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    Arable farmland as habitat

    As a farmer I am an enthusiatic provider of habitat. We need to produce food but 10% plus of this farm is given over to wildflower habitats (annual and perennial), rough grass, scrub, woodland and water or wetland. I have also been minimizing cultivation, returning crop residues and doing all I...
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    Ringing near Gifford, winter 21-22

    Mist netting at Site 2, lower site, 23.10.21 First visit of our 2021-22 winter programme. Blackbird new 2 retrap 1 Blue tit new 1 retrap Chaffinch new 4 retrap Dunnock new 1 retrap Great tit new...
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    Ringing near Gifford, winter 20-21

    Whoosh netting at rape bait station, site 1, 6.10.20 Goldfinch new 18 retrap 1 Linnet new 3 retrap First catch of the 20-21 "winter" programme. Mist netting will wait a little longer till more birds are using the feed stations. Poor weather/too busy last week to try to catch when a large...
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    Ringing near Gifford, Winter 19-20

    Whoosh netting at rape bait station, site 1, 27.9.19 A decent flock has been drawn to feed on a fantastic stand of cornflower adjacent to the feed station, with significant numbers tempted by rape onto the catching area. Had hoped there would be some migrant linnet with this goldfinch flock...
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    Ringing near Gifford, Winter 18-19

    Whoosh netting at rape bait station, site 1, 30.9.18 Linnet new 5 retrap 2 We often get a flock feeding at this time of year and wonder if they are migrants passing through - but never have time to catch them. 30+ were present on Friday when I returned from a short absence and...
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    Loss of invertebrates

    In the UK, and also reported by a recent paper from Germany, invertebrates have declined sharply in recent decades. I have been making great efforts to try to stop this over the last 15 years or so, establishing wildflower strips and meadows. I thought things were going quite well, with these...
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    Ringing near Gifford, Winter 2017-18

    First session of the new "winter" season. We have had a flock of 130-150 birds in the vicinity of the rape bait. These are almost entirely goldfinch with a maximum of 3 linnet seen. Initially these fed on wild flowers - knapweed, thistles and especially cornflower which has been super-abundant...
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    Ringing near Gifford, Winter 16-17

    Our winter mist netting programme for farmland birds has started again. At the feed station at Site 1 we have adjusted the protocol in response to a change in feed provision. Previously all provided food took the form of artificial feed mainly from feeders along a farm track. Now a strip of...
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    Leg flagged peewit

    We ringed and leg flagged two broods of peewit the other day (hopefully two more broods to do). This is our third year - and we re-sighted one of the first year's birds last year. The aim is to improve collection of information on movement, site-fidelity, and survival over just ringing alone. We...
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    Ringing near Gifford, Winter 15-16

    On 11th October,2015 we had a pre-season session mist netting at Site 1. We were prioritizing catching redwing, using a tape lure. We caught Blue tit new 5 retrap 2 Chaffinch new 1 retrap Goldcrest new 2 retrap Great tit new retrap 1 Goldfinch new 3 retrap Long-tailed tit new 13...
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    Western Australia, Peel inlet, Greenshank

    These photos were taken on the 7th October at Coodanup. After much peering at photos on the web, we are a little curious what others think of these birds. The single bird in the left hand photo is clearly a greenshank. The pair in the other, poor, photo look like non-breeding greenshank - fairly...
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    Western Australia, Perth, Herdsman's Lake

    We have been mystified by this one - particularly the spotting on the underside of the tail which is not often shown in bird books (except raptors). We think this bird might have been newly fledged. It appeared to be begging loudly, though we didn't see it being fed, unfortunately. In that...
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    Western Australia, Wearne Rd, N.Bannister, Songlark

    We think this is a male Rufous Songlark, but it isn't very rufous ! Is that just the light ? Sorry, the flying bird almost escaped the frame :-) We discount female Brown Songlark on the black bill, are our books right on that ? Mike.
  14. C

    Western Australia, SE of Peel Inlet, Q Brown Falcon ?

    Is this a Brown Falcon ? Many thanks, Mike.
  15. C

    Western Australia, Canning Dam

    This is a horror of a picture, which is probably the only reason we are having difficulty. Is it a fantail - either grey or willie wagtail ? If it is, we are not worried which - we just want to eliminate anything else, but we cannot find any real contenders with that hood pattern. Thanks, Mike.
  16. C

    Western Australia, Serpentine Falls poss Golden Whistler

    Is this an immature Golden whistler ? It is showing rufous on the primary coverts (and poss alula) but we can't see any on the primaries. The throat is pretty dark too. Slater shows imms as having a light coloured bill, unlike this, but other guides don't appear to agree on that. Cheers, Mike.
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    Western Australia, Peel Inlet, Coodanup; Weebill/Thornbill

    This was in dense scrub beside Peel inlet in Coodanup Reserve (Nairns) on 7/Oct/2014. We think it is a Weebill but is it too speckly about the head are the legs too dark or does the bird just look odd in this light ? Thanks, Mike.
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    Western Australia, John Forrest NP, poss Rufous Whistler

    We thought this was a rufous whistler but the bill is light it isn't very rufous. So, is it a juvenile ? We are not too clued up on time of breeding season. This was shot on 2/10/14, are plenty juveniles fledged by then ? it looks quite a strong bird, not obviously fluffy and new out the nest...
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    Snake, Western Australia, Dunsborough

    Hi, Can anyone tell us what this snake is ? We estimated it was about 1.5m long, had we stretched it out. Most of it is in the photos. It was being mobbed by a red wattlebird. Many thanks, Mike.
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    Ringing near Gifford, winter 14-15

    The winter programme opened this year with a whoosh netting session. A decent flock of birds has been in the area since before harvest, with a field of rape next door being a big draw. Feeding started about a month ago. Whoosh netting at rape bait station, site 1, 21/10/14 Linnet new 24...
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    Western Australia, Perth area 2

    Hi again, To start with we thought the bird in these three images, taken on 29/9/14 near Bell's rapids, was a Gerygone, but the smudge on the face looks wrong. Can anyone help ? Thanks again, Mike.
  22. C

    Western Australia, Perth area

    Hi Folks, Here are some queries from Western Australia, all around Perth. First two images we think are tree martin from King's Park in Perth taken on 28/9/14. A little doubt sown by the amount of colouration on the breast - anybody disagree ? Next two, same time and place - golden whistler ...
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    Another Dragonfly ID, East Lothian, Scotland

    Is there any way to ID emerging dragonflies as shown here ? They are a lot easier to examine/photograph than many high speed movers ! This was shot on 3rd August 2014 in E.Lothian, Scotland over one of my ponds. The plant is branched bur-reed, Sparganium erectum. The diagonal markings on the...
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    Perth, Australia

    We will be visiting Perth in early October and wondered if anybody has contacts who might be happy to host us for some ringing experience. Thanks, Mike.
  25. C

    Ringing near Gifford Winter 2013-14

    Straight into full swing at site 2 on Saturday. This is a wild bird cover site, with two or three feeders added last winter. The wild bird cover was almost non-existent last winter - absolutely typical locally following the dreadful summer - and we only ringed 47 birds in total. Our project aims...
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