Early mist over the marsh rapidly cleared, and from just after 07:00 the day was warm and sunny. The catch of 91 birds was made up as follows:
The highlights were three tree pipits, taking the annual total to nine, the fourth grasshopper warbler and eighteenth unique garden warbler of the year, as this species is relatively scarce in Gower. The first song thrush of the year was overdue! It was also good to see goldfinches returning to some feeders we have in scrub on the edge of the reed bed: we trapped 116 new birds in March and 79 new birds in April this year, but only one bird in August. Three today suggests we should have a good number in September. The only disappointment was a marsh tit that was too clever to go in the nets, but which stayed around the feeders for much of the morning.
Totals for the year to date are in the table below:
We have now trapped and ringed 1971 birds of 40 species at the marsh this year, with a high proportion of these being migrants. The next session, if typical of recent weeks, will see us break 2000 new birds for 2014 at the site. It is also likely to see us capture our 200th new blackcap – we only ringed 51 in 2013.
Thanks to Keith Vaughton for company and assistance this morning.