Sunday 12 April 2015

Portstewart Strand 05/04/2015

John and I arrived on site before 7am and set up both the East (66m) and West net rides (84m) and also the gorse singles/doubles. We were joined by Fred and Gwen (Marine/Environmental students from France) later in the morning.  We had a decent session with 26 new birds and 14 retaps including a nice male Stonechat, a retrap female Stonechat and a Redwing.

                                       Male Stonechat caught in a double shelf net in the gorse.
Female Stonechat retrap caught in a trap

Probably a Redwing of the Icelandic race 'coburni'

The Redwing on appearance suggests it is of the Icelandic race being quite dark and heavily marked but the wing length was in the overlap zone of the two races.  There was still a wintery feel on the estuary with the lack of any hirundines or warblers and the presence of large numbers of wildfowl and some Whooper Swans.    

  Ringing Totals 05/04/2015
                             New           Retrap
Blackbird                                    1
Blue Tit                  2
Bullfinch                3                   2
Dunnock                2                   5
Goldcrest               1                   2
Goldfinch               5
Lesser Redpoll       1
Linnet                    1
Meadow Pipit        2
Redwing                1
Robin                     2
Song Thrush          2
Stonechat               1                   1
Wren                      3                   2
Total                     26                  14

John and I again went out the next morning for a quick session at our University of Ulster Coleraine river site.  It was very quiet but we did see and catch out first Willow Warbler of the year.  There were also a couple of singing Chiffchaff in the area.

Richard Donaghey

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