Thursday, 27 October 2011

Ton-up and a juicy bonus!!!

Last night visiting Shropshire ringer, Alan Heath, Jane and myself headed down to Ynyslas to do a spot more drag-netting for Skylarks. Alan was keen to see the technique in action as the Shropshire Ringing Group are contemplating getting a net themselves and hitting the multitude of stubbles in the north of the county.

Drag-net in operation (hard to show in the dark mind!)

Numbers present are dropping a bit now, I guess birds are still pushing south, but we did manage to catch another 17 including 3 re-traps (two had gained weight and one had lost a bit).

A couple of the Skylarks caught appeared to have orange patches around their eyes and on closer inspection this appeared to be some sort of mite infestation? Not seen this before.

Not satisfied with our efforts at Ynyslas we headed over to Llanon. After a quick look along the foreshore north of the church, where we ringed a Golden Plover and a Black-headed Gull, we headed to the fields south of the town where we caught another 10 Skylarks (including 1 re-trap). This took the number caught in Ceredigion so far this autumn to over 100. We also had a very special early Christmas bonus from Lapland!!

This, as far as I know, is a ringing first for Ceredigion. Not many Lapland Buntings are caught in Britain, although 2010 was a very good year with 85 ringed throughout Britain and Ireland. To show just how unusual a year it was, only 20 were ringed in the previous 10 years! Certainly bought a smile to three people's faces and even elicited a bit of spontaneous "Lap" dancing (no hyphen!).

1 comment:

  1. There is a host specific feather mite called
    Proctophyllodes euryurus which is found on Skylarks, I'm surprised nobody else knew that.... OK I googled it!


Please feel free to leave a comment on any of the posts featured. All comments are moderated however so may take a short time to appear. Unsuitable comments will be deleted.