6th September. Of Flies on Birds

With heavy rain forecast and a massive downpour in the night it seemed likely that my mornings ringing would be postponed. However a glance out of the window at silly o'clock revealed no rain. Arriving at Williamthorpe at 6am and the rain was still holding off, though with the forecast in mind only four nets were set up. This proved more than enough as a constant supply of specimens kept the three of us busy. Encouragingly most of the birds trapped were juveniles indicating that the breeding season had not been as bad as expected, though judging by the amount of growth bars exhibited particularly by the warblers it had been tough. Highlight for me was this Goldcrest.

For some reason I decided against wellies!!


The rain came around 9.00 so the nets were taken down and we moved on to Carr Vale to trap House Martins. The two nets set up proved ample for this and a constant stream of Martins kept us more than busy. Having never handled any hirundines before I wasn't prepared for the hideous looking parasitic flat flies which were duly removed and squashed. In all we rang around 60 House Martins in just over an hour with all but one being juveniles.

4 comments:

Andy Mackay said...

House Martins are horrible birds. When I worked at Sandwich Bay we ringed 1000s of them and the bloody flat flies got everywhere. I even found one in my bed once!

Earl Gray or Dave for short! said...

do you want to talk about Andy?....

Andy Mackay said...

Eh?

Mark said...

Likewise??