Remarkable day’s ringing – Part 2 – Knot

Posted on - In North Lancs Ringing Group
In the previous blog posting I made reference to an article about Knot at Formby on the 22nd September. Here it is!The West coast of the UK, particularly Liverpool bay and Morecambe bay, are important areas for wintering Knot in the UK.  Additionally Liverpool bay hosts a large summer flock of second year birds.  A lot of Knot have been ringed on the West coast historically (1970s) however relatively few have been caught and ringed in August, September and April.  This leaves some gaps in our knowledge of Knot and in particular we have limited data after the period after their rapid decline in the 1980s.Knot have been worked on in the flyway for many years and from recent colour ringing studies some interesting things have been observed. Firstly in Winter birds colour marked on passage in Iceland, Norway and those moulting on...

Remarkable day’s ringing – Part 1 – Sanderling

Posted on - In North Lancs Ringing Group
Slightly out of the North Lancs RG area however a large team of ringers including many from North Lancs made a trip to the Sefton coast to ring and colour ring Knot as part of a study run from Norway looking at how Knot use the West coast of the UK to moult and winter and then to look at how this effects their migration route back up to Greenland and Canada to breed.  More on this project in part 2 which will follow in the coming weeks.While we specifically targeting Knot we also caught some Sanderling.  In the last decade under 10 Sanderling have been ringed in North Merseyside and Lancashire so any Sanderling caught will be interesting and add to our understanding of their movements.  Out of the 370 Sanderling we caught 45 were already carrying rings.  The bulk of these 45 are from ringing in North Wales around Rhyl wh...

North Lancs Ringing Group annual report 2014

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For the last three years North Lancs Ringing Group have produced annual reports.  The 2014 one can be found here:North Lancs RG annual report 2014Many thanks to everyone who contributed to the report and in particular to all the land owners who permitted ringing on their land.Previous reports are available here:North Lancs RG annual report 2013North Lancs RG annual report 2012...

The Sand Martin that went away… and came back

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Most years I will post something about a Sand martin being recaught in France, Spain, Senegal or Sussex.  These are always nice but of relatively little value beyond saying how quickly Sand martins leave the UK.  Incidentally for getting to France it's fairly quick with the first broods almost certainly heading south now and most juveniles being through France within a month of fledging. Just occasionally we have birds recaught more locally but on passage.  One such bird was D335186 which was ringed near Kirkby Lonsdale in June 2013 as a breeding male.  On the 25th July 2014 it was caught at Walney bird observatory, presumably fattening up for the migration to West Africa although could have been breeding closer to Walney in 2014.  On the 9th July D335186 returned to Kirkby Lonsdale at the same colony as it was in d...

A remarkable evening’s ringing

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As part of North Lancs Ringing Group's Sand martin Retrapping Adults for Survival (RAS) we are regularly catch Sand martins ringed in the UK and France.  Consequently the first two retraps in a recent visit being from the UK (Lune valley) and a bird from France were of no surprise. The next bird had a ring had an address of 'Icona, Madrid' which is our 9th from the main Spanish ringing scheme.  Amazingly the fourth retrap to be caught was carrying a ring was addressed 'San Sebastian, Aranzadi'.  This is the first Sand martin we have caught from the Basque ringing scheme in Spain and only the second bird the group has caught from it (the first being a Reed Warbler in 2010 near Heysham).While it is always nice to catch birds from elsewhere the RAS project is all about returning birds to their breeding sites.  As I have sai...

A tail of two Knot

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On a recent trip to the Wash as part of the Wash Wader Ringing Group's summer fieldwork activity a catch of Knot was made in Lincolnshire.  While the number of Knot retraps is always low due to the large numbers around and relatively small numbers ringed each year we did have around 1% of the catch as previously ringed on the Wash.  We also retrapped a bird originally ringed on the 14th February 1998 at Heysham, Lancashire. This kind of movement is exactly what we would expect from a wintering Knot at Heysham.  In autumn flocks of many 10s of thousand or even 100,000 form on the Wash where many moult before dispersing to estuaries around the UK and Northern Europe.While looking at the excellent BTO online recoveries page to see how many have been recorded making this movement before (90), I noticed a rather surprising mo...
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Sand Martin to Spain… and back.

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In September 2013 we had an email from the BTO to say one of our Sand Martins from the Lune had been caught in Spain just 39 days after we had ringed it as a juvenile near a colony on the Lune.  Last night this bird was back at the same colony as a breeding male.  This is at least the 3rd one of ours to be caught on migration or in wintering grounds before being retrapped on the Lune.  The previous two have been to Senegal and France.As the Sand Martin ringing is part of the BTO's 'Retrapping Adults for Survival' we aim to retrap individuals between years.  Last night had a total of 13 recaptures out of 93 Sand Martins.  These comprised of:2013 juveniles - 3 (including the one to Spain and back)2013 adults - 52011 juvenile - 1 (not seen since)2010 juvenile - 1 (recaught in 2011)We also had two British 'controls' and...

Godwit update

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Luckily there are no photos in today's report!  Since Saturday a total of 15 sightings of Godwit have been made at Leighton Moss of 12 individuals with a peak count of 2,100.  600 birds have also been seen at Condor which included at least two colour ringed birds.  These are certainly different individuals to those present at Leighton Moss.  I'll update the blog in a few days with a summary of the birds seen locally.On Saturday I predicted today was the day to see birds migrating.  When I arrived at the Allen Pools this evening it was clear the Redshank were more excited than yesterday and the numbers of Godwit had dropped significantly.  The noise from the 1,000 Redshank was incredible with constant calling and all the groups were jumpy.  This is part was due to disturbance however a lot was due to them b...
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