Welcome to the LDV NNR ringing blog, this blog is designed to share the experiences, findings and tales from a group of dedicated ringers. We specialise in conservation orientated research projects, largely focusing on wildfowl, waders, owls and birds of conservation concern, in and around the Vale of York NNR's.
NB - Whilst the purpose of this blog was initially designed to cover our nationally important wildfowl ringing activities, regular readers may have noticed the increase in posts detailing wildlife found across the valley (ranging from plants, fungi, butterflies, dragonflies & other invertebrates). Ringing posts will hopefully resume over the winter months, and will run alongside wildlife and work posts.
Thursday, 19 July 2012
Monday, 16 July 2012
This is our 126th Shoveler (122 ducklings, 4 adults) to be ringed in the valley, but thanks to the WWT this is the first to be colour-ringed, which we hope will be re-sighted and add to our existing knowledge of Shoveler duckling movements. A number of recoveries from metal ringed birds have already come our way - out of a brood of two ducklings ringed in 2004, both birds made their way to Russia where they were recovered in 2005, and in 1997/98 two ducklings from the valley were recovered in France - see previous post for more details - Shoveler(ly) good.
Tuesday, 10 July 2012
The ringing that we have been able to do has largely been based around the nest box project. Good numbers of chicks have been ringed (Barn Owls and Kestrels inparticular), however a few broods have been lost due to the flooding, which is unfortunate but still useful data for the nest record scheme. Several areas that are usually not prone to flooding have done so this year, leaving the Barn Owls struggling to hunt because of all the excess water which is covering their hunting grounds. Since starting the nest boxes in May, we've now ringed 86 Barn Owls for the year, the majority of these being chicks.
Kestrels have had a very successful breeding season, with most pairs fledging atleast two to four young. 37 Kestrels have been ringed (all chicks) since the start of the breeding season, and we've done most of them at the right time for sexing which has provided an extra insight into their productivity.
Also from the nest boxes/natural nesting sites we've had quite a few Jackdaws (6 ringed this month, 14 for the year), Tawny Owls (4 ringed this month, 15 for the year), and Stock Doves (2 ringed this month, 4 for the year). Early on in June Craig also managed another flick netting session one evening after work, and came away with 16 Swifts, making that 43 for the year now.
Friday, 6 July 2012
Monday, 2 July 2012
The photograph below is a really good example of the difference between the sexes, even at such a young age the difference between females and males is clear. The female (left) is darker grey on the wing, the male (right) is much paler.
On the inside wing of the female we could already see the black spots - another characteristic to look for.
The majority of the boxes have been covered now, with the sites left to the last the ones thought most likely to be un-used due to previous years, and so for our last day of box checking we were pleasantly surprised to find 3 more broods of Kestrels - all of different ages which was interesting to see. The other boxes checked were either empty, taken over by Pigeons or the boxes no longer exist - a job for the autumn!