Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Dawn of the blackcap

Everyone is probably sick of hearing me drone on about the lack of migrants here in the desert, i know my wife and non birding friends are, so after openings the nets and returning to what i thought was going to be a relaxing half hour watching the sunrise, i was amazed to find my 30m net was rammed with birds. Its sited in the open between a eucalyptus tree and the pistachio plot where we ring, and usually catches a few birds early on as they move to the plot and then used as a demo net. 13 blackcaps had found their way into it, i realised then that this might be a good morning. i ringed the birds as quickly as possible. By the time I had finished 3 youngsters from the local junior school had arrived, we entered the plot to find the nets full, the kids kept running back to me saying theres 6 in the next net, 7 in the next. it took me nearly an hour to take the birds out, so i quickly closed the nets as i realised that i couldn't cope on my own with many more birds. there was a total of 62 new birds and 3 retraps, in just over an hour, with a staggering 51 new blackcaps! also the first garden warblers (4) and spotted flycatcher (1), the catch was made up of 2 olivaceous warblers, 1 collared flycatcher, 1 house sparrow, 1 ortolan bunting and the 100th lesser whitethroat of the season.

the catch was that good that when i woke at 6 this morning i decided to get out there again and
added 29 new birds and 6 retraps. Another 19 blackcaps, 6 olivaceous warblers, wryneck, wood warbler, thrush nightingale and the first barred warbler of spring.

Spotted flycatcher

Blackcap number 1000 for the site

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