If you go down to the woods today…

…you might be slightly disappointed!

For me, an integral part of ringing is nest recording, and I have a small Pied flycatcher study with 60 nest boxes. Today I made my first check of the year to assess what the timing of the season is going to be like as it can vary quite a bit from year to year. I like to get a first egg laying date for all my boxes for all species; usually just Blue tit, Great tit and Pied flycatcher.  I thought it was a little early but it was possible that I would have one or two nests with Great tit eggs.  It was not to be – although I had a couple of tit nests fully lined.

I wasn’t really disappointed however as I had a male Pied flycatcher singing by one box; the first of the year is always a thrill.  I also had a pair chuntering at me near another favoured box.    There was not much birdsong in the wood as I didn’t arrive until noon; some male Redstarts however put on a show at the edge of the wood.   I don’t expect to get them in a nest box as they always seem to prefer a natural site.    I will be back next weekend when I expect things will have got going on the egg front and things will look a bit more exciting in my note book!

Anne Middleton, 24 April 2016