Oxwich Marsh 2nd October

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Another overcast morning with very light winds provided ideal conditions for ringing. 
We put nets in the fen meadow, scrub and Natural Resources Wales compound: a total of 670 feet in total (albeit the latter nets typically only catch meadow pipits).  After an inauspicious start, with 390 feet of net in the fen meadow returning no birds during the first round, the rate of capture steadily improved.

The catch of 64 was made up as follows:

Species New Re-trapped Total
Cettis Warbler 0 1 1
Goldfinch 2 2 4
Goldcrest 10 1 11
Chiffchaff 15 0 15
Blackcap 2 0 2
Meadow Pipit 7 0 7
Wren 0 1 1
Dunnock 5 2 7
Robin 3 0 3
Chaffinch  5 0 5
Reed Bunting 1 1 2
Blue Tit 2 1 3
Great Tit 1 0 1
Sedge Warbler 1 0 1
Bullfinch 1 0 1
Total 55 9 64

Highlights were 14 chiffchaffs, the highest day-catch of the species to date, 11 goldcrests and a late sedge warbler.  Goldcrests appear to have arrived in numbers earlier than in 2013: over 30 have been caught a the site in the last few weeks.  Two new blue tits takes us past the total of 218 new birds of the species trapped in 2013.  However, it looks as though blackcap catches are likely to be low from now on.

Sedge warbler

The other highlight of the session was a clouded yellow butterfly.  Charlie managed to get a decent shot of it as it fed.

Clouded yellow nectaring

Photos by Charlie Sargent.

Thanks to Charlie, Heather Coates, Cedwyn Davies, Keith Vaughton and Phil Mead for coming along yesterday and for running the session after I had to go to work.

Owain Gabb

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