The Dark Room

Monday, 10 June 2019

Sunday morning

Sunday morning I went out ringing with Paul Hawkins. 49 new birds and 8 retraps, our highest total for the site. It looks like a good breeding season as nearly all the birds were 3j (this years young). Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Reed Warbler, Blue Tit, Long tailed Tit and Great Tit all seem to be doing well so far, but only 1 Sedge Warbler though and that was a retrap.

All images below are taken with the Iphone.

 Sedge Warbler


Blue Tit


Tuesday, 4 June 2019

Kestrel and Barn Owl broods

On Sunday late afternoon under licence we ringed 5 Kestrel and 4 Barn Owl broods, which have been using the boxes put up in a very wildlife friendly farmers estate.

All images below were taken on the Cannon 1D MK3.

Barn Owl


After years of enjoying Kestrels and Barn Owls in the field, it was a real pleasure and experience, thanks Paul R.

Monday, 27 May 2019

Jackdaw pulli

 Saturday mornings ringing session with Paul Hawkins produced  2 Reed Warbler - our first of the season at our new site, Common Whitethroat, x2 Greenfinch, x2 Robin - both 3j and a couple of Lesser Whitethroats made up the numbers.

Monday 27th May

PH, Louise and myself went out with Paul Roper to colour ring a brood of young Jackdaw. Three gorgeous - see below image,were ringed and coloured ringed as part of a ongoing project.

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Ringing chicks

Once again it's been a busy week as last Sunday I was with PH ringing Common, Lesser Whitetroats, Blackcaps, Great tit and a retrap  male Bullfinch that was ringed back in March.

16th May

Made a second visit to Netherhall with PRO, PH and some of the Southern colour ringing group to colour ring Little Egret chicks. 12 Little Egret and 2 bonus Grey Heron were ringed.

Some birds were to small to colour ring.

Little Egret with Me and my happy face.

Grey Heron, please pass on sightings of any colour ringed bird.

Saturday 18th May

Out with PRO, PH and DMo to ring some pullis waders sadly the numbers were very low due to a number of reasons, hopefully 2nd broods will have a better chance?

Ringed Plover above, just 2 were ringed and just 1 Lapwing!

Thanks again lads.......

Monday, 6 May 2019


29th April

Went along to Lea Valley water works NR to help out Paul Roper with a ringing demo along with Paul Hawkins and Louise. We processed 36 new birds Reed Warbler, Whitethroat, Blackcap, Reed Bunting, Cetti's Warbler and a few Greenfinch added a nice mixed catch, Great to see and speak to some of the local school children that attended and show them some of the birds that we ringed.

Cetti's Warbler

In between a couple of ringing sessions I've added a few new birds for the patch year list. With Wheatear, Little Owl and Swift being the latest birds, which puts me on 101 for the year. Didn't see a Little Owl on the patch last year!

6th May 

A slow session this morning with PH with only 11 birds ringed. Nice to ring our first Lesser Whitethroat of the season though.

Lesser Whitethroat

Sunday, 28 April 2019


A short session before work on Friday morning with Hawky produced a real stunner in the first round of checking the mist nets. A cracking Adult male Common Cuckoo was the first bird to be extracted out of the fine net. This summer visitor (April-Sept) is normally heard and rarely seen well, so it's definitely one of my highlights so far this year to been able to extract and ring one. Hopefully it can be resighted again because that's what this is all about, collecting data.

A few Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Dunnock, Blue Tit and Great tit were also ringed.

Thanks again Paul

Monday, 22 April 2019

A good mix

The last three Saturdays I've been out ringing twice with PH at our site and then on the 20th April with PRO up at Hertfordshire. Blackcap have been the most common bird ringed over the three sessions followed by Chiffchaff. It's been a good mixture of common birds topping up the figures each week but over the next few weeks/months hopefully we get more passage migrants and maybe something a little bit special?

This Adult male Jay below was 1 of 2 ringed on Saturday 20th April.