Monday, 3 March 2014

Fortunes of Fieldwork

A sunny St David's Day jaunt around the study site as part of the BTO's Winter Thrushes Survey provided the perfect opportunity not only to see some winter thrushes but also to re-sight some of our birds. Both turned out to be a bit of a success; not only did we see all the species of thrush that make their UK the home in the winter, including over 180 redwing, but we also saw six our birds! 

One was Orange over Yellow (O/Y); one of the birds ringed under our new marking system. O/Y hasn't moved far since we marked him but it was good to see him. 

AB is a bird we are always pleased to see as he was the first bird marked by the project when it started in April 2012. He was at least two calendar years old then, making him at least four years old now.
Our man AB - the first bird ringed for the Cardiff Blackbird
Project is still going strong three years 
As for the others:
AH - put in another appearance this year
BT - only the second time we have seen this bird since he was ringed in 2012
FH - this was the first time he has been seen since 2012

As we have now entered out RAS period these six birds will count towards are breeding season survival analysis. 

Its safe to say that we saw a good number of blackbirds on our Winter Thrushes Survey, 36 in total. Each of the yellow dots on the image below represents a blackbird registration but a dot might be more than one bird. Take the four western most dots which combined represent 10 birds! We've seen this number or more there on a number of occasions. 

Each yellow dot represents a blackbird sighting, and might represent 1-5 birds.
So it seemed a safe bet to head there on Sunday morning for a bit of an impromptu catching session in the hope of adding more birds to the project. After two hours we packed up having seen only two blackbirds 100m away, and nothing in the nets! The fortunes of fieldwork!

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