Saturday, 17 September 2011

Dippers, very nearly!

Yesterday I had a call from a visiting C-ringer, Brenda Cook, who wanted to come along and see some dazzling in action (double took to start with as I didn't hear the "in"!).  Always happy for an excuse to try catching more waders, and going on the weather forecast predicting heavy rain, I agreed to meet Brenda and Jane at 9.15pm. After several hours spent walking the wind swept, seaweed strewn and largely birdless beaches of Ynyslas, Llanon and Aberaeron we had caught a total of just 3 Ringed Plover, 2 Turnstone and 1 Dunlin. From the very small number of birds we saw you would be hard-pushed to imagine that it was just past the peak autumn migration period! Must be sheltering up the estuary somewhere.

Brenda with a juvenile Ringed Plover

As we were there, I also took the opportunity to check a couple of roost bridges in Llanrhystud for Dippers. Dippers are one of our RAS species and, at the request of the BTO,  I have recently started individually colour-ringing them. Caught 2 out of 4 and one of the others was identified from its colour-ring before it flew.  Click the link to the Teme Catchment Dipper Report for more info on our Dipper studies.

1st year female Dipper, note the white tips to greater coverts and the dull brown eye

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