Blue tit chicks hatched in England, video


This video is from the RSPB Fairburn Ings in Yorkshire, England, about their blue tit nest. It says about itself:

The chicks began to hatch on the 15 May [2015] and this is footage of them in their first few hours.

Britain’s oldest marsh tit in Yorkshire


This is a marsh tit video.

From the BTO Bird Ringing ‘Demog Blog‘ in Britain:

15 May 2015

Old friends welcome in the new CES season

We recently received the following fascinating account of the first CES visit of the year at Foxglove Covert, Catterick, Yorkshire. The first CES visit period of 2015 is now over and we are already hearing stories of how long-term ringing projects can help us learn more about the productivity, abundance and survival of birds in Britain & Ireland.

Tony Crease writes: …

Monday provided the window of opportunity and 12 ringers from the Swaledale Group turned out for visit 1 of our 23rd CES season. With trees still without leaves after the recent very cold weather, the usually lush habitat was less than ideal for hiding the nets. Nevertheless, we had an interesting day catching 204 birds of 25 species. The first Blackcap and Garden Warbler of the year were processed as well as 29 Bullfinches, 23 Willow Warblers and many of our routinely resident species. What was entirely unexpected was the age structure of the birds, some of which we find are surprisingly long lived.

Among the more common species we processed was a four year old Chiffchaff, Chaffinches that were four and six years old respectively and six Blue Tits from four to eight years old. Even more fascinating was a pair of Willow Tits; the female, who had a large brood patch, had been ringed on the reserve as a juvenile on 9 August 2007 and had been caught every year since – a total of 37 times in all!

As if that wasn’t compensation enough for our very early start, to our complete amazement there then followed R084872, a Marsh Tit which had been ringed as a juvenile in the reserve on 10 July 2004. This bird, we believe, must now hold the British & Irish longevity record for that species; it has been re-trapped 42 times and has been recorded at Foxglove Covert every year since except 2010 and 2013.

Increasingly, we are finding more results like these with several passerines, including Blackbirds, quite often living five years or more. It is a compelling aspect of our ringing activities and one that has improved so much with the introduction of IPMR. We load the birds as we ring them so information on original ringing data is readily available.

While visiting our Tawny Owl boxes recently we found one bird that had been breeding in the same next box for 16 years. It is an intriguing subject and one that continually delivers surprises. Life is full of the unexpected and our feathered friends in and around Catterick provide many thought-provoking examples.

Seabirds back at Bempton Cliffs, England


This video from England is called “The Birds of Bempton Cliffs“.

From Steve Race Wildlife Photography in England today:

I have had a great day at Bempton Cliffs with all the seabirds back now in large numbers even including a handful of Puffins (very early). One of my favourite seabirds is the Razorbill and they are now starting to peer around the cliff ledges looking for potential partners.

If you would like to take photographs of the amazing seabird colony at Bempton Cliffs from ‘Above and Below’ the cliffs then why not join me on one my full day trips this Summer. Please click on the … link for more details.

2015, Year of the Adder


This video from South Yorkshire in England is called Adders mating (Vipera berus).

2015 is not just the Year of Vincent van Gogh. And the Year of the Penny Bun for mycologists. And the Year of the Goat in the Chinese calendar (starting on 19 February). And the Year of the Badger.

The Dutch RAVON herpetologists have decided that 2015 is the year of the only venomous snake in the Netherlands: the adder. They hope that this year there will be more measures for a better environment for adders, like tunnels enabling them to cross roads.

See also here.

Bird news from England


This video from Britain is called Separating Short-eared and Long-eared Owls.

A report on Twitter from Flamborough in England says that today, they saw a short-eared owl; 27 whooper swans flying south; and two snow buntings.