- 8 species ringed – including the 1st Blackbird and Sparrowhawk of the year.
- Species list increases: Mediterranean Gull, Rook, Sedge Warbler and Sparrowhawk added.
- Important work continues: mesh wire fitted to Gully Trap, and the jetties and cliff steps cleared
Nine people departed Donaghadee on board the Copeland Shearwater for the third weekend visit of 2015 on Friday the 24th of April.
Although the forecast for the weekend was for strong north/north west winds, with rain until Saturday lunch time, the weather cleared by Saturday afternoon leaving some nice sunshine for the remainder of the weekend – although it was still cold in the brisk winds.
North/north west winds are not ideal for bringing spring migrants to the island, so those birds that were present may have arrived on the southerlies through Friday and remained throughout the weekend – waiting for the next break in the winds.
Despite the conditions, the team did manage to open a few mist nets on the east side of the island, which was relatively sheltered, and, in combination with the Heligoland traps, caught and ringed a few migrants.
As with the weekend previous, the crow trap, baited with bread, tuna and dog food, was again successful, catching two new Hooded Crows.
In total, 14 new birds were ringed with 2 re-trapped wrens.
CBO Weekend trip 24th-26th April Ringing Totals (retraps in brackets)
|Species ringed||Number ringed|
|4. Hooded Crow||2|
|5. Willow Warbler||4|
There was some great bird watching on offer, with particular interest in the island’s breeding species. CBO is a fantastic place to get up close to Black Guillemot, Eider and thousands of Manx Shearwater.
Four species were added to the 2015 bird list: Mediterranean Gull, Rook, Sedge Warbler and Sparrowhawk. The Med Gulls were initially picked up on call; flying in from the south, they settled on Mew Island amongst the Black-headed Gulls, allowing some good views through the telescopes.
Really good progress was made in the restoration of the gully trap. Both sides now have the wire mesh replaced and the first 5 metres of the roof was attached. It is planned – with just a little more effort – to have this trap in full operation by mid-May (perhaps in time for Whinchat & Cuckoo!).
Other tasks saw the jetties scrubbed down, and the Cliff-path steps were also given a little TLC having become overgrown and covered in loose gravel.
If you would like to arrange a weekend stay, contact our Bookings Secretary (email@example.com)
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