Sunday, 15 September 2013

Blackcaps, Robins and a bonus Spotted Flycatcher!


Saturday was another great ringing session. As we were setting up, we were lucky enough to hear a Tawny Owl in a tree next to us. Blackcaps were the main birds of the day. I always love to study and ring these birds, well I do with all birds, but I think these birds don't tend to wriggle around as much as some other birds. The picture is one we caught earlier this year. It was also nice to ring a large number of Robins. and a couple of Blackbirds. Where do Blackbirds disappear to at this time of year, there have been none in the garden at home for weeks now (and very few out ringing).


At this time of year we'd be catching quite a few juvenile White Throats but today we also caught an adult that had just finished it's moult, so it had all the adult plumage feathers, it was absolutely stunning. (One of the reasons we know it is an adult is because a really bright orangey eye, whereas on a juvenile it would be a rather dark eye).


In comparison to the picture above, the bird in the picture below is a juvenile White Throat, see when  you compare the eye you can tell the one below is a juvenile.


When you are ringing, you can also do a bit of bird watching and as I did yesterday. Early in the morning we had talked about us possibly seeing a Spotted Flycatcher and as I was chatting to Peter a Spotted Flycatcher suddenly flew over us and then across us into a bush as we were taking the nets down. Me, Peter, Dad and Moxey all saw it, so that was a perfect way to end the day.


16 comments:

  1. Wish you had saved your Blackbird question for Tuesday, I could have got one right for a change.
    The blackbirds seen in your garden they vanish for a little while because they've finished rearing young etc so as a result are in various state of moult, this makes it harder for them to fly away from a predator such as a Sparrowhawk, so they seek shelter in thick hedges/wooded areas where they can hide until some of there feathers are in better condition. It also gives them a chance to feed up and build some body fat/weight ready for the winter.

    ReplyDelete
  2. they're really beautiful. sweet little blackcap!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Findlay, you are teaching me about birds. I never knew that about the Whitethroat's eye. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Findlay...Your getting an in the field education with the things you are leaning as you go on these ringing trips, such as the eye color for an adult White throat!!
    Your a great kid or teenager : )!!

    Grace
    Thanks for commenting on my post!!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Another interesting and informative post Findlay. Keep up the good work, you're doing a great job of educating us oldies!...[;o)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi Findlay, sorry for the second post but thought this article from the BTO on Birdguides might be of interest titled Bye Bye Blackbird here's the link http://www.birdguides.com/webzine/article.asp?a=3937

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for this information Douglas. I am going to go through it all tomorrow after school. From Findlay

      Delete
  7. Very interesting that the adult has an orange eye! Amazing what a detail can add to identifying a bird.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Those eyes are really something!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wow...and to be able to handle these beautiful ones is something else!! I'm a bit jealous.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Interesting information and nice close shots!

    ReplyDelete
  11. No Blackbirds here at the mo either Findlay. They will return from the continent soon enough

    ReplyDelete
  12. Nice job Finlay. Always nice to have your visits. Have a fun weekend~

    ReplyDelete
  13. Nice post - Spotted Flycatchers are nice birds - but am I correct in thinking that they are not as common as they used to be?

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

    ReplyDelete