Friday, 25 September 2015

Sandwich Tern - Blue EFF

In the recent post about the Icelandic Oystercatcher, I mentioned a couple of other colour-ringed birds recorded there. Well, I've heard back from Ewan Weston about the Sandwich Tern.

It had been ringed as an adult at Ythan Estuary in Aberdeenshire in July 2013. It has been re-sighted several times since, at Girdleness, back at the Ythan and at Findhorn Bay in Moray. 

Red - Ythan
Blue - Girdleness
Yellow - Findhorn Bay
Green - Whitehouse Lagoon
My sighting is the first of this bird since September last year and the first from outside Scotland but it isn't the only colour-ringed Sandwich Terns seen in Northern Ireland this summer (see here).

Talking of Ewan, he will be talking at the upcoming Northern Ireland Birdwatchers' Conference at Oxford Island in November (see here). It's always a great programme and an excellent opportunity to catch up with old faces.

Thanks to Ewan for the information.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Whitehouse Part II

I mentioned in the recent post about the colour-ringed Oystercatcher that there had been a number of other colour-ringed birds seen at Whitehouse Lagoon recently (see here).

I'm still waiting to hear back confirmation on an Icelandic colour-ringed Black-tailed Godwit and another of Ewan's colour-ringed Sandwich Terns from NE Scotland (he's off on the other side of the world at the minute!).

As well as these, I also recorded one of our colour-ringed Black-headed Gulls and Gareth visited today, getting yet another bird. 

The bird I saw was 2AFF, which had originally been ringed on Mew Island, Copeland Islands and has been recorded once before, also at Whitehouse (see here).

Gareth's bird was a "first". 2ALP had been ringed on Blue Circle Island in 2013 (see here) and this is the first re-sighting of it since ringing. Wonder were it has been since, but I'm guessing it has traveled further than the 20km between Larne Lough and Whitehouse Lagoon!

Photo by Gareth Platt

Friday, 18 September 2015

Hat-trick of colour-ringed gulls

Suzanne Belshaw got in touch recently with a couple of reports of colour-ringed Herring Gulls and a Black-headed Gull.

The first bird, which was at Ballyholme, Belfast Lough had originally been ringed as a first-winter bird at Peel in the Isle of Man in 2012 (see orange on map below) and this is the first report of it since.

Orange - movement of IoM bird
Yellow - movement of Copeland birds

The second report was of one of our Copeland birds. It hadn't moved quite as far, but as it is only the third report of the birds colour-ringed on Big Copeland, we were delighted to receive it! It had been ringed as an adult in June this year.

Photo by Suzanne Belshaw

The final bird was also a first re-sighting. A Black-headed Gull, which was recorded at the same time as the Herring Gull at Donaghadee, had also been ringed on the Copeland Islands, on Old Lighthouse Island, as a chick in 2014.

Photo by Suzanne Belshaw
Many thanks to Suzanne for passing on the information and photos.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Colour-ringed Oystercatcher

Gareth got in touch last week to report a colour-ringed Oystercatcher which he had seen at Whitehouse Lagoon, Belfast Lough.

Photo by Gareth Platt

As you can see, it's a combination of colour-rings and a green flag. 

Photo by Gareth Platt

After consulting the brilliant cr-birding website, Gareth got the information of the ringer and contacted him directly to report his sighting.

He has now received an update on the bird, which was confirmed as having been ringed as an adult on the nest in SW Iceland in June this year.

That's a distance of around 1,300 km and is yet another example of what we are learning about birds through colour-ringing.

This isn't the only colour-ringed bird recorded at Whitehouse recently. I will post details in the coming days...