Are you interested in Bird Ringing?

with 19 Comments
We are now in a position that we can take on new trainee ringers.

We are active at a range of sites in Swansea, Neath Port Talbot and Carmarthenshire, including:  
  • Cwm Clydach RSPB Reserve where we have a long running project re-trapping adult pied flycatchers that aims to collect high quality data on between year survival rates;
  •  Penclacwydd (WWT Llanelli) where we run a Constant Effort Site (collecting a standardised data set as part of a UK-wide initiative aimed at analysing change in bird populations);
  • Oxwich Marsh National Nature Reserve (where we catch large numbers of migrant warblers, swallows and finches and are active throughout the year); and
  • Margam Park (where our captures regularly include species that forage in open grassland habitats such as mistle thrush and green woodpecker).
The variety of habitats at the sites we visit, and the commitment of members of the Group to ensure that sessions are run regularly provides trainees with the opportunity to study a wide variety of birds in the hand and to steadily improve their skills.
We are a very active, friendly group with a varied demographic, and include university students / researchers, ecological consultants, site wardens and representatives of Gower Ornithological Society, as well as people with a more general interest in birds and other wildlife who work / have worked outside the conservation sector. 
We would note that to make progress towards a licence you need to attend most weeks (and aim for every week), and you need to be able to drive and have access to a car. Early starts are a fact of ringing life unfortunately; arrival on site at 05:30 is typical in the mid-summer. 
A reasonable level of physical fitness is needed, particularly for the pied flycatcher work, while an ability to identify birds is always an advantage (albeit this can be taught to a large degree). We ring on both weekdays (morning and evening) and weekends, so a full time job does not preclude your attending sessions.
If you would think you would like to get involved, just leave your contact details in a comment at the bottom of the page and we will get back to you with further information.
A few pictures of birds captured in 2016 are below.
Gower Ringing Group
Water rail. We captured three of this species in 2016.

Jack snipe. We have captured 23 individuals at the marsh since late 2014. We have now proven between winter site fidelity from retrap data.

Yellow-browed warbler. In 2016 we caught 16 different individuals, including nine in one session.

Firecrests. A scarce migrant in October and November. We capture 3-4 per year.

A genuine Welsh rarity. A little bunting captured in October 2016.
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Becca Y
4 October 2017 09:01


I would like to be involved, my email address is


8 August 2017 09:57


I am registered with a trainer elsewhere but have recently moved to the area and would be keen to join you. My email address is

Many thanks,


Emma Clark
8 August 2017 09:49

Hi, I'd love to join the ringers. I have some experience overseas, email is
Emma Clark

2 August 2017 19:55

I would love to get involved;
My name is Barrie Gardiner; I'm a wildlife artist and I've been a keen birder all my life – I attended an introduction in bird ringing course last year at Parc Slip ; really enjoyed it and would like to continue.
My email address is;
Best regards,

20 July 2017 09:37

Hi there!

I would also like to hear more about it and get involved. My contact details are:

Alex McCubbin

Thank you!

Bethan Dalton
19 July 2017 19:17

Hello! My name is Bethan Dalton, my email is I'm also interested in getting involved, so I look forward to hearing from you.