Monday, 20 June 2011

Breeding season in full swing

A hectic few days has revealed some interesting developments. Checks on Saturday resulted in a complete blank and the loss of some long standing breeding sites. One, in Appleton, was expected as the breeding male had been discovered frozen to death during the cold winter.

Sunday was much more positive with two broods of chicks ringed, four at Tabley and five at Lach Dennis. Additionally I found a new breeding female with five young at another site at Tabley. These birds are much further behind their near neighbours as the chicks were only about a week old. This was a very pleasing result as the nest boxes at Tabley had only been erected in December 2009 and the early part of 2010 respectively.

John was also conducting checks and had found two breeding pairs at Acton Bridge, one in a box that we had modified last February and the other in another comparatively new box that had been put up in October 2009. I went along in the evening to ring a second-year female bird along with her three owlets. Another new breeding site was found in nearby Onston and I will visit the site in July to ring the young.

A quick dash out on Monday evening resulted in another new breeding female at a new breeding location South of Winsford. This box had been erected in October 2009 and although it has been used as a roost this was the first time that breeding has taken place. The young have only just been hatched and I will return in five or six weeks time to check upon their progress.