Saturday, 17 May 2014

Class of 2014

Two weeks ago I checked the nest boxes at Linacre (see here), and found a good number of eggs and sitting birds. Today I went back with my ringing trainer, to check how they'd come on. Good news- we ringed 46 birds, comprising 4 broods of Great Tit (5,7,8 and 8), and 2 broods of Blue Tit (10 and 8).

Great Tit (1st pullus of 2014)
There were approximately 30 more broods that had hatched in the last few days, and a few that were actually hatching today, so next week will be very busy!
 As well as the Blue and Great Tits, we also checked the box that looked like it had a Wren's nest in it, and found ..... a Wren sitting on some eggs. This is the first confirmed breeding of this species at Linacre.
Sadder news is that the Grey Wagtail's nest that  I found, was checked today, and had been predated. The nest had been pulled apart, and all the eggs were gone. Unfortunately this is the outcome for a high percentage of birds' nests. Eggs make a very good meal for many predators, including Squirrels, Stoats, Weasels, Jays, Magpies, Great-spotted Woodpeckers etc.....
To end on a happier note, I had a phone call from a friend from the Chesterfield RSPB Group a few days ago, telling me that she'd seen a Red Kite at Linacre on 3rd May. It was feeding on some road kill by the main entrance. Excellent news, as this is the first record for 2014.

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