The last session of ringing 2013 went great and it was a double header, not two sessions of actual ringing though, as in the morning we were coppicing at one of our sites, then in the afternoon and on wards into the evening was a roost session at a different site.
Of course we didn't have to be up as early as usual due to us just coppicing, but we did have to be there for nine o'clock so I was still reasonably tired when we arrived. The rising sun was there to admire when we arrived, reflecting nicely off the site's railings (out of focus in this picture).
As the sun rose it shone nicely on this Great Spotted Woodpecker I spotted in the canopy of this tree, first time I've seen one at this site.
After the coppicing we were off too Peter's dads to collect him and the ringing gear, it was nice to see some of Peter's family, his mum and dad, brothers and sisters.
Pete (Peter's dad) came along as well to the roost session, and introduced my brother and mum to ringing, which I think they rather enjoyed.
The session started off pretty steady with quite a few Goldcrests consistently being taken out of the net and the Chaffinches took over as they all came in to roost. There were quite a few Long Tailed Tits in the mix as well.
We caught several Long Tailed Tits from different areas of the site, and I could hear large flocks of tits, in fact the whole wood was filled with the sound of bird song.
My brother was really excited about letting go some of the birds and you should of seen the intense look on his face when he was carefully holding this Long Tailed Tit.
For the first time in a while we caught a Jay; a beautiful adult this one was. I was really pleased we caught it as firstly they are one of my favorite birds (colour wise) and my mum really likes them.
Ageing these birds can be quite tricky but you need to look how crisp and sharp the black bars on the blue feathers (mainly Greater Coverts and Primary Coverts) are. That makes this one an adult.
What an amazing year 2013 has been.
Here are a few of my ringing highlights in pictures, I cannot believe how much has happened in just one year of ringing.
(Spoon-billed) Great Tit
Chiffchaff & Chaffinch (ChiffChaff)
No ringing because of my SATS, but I did see this beauty in Wales
No ringing because of holidays and Peter being away, but I did get to go here and see lots of people from the BTO.
Long Tailed Tit
Female and Male Fieldfares
A massive thank you to the people who I couldn't do this without. You know who you are.
Bring on 2014!