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)

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Meadow Pipit

Following discussion last year on ageing spring Meadow Pipit (& pics), 5 out of 6 ringed this morning were clearly 2CY on the basis of retained juvenile greater coverts. The other was an adult (all coverts, tail shape etc), but cautiously left as a '4' The 8 caught this morning exhibited a wide variety of spring plumage options 1) 2 x all feathers fresh adult-type, including all coverts and perceived adult-type tail 2) one with e.g. a mixture of old adult-type and new (adult-type) median coverts and perceived adult-type tail 3) one with e.g. a full set of 2CY median coverts and 1CY/2CY tail 4) 4 with a mixture of old 2CY and new adult-type median coverts and 1CY/2CY tail Obviously 3) & 4) are '5's. However, can 2) be definitely assigned as a '6'? Especially as the older feathers look too worn to be a result of a two-stage replacement of juvenile median coverts during late autumn/winter. Am I too cautious ageing 1) & 2) as 'probable adult' but safer to call '4's?

No comments: