Despite the moderate SE winds there were clear skies over Whitburn today. It was clear from the offset that there were very few birds around. A yellow browed warbler was present in the Big Mound and in the Little Arc (mound to the east of the Big Mound). In total of 5 yellow browed warblers were present in the Coastal Park with a further 7 in the local area, of which 5 were in Church Lane, Whitburn. Ringing was slow all day with a total of 11 birds ringed of 6 species including 3 retraps.
12 yellow-browed warbler
2 richard's pipits
1 marsh tit (Marsden Quarry)
song thrush (4), great tit (2), greenfinch (2), singles of blue tit, brambling, siskin and a retrap blackcap and song thrush (2).
There was a full team of ringers working two sites at Whitburn Coastal Park today. With clear skies overnight there was not going to be a large fall of migrants. The first net round produced another new yellow browed warbler and a retrap. A second new yellow browed warbler turned up in a net in the Big Mound mid afternoon. That brings the annual total to 7 ringed and there are plenty of unringed birds in the coastal park. A total of 34 birds of 15 species were trapped and ringed including 2 retraps. There was no sign of the rustic bunting or the common rosefinch today.
1 blyth's reed warbler (in the nature reserve)
3 richard's pipit (in the field opposite the coastal park entrance)
1 whinchat (in the field opposite the coastal park entrance)
5 snow bunting (south)
song thrush (6), greenfinch (4), blue tit (4), goldfinch (3), yellow-browed warbler (2+1), chiffchaff (2), chaffinch (2), robin (1+1), great tit (2), singles of house sparrow, wren, dunnock, woodpigeon, redwing, coal tit, meadow pipit and goldcrest plus a retrap blackbird.
John arrived for an afternoon/evening ringing session. A rustic bunting along with 2 richard's pipits and a common rosefinch graced the site. However all evaded the nets. Fingers crossed the rustic stays over night and finds a net in the morning.
It was a much clearer day with clear skies and calm winds. A yellow-browed warbler was trapped on the first and the last net rounds making the total so far this year to 5 which equals the 2011 total. There were at least 4 different yellow-browed warblers in the Big Mound during the day. The supporting cast included a tree pipit trapped which is only the second ringed in this site. Chaffinches, bramblings and a continued stream of meadow pipits passed south over the site.
The weather forecast was for NE winds over night and fog so it was hoped that there might be a fall of birds and on the first net round it looked promosing with a chiffchaff and then a spotted flycatcher trapped. However it was soon apparent that there were few birds about. There was approximately 20 snipe feeding around the Coastal Park with another 4 up on the Leas. Several Bramblings were observed heading south and a snow bunting went north over Jackies Beach. The first autumn redwing and song thrush were trapped and several were observed flying in off. Yellow-browed warblers were turning up all over the place with a total of 9 being found in the local area. Not surprisingly two yellow-browed warblers were trapped and ringed over the day. The surprise of the day came when our second common rosefinch was trapped.
Elsewhere a red-breasted flycatcher was found in the afternoon on the Leas hedgerow. Once the fog had lifted there was a big wildfowl movement offshore.
Ringing: 4 greenfinch, 2 yellow-browed warbler, 2 robin, singles of common rosefinch, spotted flycatcher, song thrush, redwing, chiffchaff.
After hearing reports of 300 yellow-browed warblers in Norway at the beginning of the week John poped down to the Coastal park after work and put up a handful of nets in the Big Mound. On the first net round he trapped a yellow-browed warbler. It was very quiet though with few other birds about.
Ringing totals: 3 birds - singles of yellow-browed warbler, robin and a blue tit.
A much more breezy day today and winds still from the west. A total of 28 birds of 12 species were ringed today plus 5 retraps.
Ringing totals; 7 blue tit, 6 greenfinch, 4 robin, 3 chiffchaff and chaffinch and singles of blackcap, whitethroat, goldcrest, great tit, dunnock, goldfinch and reed bunting. Retraps included 2 blue tit and great tit and a dunnock.
With the weather forecast showing NNE to NE winds over night with rain, it was hoped that there would be a fall of migrants on the Whitburn coast. The first net round produced a single retrap wren and it was clear that birds did not arrive over night. So it was then hoped that birds would arrive in the afternoon which also failed to occur with not a single bird trapped between 1140 and 1630. All was not lost though with a new ringing species for the site, a common rosefinch.
Juvenile rosefinch (c) Phil
ringing totals - 13 birds
3 chaffinch, 2 garden warbler, 2 great tit and singles of common rosefinch, whitethroat, willow warbler, wren, robin and goldfinch.