Friday 19 March 2021

We're Knot flagging!

Last year we started two new colour-ringed projects putting leg-flags on Knot and Turnstone. The Turnstone ringing has yet to yield many resightings but the Knot flagging is already proving very rewarding. Here is an update of re-sightings so far.

The Knot flagging project is being done in collaboration with Jim Wilson of the International Wader Study Group and Peter Knight and Rose Maciewicz of Leeds University. Since the scheme began, a total of 70 Knot have been leg-flagged at Ynyslas and, of these, 14 have been re-sighted away from Ynyslas, several on multiple occasions. This is a huge improvement on the results obtained by BTO metal ringing alone where we have previously had just two recoveries from over 350 knot ringed.

To date most of the recoveries have come from the UK but have also included birds re-sighted in Ireland, France, Belgium and Portugal. 

Knot re-sightings 20/21. Click on individual icon to see details

The Portuguese re-sighting is very significant as its location would indicate that the bird was of the race Calidris canutus canutus from Siberia which winters in West Africa. This race has very few (if any) confirmed records for Wales (although it must surely be present quite frequently on autumn passage?).

Ynyslas leg-flagged Knot (race canutus?) in Portugal. Unfortunately the individual could not be identified as it was not close enough to read the inscription on the flag.