Home

Robswildlife website click:     https://sites.google.com/site/robswildlife/               2011 Surveys                  Lists        2011 Report     2012 Report         2012 Surveys   2013 Report    2014 Report    2015 Report
2016 Report           2017 Report      2018 Report      2018 Report - breeding bird survey details 2011-18                                                                                         

Reports of visits to Ravensroost Wood 2017
                                                                                                  Wall Brown - first for the reserve, 6th August (Bob Philpott)  
                        Red Underwing, 29th August
(Trevor Simmonds)
Tawny Owl juvenile 14th July (Jon Mercer)



21st October: 2 ovipositing pairs of Common Darter plus about 5 or 6 other males which were mainly sunbathing but occasionally patrolling and having the odd dogfight.
Peter Sketch

17th October: Mistle Thrush singing, Redpolls
The team continued coppicing, including hedge-laying at the western end, and Jacqui continued the Service Tree project. (RG,GW,JC,HughS,SD,RH,SM,SH,JohnD,HelenS,TS,KS,MC)

11th October: Swallow in afternoon (RG)

10th October: Raven, Peacock,Speckled Wood, Red Admiral, Agonopterix arenella
The team split - half coppiced in the morning the other half coppiced in the afternoon, in the morning they surveyed the Wild Service Trees. The other half went for a cool walk in the wood in the afternoon! (RG,JC,SH,SM,RH,HughS,JohnD,SD,HelenS,TS,JaneD,VG,David Gilbert)

7th October: Fungus Foray with Lee Hayward:
Mica Inkcap
Mycena sp. (various) incl. haematopus & vitilis
Honey Fungus
Sulphurtuft
Stropharia aeruginosa - is this new for the site?
Giant Polypore
Turkey Tail
Stump Puffball
Dryad Saddle
Common Puffball
Pluteus cervinus
Coral Fungus sp.
Green Elfcup
also Siskins 7 2-3 Marsh Tits


3rd October: The team finished clearing the rides around section F and also cleared in front of the pond in section E. (RG,GW,JC,JohnD,SD,SM,RH,TS,KS,HelenS,JaneD)

29th September: 6 Marsh Tits calling from 5 different areas, also pair of displaying Sparrowhawks and a Swallow, Red Admiral (RG,SH)

26th September: Transect 26: Brimstone 2, Small White 1, Red Admiral 1, Speckled Wood 4 also Southern Hawkers, Common Darters & a Marsh Tit feeding on Wild Service berries
The pond was cleared of weed and we continued to clear the ride at and past the Wild Service Tree - another was found! (RG,JC,SD,SM,HughS,JohnD,TS,MC,KS,HelenS)

19th September: Transect 25: Brimstone 2, Speckled Wood 4, also Southern Hawker and Common Darter
The scything of the main ride was completed, the pond surround was cleared & start made on widening ride approaching Wild Service Tree in section F (RG,GW,JC,HughS,SM,RH,SD,VG,TS,MC,JaneD)

13th September: 6 Spotted Flycatcher (Chris Snook)

12th Sept: Transect 24: Speckled Wood 3, also 2 Southern Hawkers
The team nearly finished the scything (RG,GW,JC,JaneD,JohnD,HS,RH,KS,MC,Vanessa Goodall)

7th Sept: Blackcap & Chiffchaff singing (RG)

5th September: Probable Spotted Flycatcher seen by Geoff & Jane. Whinchat - first for the reserve - trapped by Simon.
Transect 23: Brimstone 2, Green-veined White 1, Speckled Wood 15 (JaneD, GW)
The team continued to scythe the rides, getting north of the Bridleway by lunchtime. (RG,GW,JC,JohnD,MC,SD,HughS, SM,RH,JaneD,TS,HelenS,KS)

30th August: Transect 22: Green-veined White 2, Red Admiral 1, Comma 1, Speckled Wood 25, also Meadow Brown, Small Coppers, Brown Argus and Common Blues in the meadows. Several Brown Hairstreak eggs found but no adults (RG,JaneD,JC,JohnD)

29th August: Spotted Flycatcher trapped by Simon Tucker. Redstart. Red Underwing in the car park. Also Common Darter(4), Southern Hawker(1) and (off transect) Ruddy Darter etc.
The team started cutting the rides from the car park northwards, carrying on from where the WWT group left off on 10th August.(RG,GW,JC,JohnD,MC,SD,HughS,Kevan Wind, SM,RH,JaneD,TS,HelenS,KS)
Trevor Simmonds

25th August: 5 Spotted Flycatcher in the meadows (Chris Snook)

20th August: Transect 21: Large White 2, Small White 1, Green-veined White 4, Comma 1, Speckled Wood 33, Meadow Brown 2 also Common Carpet, Silver Y 2, Migrant Hawker (RG,JC,JaneD,JohnD)

17th August: Transect 20: Green-veined White 3, Common Blue 1, Speckled Wood 37, Meadow Brown 1 also Shaded Broad-bar, Brimstone, Common Darter 2, Southern Hawker (RG,JC,JaneD,JohnD,MW)

9th August: Clouded Yellow in the meadow (Leanne Reddock)

Female Brown Hairstreak egg-laying on Blackthorn at edge of wood (RG,JC)

7th August: Tawny Owl calling
Transect 19: Brimstone 5, Large White 3, Small White 5, Green-veined White 9, Brown Argus 1, Common Blue 1, Holly Blue 2, Silver-wahsed Fritillary 4, Speckled Wood 26, Meadow brown 5, also Bloodvein, Southern Hawker(4), Common Darter(10), Ruddy Darter(2),Azure Damselflies, and Small Coppers, Emperor and Brown and Migrant hawkers outside the wood (RG,JC,TS,MC)

6th August: WALL BROWN - first for the reserve for at least 28 years - (Bob Philpott)

1st August:Transect 18: Brimstone 4, Large White 6, Small White 7, Green-veined White 13, Brown Hairstreak 1 male, Purple Hairstreak 3, White-letter Hairstreak 1, Common Blue 4, Comma 5, Silver-washed Fritillary 11, Speckled Wood 12, Gatekeeper 1, Meadow Brown 13, also a Silver Y, Southern Hawker(4), Common Darter(2), Brown Hawker, Migrant Hawker, and another Brown Hairstreak male off transect. Emperor & Emerald Damselflies at the meadow ponds.(RG,HughS,HelenS,JohnD,JC,SD)

Brown Hairstreak female (Darcia Gingell)

23rd July: Brown Hairstreak (Andrew Griffin)

Transect 17: Brimstone 7, Large White 18, Small White 9, Green Veined White 21, Purple Hairstreak 5, Common Blue 3, White Admiral 1, Peacock 4, Comma 2, Silver-washed fritillary 20, Speckled Wood 7, Gatekeeper 12, Meadow Brown 24, Ringlet 8, also Shaded Broadbar, Brown Hawker(2),Southern Hawker, Common Darter(3), Ruddy Darter(2), also at the meadow pond 3 more Ruddy Darters and a lot of Emerald Damselflies. (RG,JC,HelenS,JohnD,SD)
RG

19th July: The Purple Hairstreaks are doing particularly well this year. Yesterday & on a previous visit I saw them in good numbers - impossible to estimate - especially flying low & fast along the main ride & in the clearings. I also saw 4 Brown Hairstreaks (first for the year) including one which obligingly sat still enabling me to observe it for 3 or 4 minutes. About 2.5 weeks ago I watched 3 White-letter Hairstreaks & someone I spoke to had seen 6. Silver washed Fritillaries were also in good numbers & Gatekeepers were abundant just as the Meadow browns had been earlier. [Interesting comments - but how well are the Hairstreaks really doing? Maybe this change in behaviour is bad news for them!] (Gordon Goodfellow)

18th July: Transect 16: Brimstone 4, Large White 15, Small White 7, Green-veined White 26, Purple Hairstreak 13, Holly Blue 3, White Admiral 2, Peacock 4, Comma 3, Silver-washed Fritillary 26, Speckled Wood 9, Gatekeeper 14, Meadow Brown 50, Ringlet 32  SWFs included a valesina female for the first time in 2 years. 3 Silver Ys, 2 Small Fan-footed Waves. (RG,JC,TS)
Small Fan-footed Wave & valesina Silver-washed Fritillary (RG)

15th July: White Admiral, c6 Silver-washed Fritillaries, Ruddy Darter, Southern, Brown Hawkers, Violet Helleborines (RG et al.)

14th July: White-letter Hairstreak, 2 Fledgeling Tawny Owls, Marsh Tit, 4 Red Kites (Jon Mercer)
Jon Mercer

9th July: Transect 15: Small Skipper 1, Small Skipper 2, Brimstone 6, Large White 30, Small White 7, Green-veined White 7, Purple Hairstreak 14, Holly Blue 1, White Admiral 2, Red Admiral 1, Peacock 4, Comma 1, Silver-washed Fritillary 27, Speckled Wood 1, Marbled White 1, Gatekeeper 6, Meadow Brown 24, Ringlet 82,   Also Scarlet Tiger(3), Silver Y(2), Engrailed, Emperor(2), Common Darter(2), Southern Hawker(2), Brown Hawker, Large Red Damselflies (RG,JaneD, JohnD,HelenS, JC)

3rd July: Valesina Silver-washed Fritillary (Mervyn Carlyon)

2nd July: Transect 14: Small Skipper : 1, Large Skipper : 5, Brimstone  : 4, Large White : 9, Small White :4, Green-veined White : 15, Purple Hairstreak : 18, White-letter hairstreak : 2, White Admiral : 7, Small Tortoiseshell : 1, Comma : 1, Silver-washed Fritillary : 42, Speckled Wood : 2, Marbled White : 2, Meadow Brown : 41, Ringlet : 55
Small & GV Whites numbers estimates based on apparent proportions of those few identified. Purple & WL Hairstreaks flying low with other butterflies instead of high in the trees today. More White Admirals than the max (6) in 2017.Also 2 Common White Waves, Brimstone Moth, 6 Scarlet Tigers, a Silver Y and a Hedya salicella. (RG,HughS,JaneD,JohnD,HelenS,MC,June Jackson)

27th June: Garden Warbler with food
Transect 13: Large Skipper : 4, Large White : 4, Small White : 2, Green-veined White : 2, Purple Hairstreak : 4, White-letter Hairstreak : 1, White Admiral : 5, Red Admiral : 1, Small Tortoiseshell : 1, Comma : 3, Silver-washed Fritillary : 8, Speckled Wood : 6, Meadow Brown : 131, Ringlet : 19, also Scarlet Tiger, Yellow Shell, Brown hawker(2), Emperor(4), Southern hawker(2), Common darter, Large Red Damselfly, c20 Violet Helleborines, in the meadows  Broad-bodied & Four-spotted Chasers & a teneral Emerald Damselfly, also many mating pairs of Azure Damselflies (RG,JaneD,JC,HelenS)
White-letter Hairstreak & mating Silver-washed Fritillaries (RG)

23rd June: Bird Survey 12: (Very quiet!) 6 Chiffchaffs, 4 Blackcaps, 3 Blue Tits (Fam), Wren, Garden Warbler (fam), 2 Coal Tit incl. aberrant song!, Nuthatch, 1 Dunnock, Robin, Goldfinch, Song Thrush, Long-tailed Tit (fam), Red Kite, Blackbird, Great-spotted Woodpecker, Great Tit (fam), Buzzard, Chaffinch
Transect 12: Large Skipper : 3. Purple Hairstreak : 3, White-letter hairstreak : 1, White Admiral : 6, Comma : 2, Silver-washed Fritillary : 4, Speckled Wood : 17, Meadow Brown : 83, Ringlet : 2,  Also 2 unidentified whites. Moths included Silver Ground Carpet(2), Brindled White-spot, Common Emerald(2), Yellowshell, Large Red Damselfly, Four-spotted Chaser, Banded Demoiselle, Brown Hawker, Broad-bodied Chaser, Common Blue Damselfly, Bird's Nest Orchid, 9 Violet Helleborines in N. of wood (RG,GW,JaneD,JC,JohnD,SD,TS)
Aberrant Meadow Brown, Purple Hairstreak & Brindled White Spot (Trevor Simmonds)

13th June: Bird Survey 11: Est territories: 7 Blackbirds, Blue Tits (families), 6 Wrens, Chiffchaffs, Blackcaps, 5 Robins, 3 Great Tits (fams), 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 1 Tawny Owl (mobbed by Magpies), Magpie, Goldfinch, Buzzard, Song Thrush, Garden Warbler, Bullfinch, Nuthatch, Wood Pigeon
Transect 11: Large Skipper : 1, Red Admiral : 1, Speckled Wood : 11, also Orange Moth female, 2 Silver Ys and a Green Oak Tortrix (RG,HS,JC)
RG

10th June: 3 Foresters in the meadow (Sue Clarke)
Sue Clarke

4th June:Bird Survey 10: Est territories: 7 Chiffchaff, 5 Robin, Blue Tit (fam), Blackcap, 3 Blackbird, 2 Wren, Garden Warbler, Chaffinch (Juv), 1 Jay, Great Tit, Wood Pigeon, Great-spotted Woodpecker, also in meadows: Sedge Warbler with young, pair Reed Buntings, Willow & Garden Warbler, Bullfinch, 4 Linnets
Transect 10: No butterflies on transect - just a Garden Carpet, Silver Y and 2 Lackey caterpillars. Off transect 5 Large Skippers, a Forester and a Bloodvein.
(JaneD,JC,SD)

2nd June: Bird Survey 9: Est territories: 5 Blackbirds, Garden Warblers, Robin, Blue Tit, 4 Blackcap, Chiffchaff, 3 Wren, 2 Wood Pigeon, Marsh Tit, Chaffinch, 1 Bullfinch, Song Thrush, Great Tit, Cuckoo, Long-tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Great Spotted Woodpecker
Transect 9: Large White : 2, Green Veined White : 3, Speckled Wood : 17, also 2 Silver Ys, Adela reaumurella, Nematopogon swammerdamella, Bloodvein, Large Red & Common Blue Damselflies, Four Spotted & Broad Bodied Chasers, and in the meadows, Large Skippers, Plum Tortrix, Emperors, Blue-tailed, Azure & Red Eyed Damselflies (RG,JohnD,MC,SD & Richard Moore)

23rd May: Bird Survey 8 : Est territories: 10 Robins, 8 Blackbirds, 7 Blackcaps, 6 Chiffchaffs, Wrens, 5 Garden Warblers, 2 Chaffinches, Mistle Thrushes, Blue Tits, 1 Bullfinch, Great Tit, Jay, Coal Tit, Stock Dove, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Cuckoo, Song Thrush, Buzzard, also 4 Crows, Jackdaws etc. and a Red Kite over
Transect 8: Large White : 1, Small White : 1, Orange Tip : 2, Speckled Wood : 6, also Emperors, Four-spotted Chasers, Black-tailed Skimmers, Broad-bodied Chasers, Large Red, Common Blue & (in the meadow pond) Azure Damselfly (RG,JohnD,JC,HelenS,SD)

14th May: Bird Survey 7 : Est. territories: 6 Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Robin, 3 Wren, Garden Warbler, Wood Pigeon, 2 Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit, Blackbird, Marsh Tit, 1 Bullfinch, Song Thrush, Jay, Cuckoo, also a Crow
Transect 7: Brimstone 1, Large White 5, Green-veined White 5, Orange Tip 6, Speckled Wood 10, Common Carpet, Hairy Dragonfly - first for Ravensroost! (RG,JohnD,JC,HS)

8th May: Bird Survey 6: Est. territories: 11 Blackcap, 8 Blackbird, Blue Tit, 6 Robin, 5 Chiffchaff, 4 Wren, Garden Warbler, 3 Nuthatch, 2 Coal Tit, Great Tit, Song Thrush, Wood Pigeon, 1 Bullfinch, Stock Dove, Dunnock, Chaffinch, Marsh Tit, Tawny Owl, also 2 Crows, 1 Jay
Transect 6: 1 Brimstone, 2 Large Whites, 8 Green-veined White, 5 Orange Tip, 7 Speckled Wood (RG)

7th May: Cuckoo
(Maurice Chandler & Simon Tucker)

6th May: Grass Snake in the newt pond (Dave & Debbie Gilbert)
Grass Snake (Dave & Debbie Gilbert)

5th May: Bird Survey 5: Est. territories: 9 Blue Tit, 6 Chiffchaff, Robin, 5 Coal Tit, Blackcap, 4 Garden Warbler, 3 Wood Pigeon, Wren, 2 Long-tailed Tit, Blackbird, Great Tit, 1 Raven, Nuthatch, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Sparrowhawk, Great-spotted Woodpecker, Buzzard, Marsh Tit, also Common Whitethroat, 2 Crows.
 Transect 5: Large White : 1, Green-veined White : 4, Orange Tip : 11, Holly Blue : 1, Speckled Wood : 4
also 100s of Adela reaumurella,  Early Purple Orchids & a Large Red Damselfly at the meadow pond (RG, JaneD, JC, HelenS)

25th April: Bird Survey 4:
Est. territories: 11 Blue Tit, Chiffchaff, 9 Blackcap, 3 Robin, Blackbird, Wood Pigeon, Wren, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, Chaffinch, Nuthatch, Mistle Thrush, 1 Pheasant, Great Tit, Jay, Tawny Owl, Marsh Tit, also 1 Crow
Transect 4: Green-veined White: 1. Orange Tip: 2,
also an unidentified white, and more Orange Tips in the meadow. Also Early Purple Orchids & Twayblades (JaneD, JC, HelenS,MC)

18th April: Transect 3: 16 Brimstones, 1 Orange Tip, 3 Peacocks, 6 Commas
also Brindled Pug
Bird Survey 3: Est. territories: 14 Chiffchaff, 13 Blackcap, 10 Robin, 9 Blue Tit, 6 Great Tit, 5 Blackbird, Wren, 4 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 3 Song Thrush, 2 Coal Tit, 1 Nuthatch, Chaffinch, Willow Warbler, Mistle thrush, Pheasant, Jay, also individuals - 3 Buzzards, 1 Wood Pigeon. (RG,GW,JaneD,JC,JohnD,HS,TS,SD)

Comma

Blackcap

Bee Fly

Palmate Newt

Wood Sorrel

Buff/White Tailed Bumble Bee

Water creature
All above taken by Trevor Simmonds


16th April: Bird ringing session 2: We set up just two net rides of four 18 metre nets each, and the catch was correspondingly small.  
We caught Blue Tit 4(1); Robin (1); Blackbird (1); Blackcap 3(1); Chiffchaff 1; Goldcrest 2.  Totals: 10 birds ringed from four species; four birds retrapped from four species, making 14 birds processed from six species. (Simon Tucker)

14th April: Transect 2: 8 Brimstone, 3 Peacock
Bird Survey 2: Est. territories not individuals: 9 Chiffchaff, 7 Wren, 6 Blue Tit, Great Tit, 5 Blackcap, 4 Robin, 3 Coal Tit, 2 Nuthatch, Blackbird, Jay, 1 Mistle Thrush, Wood Pigeon, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Mallard, Raven. Also individuals: 7 Buzzards soaring. Willow Warbler - 2 in meadows/ponds area (RG,JaneD,JC,JohnD,HelenS,HughS,MC,MW)

6th April: Transect 1: Comma, also Peacock & Small Tortoiseshell off transect
Bird Survey 1: Estimated territories not individuals: 9 Blue Tits, 8 Wrens, 7 Chiffchaffs, 4 Robins, Great Tits, 3 Nuthatches, Blackbirds, 2 Treecreepers, Mallards, Jays, 1 Goldfinch, Long-tailed Tit, Blackcap, Buzzard, Jackdaw, Chaffinch
, Lesser Redpoll 2 (pair?) flew over, .  Also a Swallow over, Stock Dove over,  6 Crows, Green Woodpecker heard from outside wood (RG,HS,JaneD,JC,JohnD)

1st April: 5 Chiffchaffs, 3 Marsh Tits, Palmate Newts
(RG)

28th March: 2 Chiffchaffs
- first for the year, 2 Marsh Tits
On our last session, we finished the hedge repairs in the rain! Well done everyone! (RG,GW,HS,SD,SM,KS,JaneD,HS)
Primroses - proof of the value of our rideside clearing with scythes (RG)

21st March:
Singing Marsh Tit, Jelly Ear Fungus
The team commenced repairing the bridleway hedge where it had been flattened by weather or hounds. (RG,GW,JC,HS,SM,KK,SD,JaneD,HelenS,TS,KS,JohnD,MC,MW)

14th March: Raven, 4 Buzzards
The team completed the coupe! There was enough time to clear the path round the back of the meadow pond. (RG,GW,JC,JaneD,KK,MC,JohnD,SM,KS,TS,RH,MW)
Scarlet Elfcups and frogspawn in the meadow pond (RG)

11th March: Late Winter Bird Survey: (individual birds seen/heard) (last year's in brackets):  18 Blue Tit (13), c15 Redpoll (3), c12 Fieldfare ( -), 11 Robin (12), 8 Great Tit (3), 7 Nuthatch (4),6 Blackbird (7),  5 Jackdaw (10), Chaffinch (1), Crow (3),  4 Wren (4), Coal Tit (6), 3 Dunnock (-), Song Thrush (2), Jay (3), 2 Goldfinch (1), Great Spotted Woodpecker (3), Wood Pigeon (-), Marsh Tit (1), Buzzard (1), 1 Long-tailed Tit (1), Pheasant (-), Mistle Thrush (-), Green Woodpecker (-), 
displaying Raven (1), also a Snipe (-) by the meadow pond. Last year had two Goldcrests (none today) also a pair of Mallards and 20 Meadow Pipits in the meadows. (RG,HughS,JC,JaneD, HelenS,VM)

7th March: 2-3 Marsh Tits,
drumming Great Spotted Woodpecker, Lesser Redpoll, Great Crested Newt, Brimstone male, Tortricodes alternella
Scything of secondary rides (RG,GW,JC,TS,MC,HS,VM,JaneD,JohnD,HS,KS,SH)
RG

21st February: Coppicing in U1 as last week. (RG,GW,JC,SM,HS,SH,TS,MC,KS,RM,KS)

14th February: Coppicing in U1 continued with chainsaws (RG,GW,JC,MW,TS,SD,GW,JaneD,RM,HS,HS)

12th February: Woodcock (Tony Marsh)

7th February: Raven, drumming Great Spotted Woodpecker
Coppicing in U1 continued, including Richard Murphy and Maurice Watkin using chainsaws (RG,GW,SH,JaneD,JohnD,KS,KK,RH,MW,HS,JC,MC,HelenS,RM)

31st January
:
2 Marsh Tits, Raven, Wood Mouse
Geoff's team finished the hedgelaying, while the coppicing in U1 continued (RG,GW,KS,TS,HS,JaneD,SD,SM,KK,HS,SH,JohnD,RM,MC,MW,KS)
Four of the team coppicing (Trevor Simmonds)
28th January: 2 newts in the Newt Pond! (Maurice Watkin)

17th January: Raven, 3 Marsh Tits
- one colour-ringed - four years old!
As last week we split between coppicing and hedgelaying - the latter almost finished! (RG,GW,JohnD,JC,HS,TS,KS,MC,SM,KK,SD,JaneD,HelenS,KarenS)

10th January: Peregrine flying west, Raven, Marsh Tit, 2 Buzzards, first birdsong of season for Nuthatch, Great tit, Coal Tit, Song Thrush
The team split - Geoff's team started the third section of the car park hedgelaying while the rest continued coppicing in section U1, also providing stakes for the hedge. (RG.GW,KK,SM,JC,SD,RH,MC,KS,TS,JaneD,HelenS,SH,KarenS)

8th January: Ringing session 1: Because of the extremely windy weather recently, this was our first opportunity to get out to one of our sites in 2018.  The forecast was for there still to be some wind so, given the quagmire conditions on our other woodland sites, I opted to go to Ravensroost Woods.  Ellie and Jonny joined me for the session.  We woke up to frozen cars, no wind and excellent ringing conditions. As before, we set a minimal number of nets around the feeding station, being mindful that we had 101 birds in our last session there. With my two most experienced lieutenants to help, I wasn’t worried that we wouldn’t handle it but, when it is very cold, I don’t want birds sitting in nets for any length of time.

As expected, the catch was very Paridae heavy.  We only caught one finch: a male Chaffinch.  I took the decision not to ring it because, although its legs were normal, there were signs that it could be just starting to develop the warts caused by the Fringilla Papilloma Virus.  Quite sensibly, the rules do not allow for a ring to be fitted to a diseased bird: and I am not going to fit one to a bird I suspect might be developing a disease.

There were a couple of real highlights.   We set two nets along R38, now edged either side by 3m high hazel coppice and put on the Latvian love song, as our favourite Redwing lure is known (to us, at least), and waited.  We had our first catch within 5 minutes of setting it going and then we had another four in the net at the next round.  One of this second group was the first recovery of one of our previously ringed Redwing.  This bird was caught and ringed at Ravensroost on the 28th December 2016.  At the very least it has flown to northern Scotland and back in the last year, more likely it has been to Scandinavia for the summer, and returned to Ravensroost for this winter.  The significance of this is that it is the first record ever of a Redwing ringed and then retrapped by the West Wilts Ringing Group in consecutive winters.  There have been two caught and then retrapped at the same site in the same winter, but those are the only other recaptures.

The second highlight was a Marsh Tit, D056635, retrapped for the fourteenth time since it was the second Marsh Tit colour ringed as an adult in Ravensroost Woods on 13th October 2012.  If you see a Marsh Tit with pale blue over dark green rings on its lower right leg, it is at least six years old.  Two points: typical lifespan of a Marsh Tit is 2 years, the oldest ringed specimen was 11 years and 3 months from date of ringing, so a way to go yet for it to get the longevity record. Second point: some non-ringers are concerned about how ringing impacts on the birds.  Well, this bird has been caught and handled 15 times over five-and-a-bit years and weighed in at its best ever weight today.  It is clearly a healthy, thriving bird.

The list for the day was: Great Spotted Woodpecker (1); Nuthatch 1(2); Blue Tit 10(13); Great Tit 5(6); Coal Tit (12); Marsh Tit (5); Robin (3); Redwing 4(1).  Totals: 20 birds ringed from four species; 43 birds retrapped from eight species, making 63 birds processed from eight species.(Simon Tucker)

3rd January: Siskin. 4 Marsh Tits (RG,JaneD,HS,KenS)