Red Lodge, like Webb’s Wood, has always been one of those sites where the catches were large when the feeding station was operational and the winter flocks were around, but quiet during the rest of the year. However, Red Lodge has really picked up since the thinning operations that, ironically, reduced the catch in 2015. It is probably something to do with additional under-storey that has developed as a result of the thinning.
On Saturday I was joined by Jonny, David, Steph and Lillie and we set exactly the same amount of net as we did at Webb’s Wood last Saturday. We didn’t quite get to the 100 birds, but 80 is a good haul for this site. It was an interesting catch: the vast majority were juvenile birds – 66 of them, including two young Great Spotted Woodpeckers:
You can tell this is a juvenile because of the red cap. They lose this during post-fledging moult and the female retains an all black cap and the male develops a red patch at the back of the head / top of the neck. The Nuthatch could not be aged: both juveniles and adults undergo a full moult into adult plumage post- breeding / fledging and this one had just about completed its moult.
The list for the day was: Great Spotted Woodpecker 2; Nuthatch 1; Treecreeper 1; Blue Tit 20(1); Great Tit 22(2); Coal Tit 1; Marsh Tit 3(2); Wren 6(1); Dunnock 1; Robin 6; Song Thrush 2; Blackcap 5; Chiffchaff 2; Willow Warbler 2. Totals: 74 birds ringed from 14 species and 6 birds recaptured from 4 species, making 80 birds processed from 14 species. The 6 recaptured birds were all adults, as was one each of the Great and Marsh Tits and Robin, plus two each of the Blackcaps and the Song Thrushes.
On top of the 6 Marsh Tits ringed at Webb’s Wood last weekend, we ringed another 3 this weekend at Red Lodge: 2 juveniles and 1 adult. Hopefully this heralds a glut of the species this autumn and winter.