This year the FBO ringing team have embarked on an exciting new trial. We have established a Constant Effort Site at Thornwick, which is a scheme run by the British Trust of Ornithology, identifying changes in catch sizes across a network of standardised mist nets. This enables us to better monitor changes in the abundance and breeding success of common passerines.
At Thornwick, licensed ringers will erect a series of mist nets in the same positions, for the same amount of time, during 12 visits evenly spaced between 1 May and 31 August.
This morning was the first session of the scheme and we couldn’t have asked for a better start… It was a cold and frosty morning to begin with, with small amounts of rain falling. We started with a few chiffchaffs, whitethroats, lesser whitethroats and more trickling through but the star bird came a bit later and was completely unexpected. As we approached one of the nets, all of us saw a blackbird sitting calmly, however as we got closer some white peaked through and to our amazement, it was a stunning ring ouzel! Two of the ringers present had never seen one in the hand before so this was a real treat.
We ended the session with 25 newly ringed birds, 13 recaptures and 17 species in total.
We will be keeping this blog up to date with all of FBO’s ringing activities so please check it regularly to find out more about what we do and why!