NLRG was formed in 1957 to help in the study of birds in the Lancaster and District Birdwatching Society area. There are currently 12 active ringers. Species currently being studied include: Pied Flycatcher, Bearded Tit, Sand Martin, Twite, Goosander, Oystercatcher and Grey Wagtail. Migration has been studied for 28 years at Heysham. We welcome anyone who wants to observe, help or perhaps wish to become a ringer. Photo: A Heysham-ringed Twite on the Mull of Kintyre (thanks to Eddie Maguire)

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Greenfinch and Twite on the Move

Our latest batch of recoveries  had some interesting  ones for these two species. The highlight was a Greenfinch ringed at Abbotsbury Swannery Dorset  last January and caught at Heysham on November 6th 2013, a movement north of 377 km. We have ringed nearly 11,000 Greenfinch and this is the second longest movement only being beaten by a movement of 392km to the Scottish Highlands. Previous recoveries have shown a similar movement S to SE in winter with recoveries in Shropshire, Nottingham, Hereford, Suffolk and Norfolk.  The  other recent Greenfinch recovery was  109 km NE to Cleveland in August being ringed in our area in February. Again we have  11 other similar recoveries suggesting a winter movement from the NE to our milder west coast area.

Our Twite are ringed at a feeding station at Heysham where we have ringed 1187 in recent years. Three birds caught this winter had been ringed at Machrihanish BO(2) and Sanda Island, both in Argyll and Bute  a movement of 239 km.These recoveries bring the total Twite showing the movement between this breeding area and our wintering site to 27. Obviously this is an important breeding area for our wintering Twite but other recoveries  extend the known breeding area further north to the Highlands and Strathclyde.

Other recoveries reported recently included three Sand Martins  ringed in the River Lune colonies and caught in the same roost at Aube in Western France, bringing our total of Sand Martins recovered in France to 43. A Lesser Redpoll ringed in our area in May was caught at Sandwich Bay Kent  on 16th November 394 km SE. Eleven previous recoveries have shown a similar S to SE movement for the winter.

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