25 April 2016

Ringing demo and the first chicks to ring

This weekend saw the annual Cornwall Wildlife Trust wildlife celebration at Trebah Gardens, where the ringing demonstration is one of the highlights (allegedly). Over 2,500 people came along last year so it's a great event to get the word out about what amazing wildlife we have in the county. This year was a bit quiet bird-wise, but we did still manage to show people a range of birds, including Nuthatch, Chiffchaff and Coal Tits.

We also run a couple of walks checking what's happening in the nestboxes, but with the event being much earlier than previous years that was a bit quiet as well! Instead we taught people how to find open-nesting species and even show them Robin and Song Thrush feeding chicks and the Robin nest below on five eggs. Everyone seemed keen to get home and look in their own nestboxes, so hopefully there will be a rush of Nestbox Challenge registrations soon...

Away from Trebah, the weekend saw us ringing the first chicks of the year, but in quite different places! Saturday saw us ringing the first of our Dipper broods in Idless Woods, with five chicks being a pretty good start!

Sunday was an all-together more adventurous evening, as we paddled over to Mullion Island to ring a few Cormorant chicks. We timed it perfectly, with the biggest birds not so big that they were all running around, with seven broods with chicks big enough to ring. Cormorants are very asynchronous and some birds were still incubating eggs, and there were also many chicks that were still too small to ring. But we did manage to ring and colour-ring 15 birds, which compares pretty well to previous years (11, 19 and 7 in 2013-15).

The timing of the trips over is also variable, with this visit being earlier than the last couple of years: previous ringing trips were on 6th April 2013, 17th May 2014 and 7th May 2015. It did mean that we weren't able to count the Great Black-backed Gull nests, as most were just at the building stage. In fact, we only found two nests with eggs in, with two in each, so may have to plan another trip over to count these.

No comments:

Post a Comment