Thursday, April 30, 2015

And this was April

As soon as it started, Wood Warblers (Phylloscopus sibilatrix) started to appear all along the country. While in a 'normal' spring we get really low numbers and the species is quite scarce and almost restricted to coast, in springs with easterly winds is possible to see a lot of them everywhere. Looking back to the past 4 years, 2012 and 2014 are what I would understand as variation in a 'normal spring'. 2013 was a  good year, specially after the strong eastern winds in late April.
This year, after continuous easterly winds during April, we got a heavy influx of sibilatrix, and it was specially noticeable inland, were it was sometimes the commonest migrant passerine!

maps with data from 1st March to 1st June, all years

So, where I use to ring inland, I trapped 2 Wood Warblers in different dates, The first one was trapped in a very interesting morning, specially for the variety of species.

This Little Egret (Egretta garzetta) was the first one I trap in my place. I aged it as an adult (EURING 6) for the relatively fresh plumage, squared primary coverts, primaries and secondaries, and well-developed ornamental feathers.

Next days I mainly spent my time in the reeds, ringing Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica) roosts. I got some interesting other species too!, specially when I spent de whole day.

Sand Martin (Riparia riparia)
Yellow Wagtail (Motacilla flava). Ssp.iberiae with some
'italian influences'
Second year (EURING 5) male Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra)
Adult (EURING 6) male Whinchat (Saxicola rubetra) 
Whinchat (S.rubetra) & Stonechat (Saxicola rubicola)

The second Wood Warbler (P.sibilatrix) came on 25/04, when hundreds had been seen all along the country. But before it, I trapped two Scops Owls (Otus scops), one adult (EURING 6) and a second year (EURING 5).

Adult (EURING 6)
Second year (EURING 5)

The eastern winds also provided some Red-throated Pipits (Anthus cervinus) -a nice one in my local patch-, and some other typical eastern species, but the main affected, who knows exactly why, was the Wood Warbler.

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