My feeding station at Ravensroost for the last three years has been set up in compartment U1. This area has been fully coppiced this autumn, leaving the bird table completely exposed, so I set up several feeders along ride 38, to be this year’s feeding station.
This proved to be a less than suitable location. After significant rain during the week, the underfoot conditions were nothing short of quagmire and, unfortunately, the squirrels have found and destroyed the two seed feeders. Nevertheless, we did have a reasonable catch. I was joined by Jonny Cooper, Annie Hatt made a welcome reappearance and Steph Buggins accompanied by Lillie and Rosie (on her first visit) completed the team.
Because of the conditions and the weather (it was very cold), we only set 5 nets, along the length of R38. The catch for the day was: Nuthatch 2; Blue Tit 8(9); Great Tit 1(2); Coal Tit 2(6); Wren 1(1); Robin 3(3); Redwing 2; Goldcrest 3(2); Bullfinch 1. Totals: 23 birds ringed from nine species; 23 birds retrapped from six species.
The only remarkable thing about the catch is that it was split equally between ringed and retrapped birds. There was a degree of frustration though: at one point we had four Redwing in the net, but three of them managed to extricate themselves before we could secure them.
Before the next session I will be finding an alternative, dry, position for the feeding station: preferably one where I can effectively squirrel-proof the feeders.