Saturday, 1 June 2013


Steve Carter was over again yesterday hoping to find some more nests to up his already sizable total for this years BTO's nest record scheme. He also wanted to check the boxes to see how they're progressing and perhaps do a bit of ringing if any of the chicks were at the right age. Steve's got his ringing licence now and needs to keep is hand in as much as he can. Now I'm able to walk a lot better I tagged along with him and our youngest Aneurin joined us later in the day.
We walked to an area where Steve had found a suspected Buzzard nest, good news that the trees finally have grown their leaves so you can't see it unless you know it's there. Steve climbed the nest a good 30ft up and discovered that it indeed was a buzzard nest and there was a single chick in there Steve took a quick photo and climbed back down. I was questioning him as he was climbing down about what it was etc he gave me a four letter word rant that started "let me get down this ******* tree first before asking questions." I suppose he was right it was a hell of a climb up and down and he didn't want to fall.
the buzzard chick
We then went to check on some boxes, we went to a Redstart box where we found inside six healthy chicks and they were also the right age for ringing. So Steve got the chicks out and got them all ringed in good time as the adult birds were alarming and he didn't want to disturb them more than was necessary.

redstart box

Steve carefully takes out the chicks putting them in a cloth bag to keep them calm, I must apologise for his hat think he bought it in a charity shop c'mon the R's
he makes sure his ringing gear is all correct
he starts ringing the redstarts
look at the concentration
another one ringed

the last one

Steve puts the chicks back in the nest box

The other boxes we looked in were Blue and Great tit's except for another Redstart but this time the chicks were to small to ring. We then checked on a box that Steve knew had a Nuthatch and this time good news these were also big enough for him to ring.

Steve helps Aneurin check one of the boxes

the professional ringer gets his gear ready, notice I made him take that disgusting hat off

he starts to quickly ring the young Nuthatch's

another one done

concentrate Steve concentrate!

the final Nutty is ringed and they're all put safely back in thier nest
We were all walking back towards the house when Aneurin flushed a Linnet out of some gorse and Steve quickly found the nest. Didn't get a pic as it was deep in the gorse and as we haven't had many Linnets this year I didn't want to distress the adult birds.
We checked the Swallows in the sheds one nest had very young chicks and the other had four eggs, we also checked the Blackbird that I had blogged about previously and there were four very plump chicks in there couldn't resist getting a snap of one of them.

blackbird chick
We had a cuppa back at the house and Steve gave me some pic's of nests he's found lately.

tree pipit

meadow pipit

blue tit nest with 12 eggs

this was a cracking find a whitethroats nest

this is a tree pipit refusing to budge of it's nest. What a great parent.
Quite an enjoyable day the highlights for me were the Buzzard and Steve taking his horrible cap off, final count for the boxes were - 12 boxes accupied 4 Great tits, 5 Blue tits, 2 with Redstart both with 6 chicks and one Nuthatch.
Big thanks to Steve for his expertise, keeping  Aneurin occupied for a few hours and taking that disgusting hat off, Cheers. 

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