28 January 2012

BGB Ringing Demo

It was a cold frosty morning when I set off from Pitlochry, the temperature on the car thermometer was showing -3C, I'm not used to these sub-zero temperatures!!

I arrived at the RSPB Vane Farm reserve at 10am and the Big Garden Birdwatch (BGB) ringing demonstration was well under way. I was just in time to see a male and a female Great Spotted Woodpecker being shown to the crowd. Next up for ringing were some Blue Tits, Great Tits and Chaffinches.

When there was a break waiting for the next catch to be bought back to the ringing area I had a quick chat with Rob the ringer in charge. As there were already several trainees doing the ringing I concentrated on learning how to age and sex some of the species being caught and got to handle some Blue Tits, Great Tits and Chaffinches.

I also helped out on one of the mist net rounds and extracted a Goldfinch, two Chaffinch and two Greenfinch. Right at the end of the session I got to ring a Greenfinch, my first bird ringed this year!!.

By the end of the session there had been 80 birds processed. Other species caught and rung during the demonstration included Blackbirds, Coal Tits, a Dunnock, Long Tailed Tits and a Robin.

A big thanks to Rob, the members of the Tay Ringing Group and the RSPB staff who all made me welcome and allowed me to join in with the session.

Male Great Tit waiting to be extracted from the mist net

Long-tailed Tit being shown to the people watching the ringing demonstration

Tomorrow I hoping to get out ringing with some members of the Fylde Ringing Group weather permitting. I wonder what we'll catch?

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