Tuesday 12 May 2015

French and Icelandic Black-tailed Godwits

I have received information back on a couple of colour ringed Black-tailed Godwits I had spotted in the Bann Estuary over the spring.  The birds were ringed in France and Iceland and I am still awaiting information on the third bird, although it is presumed to be Icelandic also.

The first bird was ringed in Siglufjordur, in Northern Iceland on the 13th of July in 2011.  Since then it was seen in the Oare Marshes in Kent on the 14th of November 2011, Lismore in Waterford 12 days later and at the Youghal estuary, Cork the following month.  It had not been seen since until I sighted the bird on the 13th of April this year at the Bann Estuary. 

Line showing movement from ringing location to the Bann Estuary - 860 miles

The second bird has yet to be sighted near it's breeding grounds but instead around wintering spots and on migration.  It was ringed on the west coast of France at Moëze, Charente Maritime close to La Rochelle on the 19th of August 2009 as a 2cy male.  Since then it is has been sighted at 6 different locations in a similar region of France, often using the same sites for the following 4 winters, although it was not sighted in the 2014/15 winter. In Dec 2013 to February 2014, the bird spent its time at Isla Mayor, Seville, beside the Doñana National Park and was sighted in France before and after in the same winter.  I picked the bird up at the Bann Estuary on the 30th of April this year on its way north. 

Line showing movement from ringing location to the Bann Estuary - 686 miles

Hopefully with greater effort in my patch birding I should be able to pick up a few more colour ringed birds but 4 birds is a good start.  I have seen a metal ringed Curlew and Oystercatcher also this spring but not nearly close to enough to read any digits.

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