grasshopper warblers. We seem to capture a couple of birds in April in most years. Neither was carrying significant fat.
  • A late snipe. This was captured in a series of nets set for reed warblers (of which we caught none - despite singing birds nearby). Five snipe were flushed from the area on approach.
The highlights at Crynant were:
  • A good total of 17 new siskins, all of which had either a brood patch or a cloacal protrusion
  • A nuthatch first ringed on 28 July 2015 as a recently-fledged juvenile.
Thanks to the Oxwich team of Keith Vaughton, Edward O'Connor, Stephen Vickers, Joanne Conway, Kirsty Franklin, Claudia Allen, Richard Dann, Bethan Dalton and Amy Schwartz, and to the Crynant team of Heather Coats, Sarah Davies and Alex McCubbin.

Photos are below.

Owain Gabb
24/04/2017

An increasingly uncommon capture at Oxwich; a greenfinch (Richard Dann)

The second grasshopper warbler of the spring (Amy Schwartz)

The first spring lesser whitethroat at Oxwich (Richard Dann)

Lesser redpoll (Amy Schwartz)

The final snipe of the spring? (Richard Dann)

1 comment:

  1. Hi there, this seems like such an amazing group, is there anyway I can join? I have just moved to Cardiff to work as a Seasonal Ecologist. I used to work for the Wytham tit project in Oxford and for the Bird department at Jersey Zoo so I have had some experience with handling birds. My e-mail is lara.bates-prior@wsp.com

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