Monday, November 18th 2013
Autumn colours have come slowly to Foxglove but this morning, even with dull skies the colours were beautiful. Walking across to the far moor the golden Larch trees stood proud against the dark conifers.
Red Hawthorn berries, yellow willow leaves, brown Bracken and golden grasses could be viewed across the moorland.
This old Hawthorn tree lying along the ground still has vigour to produce a good crop of berries.
These berries are being eaten by the Blackbirds, Fieldfares and Redwings that have flocked to the reserve over the last few days.
Last Sunday, not a Redwing was caught; today one was returned from the first net round - followed by others! There has also been an influx of Scandinavian Blackbirds and several were mist netted. They are bigger and the females a slightly different colour to the residents.
Each ringing day is different and we never know what we are going to see pass through the ringing room. Nuthatch, Siskin, Wren, Robin,Willow and Marsh Tit and Goldcrest all made an appearance. It was also a day for the not so young birds. Visitors to the ringing room were informed that not many Goldcrests are recaptured and that they rarely live longer than a year. Today one that was ringed on 02/10/2011, was processed, making it over two years old. It has not been caught between these two dates. Where has it been?
Other older birds included a Coal Tit and a Blue Tit both over five years old and a Great Tit, ringed in the nest box over two years ago.
There were many visitors to the ringing room and they had the opportunity to see the birds close up. Thank you to the bird ringers who explained the ringing process and the importance of ringing. Thank you also to the volunteers who as always, greeted visitors, made plenty of tea (some specially to order!) and of course helped to tidy up at the end of the day.