Christchurch Harbour Ringing Station – Ringing News 2012


September 13th

A chilly start at the HHC gave a very autumnal feel to our surroundings. The reed-bed gave up still more juvenile Sedge Warblers whilst the scrub yielded several Chiffchaffs. An early capture in the reed-bed turned out to be a Meadow Pipit. The final total was 45 birds as follows:- Sedge Warbler 27,Reed Warbler 2,Chiffchaff 11,Meadow Pipit 1,Willow Warbler 1,Blackcap 2 and a single Long-tailed Tit. Thanks to Elaine & Jenny for their help today.

Meadow Pipit HHC Sept 2012 – Kevin Sayer

September 12th

An early surprise was a Yellow Wagtail which was caught exiting it's roost. Sedge Warblers are still coming through along with an increasing number of Chiffchaffs. However, sylvia warblers are a lot fewer than normal but there is still time for them to come through. We managed a catch of 36 birds as follows:- Blackcap 1,Chiffchaff 6,Cetti's Warbler 1,Wren 1,Whitethroat 1,Sedge Warbler 17,Reed Warbler 6,Reed Bunting 1,Yellow Wagtail 1 and a single Robin. Thanks to Elaine & Sharon for their help today.

Sunrise at the HHC – Kevin Sayer

September 11th

Another attempt at a Yellow Wagtail roost resulted in a catch of 18 birds with a Sedge Warbler and a Bearded Reedling also caught.

September 9th

A warm and mist-free start to our Ringing Demonstration at the HHC helped things along - at least to start with!. We did manage a few acros from the reed-bed and some phylloscs & sylvias from the scrub net-rides. However, after a short while things quietened down a bit. It wasn't until the hirundines appeared mid-morning that things started to liven up. Switching tapes over to hirundines did the biz and we were soon catching good numbers of Sand Martins with a few House Martins & Swallows thrown in too. As we were packing up a pair of Spoonbills gave us a royal fly-past. Thanks to Elaine, Kathryn, and Ed for their help today. Totals were:- Sand Martin 50,House Martin 3,Swallow 4,Sedge Warbler 15,Reed Warbler 6,Willow Warbler 2,Chiffchaff 2,Wren 1,Blackcap 2 and my first Cetti's Warbler in Christchurch Harbour this year.

Sand Martins on the HHC Roof – Lorne Bissell
You know you're in for a good day when you start seeing things like this!
Blackcap Juvenile Female HHC Sept 2012 – Lorne Bissell
I'm trying to work out what is in the background - not your average Blackcap photo!

September 8th

Whilst erecting the nets for the Ringing Demonstration tomorrow I thought I would try for some Yellow Wagtails that had been seen previously roosting in the HHC reed-bed. I managed to trap 12 this evening plus a couple of Sedge Warblers.

Yellow Wagtail HHC Sept 2012 – Kevin Sayer

September 4th

An overcast start with high pressure dominating was hopeful for a good catch of migrants at the HHC. We started with a good number of Sedge Warblers in the reed-bed and some phylloscs in the nearby scrub. However, these soon dwindled and we were hoping for some hirundines to come over. We could only manage a handful of Swallows as many hundred circled overhead interspersed with some Sand Martins. We also managed to trap a juvenile Stonechat in the reed-bed with the final total being 57 birds. Totals were:- Sedge Warbler 27,Reed Warbler 9,Chiffchaff 3,Willow Warbler 5,Blackcap 3,Greenfinch 2,Wren 1,Reed Bunting 2,Stonechat 1,Swallow 3 and a single Goldfinch. Thanks to Elaine & Brenda for their help today.

Juvenile Stonechat HHC September 2012 – Kevin Sayer

August 27th

A very breezy but bright morning led to a rather disappointing catch of just 24 birds. The enchanting sunrise was a bit of a distraction as was an unknown passerine seen in my car highlights as we drove upto the HHC gates at 5.30am - possible Wryneck,Nightjar - who knows! The catch included 17 Sedge Warbler,5 Reed Warbler and a couple of Whitethroat. Again we caught 2 Sedge Warblers with excellent fat reserves - they weighed 17.6gms and 18.9gms respectively. Thanks to Brenda for her help today.

Sunrise over Christchurch Harbour Aug 2012 – Kevin Sayer

August 22nd

With the wind gusting from the west from first thing I knew immediately that today would be a bit like the day after The Lord Mayor's Show. We could only manage 17 birds and all of them were Sedge Warblers. The only highlight being the capture of an adult Sedge Warbler weighing 19.4gms - this follows on from yesterday where we caught one weighing 18.7gms. The BTO state that Sedge Warblers should not weigh more than 17gms - is there a Macdonalds for birds nearby we don't know about! Thanks to Elaine & Carol for their help today.

Juvenile Sedge Warbler HHC Aug 2012 – Jenny Allen
This photo shows how some of the young Sedge Warblers have struggled to find food during this very wet summer. The line of growth bars along the primaries, secondaries and greater coverts indicates that at some stage this bird has struggled to get food from its parents. Normally, you only see growth bars in the tail feathers but this year we have seen several birds with growth bars in other feathering.

August 21st

An excellent session with just 4 nets and one trained Ringer! A catch of 115 birds included as expected a stack of Sedge Warblers but also a couple of Bearded Tits - an adult male and a juvenile. Always nice to hear the "pinging" when you release them - in the reedbed - Ringers please note! As we were thinking of going home for some shut-eye the hirindines all started swirling over the HHC reedbed so I switched my MP3 over to swallow,etc and managed a good catch,including 2 controls. I could have caught a lot more but fatigue was creeping in. The totals were:- Sedge Warbler 65,Reed Warbler 11,Reed Bunting 4,Swallow 8,Sand Martin 19,Dunnock 1,Whitethroat 2,Willow Warbler 2,Robin 1 and of course 2 Bearded Tits. Thanks to Elaine,Steve and Jenny for their help today.

Adult male Bearded Tit HHC Aug 2012 – Chris Chapleo

August 12th

I was asked by Bournemouth Council to run a Ringing Demonstration at the HHC today. In gusty conditions we managed a creditable 44 birds as follows:- Sedge Warbler 35, Reed Warbler 3, Willow Warbler 2, Chiffchaff 1, Blackcap 1, Blue Tit 1 and 1 Blackbird. Thanks to Jenny, Ed and Elaine for their help.

August 11th

Our first Autumn session at the HHC resulted in a better-than-expected catch of 67 birds. Typically for this time of year the majority were Sedge Warbler but we also managed a trickle of common migrants. The totals were:- Sedge Warbler 51, Reed Warbler 8, Willow Warbler 1, Chiffchaff 2, Blackcap 2, Wren 1 and 2 Reed Bunting. Thanks to Brenda, Kathryn and Ed for their help.

May 2nd

Our first, and only, Spring session at Solent Meads, resulted in a catch of 27 birds as follows. Dunnock 3, Robin 5, Blackbird 1, Song Thrush 2, Whitethroat 3, Blackcap 5, Chiffchaff 4 and 4 Long-tailed Tits.

April 13th

Another cold and overcast day at the HHC resulted in a catch of 14 birds as follows. Blackcap 7, Dunnock 1, Chiffchaff 3, Blue Tit 2 and a Great Tit.

April 10th

Our first Spring session at the HHC resulted in just 10 birds as follows. Song Thrush 2, Dunnock 2, Wren 1, Blackcap 1, Willow Warbler 1, Chiffchaff 1, Robin 1 and a Greenfinch.

March 1st

Some new recoveries have just been sent to us by the BTO. Checkout the Recoveries page for details.

January 3rd

I have now updated the Ringing Totals upto December 31 2011. Click here for details.