So to the last of the three Forestry England woodland sites I ring at, after lockdown. I set most of my normal nets: 7 x 18m along the main track and 2 x 18m off one of the side tracks. It did have one very positive advantage: I could see all of my nets, bar the last 2 mentioned, from a single point and check for birds through my binoculars. It is, of course, true that the majority of birds were caught at the end of the furthest away nets, so I still got through a lot of walking.
It was cold at 5:00 this morning, and the sun didn’t really warm the day until about 9:00. There was plenty of birdsong, but not a lot of movement. By 11:00 I had only caught 17 birds. However, it was a worthwhile session, with my first Great Spotted Woodpecker juvenile of the year caught and ringed:
I also caught my second juvenile Marsh Tit of the year, hard on the heels from Saturday at Red Lodge. The list for the day was: Great Spotted Woodpecker 1; Great Tit 1; Marsh Tit 1; Dunnock 1; Robin 4; Song Thrush 1; Blackbird 2(2); Blackcap 1; Chiffchaff 2; Willow Warbler 1. Totals 15 birds ringed from 10 species, 2 birds retrapped from 1 species, making 17 birds processed from 10 species.
There was a lot of insect activity to take my interest in between birds. Emperor Dragonfly is a superb beast and I was lucky enough to see several of them during the course of the morning. There were plenty of butterflies around as well, mainly Meadow Brown, but plenty of Ringlet and a few fabulous White Admiral. The 10 year plan is for the establishment of a pond immediately adjacent to my ringing site: I cannot wait for it to be done! I am sure it will be an excellent addition to the sites biodiversity.
It got very hot at 11:00 and, as the birds just weren’t moving, I packed away and headed off site.