We have had some good 100+ days recently, as migration has now started. On Saturday 24 August the team, consisting of Mick, Dave, Dawn Stuart and Peter N met up at 0430 at the rail track, and headed off as usual to put up nets from the Feeders to Bench, and all points in between. The night had been clear and still, making it ideal for migration, so we were hopeful we would have a busy day. After the nets were put up, we had time for a brief cup of tea which was just as well, as it would be the last one for a few hours. Time to start extracting.
The first round produced 150+ birds and we started ringing at some speed, whilst Mick went off to start the next round. Chris Hubbard, one of the Res birders was drafted in to scribe (thanks, Chris). The birds just kept coming, with Mick and Dave extracting for most of the morning. Highlights included 163 Blackcap, 143 Whitethroat, 70 Reed warbler, 38 Sedge warbler, 6 Grasshopper warbler, 6 Redstart, 1 Spotted flycatcher, 3 Lesser Whitethroat and 62 Willow Warblers. We were all amazed by the sheer volume and variety. Even better, Dawn got to ring her first Wheatear, a juvenile. The bird was in the net along the track and is only the 3rd ever caught and ringed by the Group.
*Photo courtesy of Chris Hubbard
By the end of the session we had broken three Stanford records; annual totals for Sedge and Willow warbler, and the total number for one day, with 526 new birds and 17 retraps. Even at 1200 there was a steady trickle, but we were all in need of fluids, so by 1300 we had packed up and staggered off to the White Hart. A superb morning.