Thursday, August 03, 2006

Hiya all,


I went out last night to catch swallows…Swallows tend to roost (at this time of year), in reed-beds. When they’ve finished breeding, the adults join the first brood in the reed-beds. This flock test their flying skills prior to the autumn migration. When everyone is ready to go, they’re all off to sub-Sahara Africa.

This offers ornithologists an ideal opportunity to capture the birds and get biometric data (data relating to their body condition). It also allows us to measure the success that they have had during the breeding season, e.g. the proportion of juveniles in the population.

Last night our dedicated team of 3 went out using 120 feet of netting into the depths of a reedbed at night, using a decoy call, a call which represents a roosting colony…. To encourage them in to our catching area.

In one respect, last night can be considered to be a huge success, in that two thirds of the team were able to examine and ring species with which they were not yet experienced with at this level, with an specialist bird-handler, familiar with targeted species, on hand. I ringed my 107th species of bird and accrued a valuable piece of training. I was shown 2 different biometrical tests to apply to a bird, that I have not yet learn't, in order to determine it’s development, it's fitness to migrate, (measurements which are currently being applied worldwide). Another colleague was able to progress his own personal development, similarly, with another species.

We caught 2 birds, one swallow and one sand martin……



Blogger Maalie said...

Nice! So how many did you catch in the end?

3:58 AM  
Blogger Maalie said...

Oh, just noticed. Two birds. Only. Well done.

4:16 AM  
Blogger Maalie said...

We caught 104.

11:56 AM  

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