Meadow Pipits

Saturday, September 21st 2013

The wind strength has meant that we have been unable to ring at The Crater for the last couple of weeks.  However this morning's forecast suggested quite a calm start to the day.  It was rather a shock to system having to be ready to put the nets up at 0615!  The moon was still 'up' as the nets were raised.

Spectacular clouds

The cloud formations made for some spectacular sights.

Spectacular clouds

We were unsure if the birds would still be on the area, however as the dawn broke so the Medow Pipits began to show themselves over the moor.  They are totally unconcerned about the cars and people and will land to feed quite close.

Meadow Pipit

There are pools of water where this one landed and many pipits use them to have a drink.

Meadow Pipit

Taking flight.

Taking flight

Landing.

Landing

Swallows and House Martins also joined the pipit flocks.  A Kestrel was seen  hovering over the moor very early.  In amongst the birds caught today were two juvenile Goldfinch and a tiny Goldcrest.  Unusually two mipits already ringed were caught.  They were caught nearly a month ago.  Have they moved on and come back or have they been around for the whole time?  If only they could tell us!  It was also noticeable that some of the birds were storing up fat reserves ready for their long journey south.

At the close of play over 150 birds had been processed bringing this year's total to over 500.  The data is of vital importance as there are very few sites that catch mipits in these numbers.


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