We made four rounds of the nets , the first two being the most fruitful , the third and fourth less so as the sun got higher and the nets were more obvious to the birds , but even the fourth provided some excitement . I have heard from Roger since with a summary of the days results .
122 birds were trapped , 89 of them being first timers and 33 being re-traps , having already been ringed here or on other sites . The birds covered 18 species , the most numerous being Common Whitethroat (25) , This one still in situ in the nets .closely followed by Reed Warbler (20) and Great Tit (17) , Blackcap (10) , all brown headed juveniles apart from one male adult .
Smaller numbers of other common species , but a few notable finds were ,a juvenile Kestrel which provided the excitement of the last round . This was one of 3 newly fledged birds from a nest box in the middle of the site , and flew off to join the rest of the family group when released .
The noisiest trapping was this juvenile Great Spotted Woodpecker . A juvenile Reed Bunting from only a couple of pairs on the site .A super cock Linnet .And finally one of a handful of Sedge Warblers .
I have to mention the ignominious weighing of the birds . As seen below , they are placed head down in a cup with a small hole in the bottom . This Reed Warbler , and all the others stayed perfectly still whilst doing their headstands , including the GSWoodpecker and the Kestrel , but they did have larger cups ! All flew off strongly when released from the cup .
Apart from the birds , a couple of Buff Tailed Bumble Bees managed to get entangled , which also required Roger's dexterity not to get stung . Being a reedbed , there were plenty of biters about , and repellant was the order of the day . The worst of these was this big Horse-fly-Tabanus bromius , several of which managed to get snagged up in the nets . Another job for Roger . By 1200 the temperature was about 29/30C , and it was time to take down the nets and pack away . At least the vegetation was bone dry by then , as was our previously sodden clothing .
Given the habitat very few Odonata were seen , with difficulty above those Reeds . Small Tortoiseshell , Red Admiral , Comma , lots of Large Skipper and Large and Small White were all recorded on the butterfly front .
All in all , a very enjoyable morning , and I thank Roger for giving me the experience and the chance to get up close to many species , usually seen at the other end of optics .
Shame I can't say the same about the afternoon , watching the football !