Friday, January 20, 2012

Northern Reinforcements

Northern Reinforcements

Yesterday I was joined by Yoav, Yosef, Ron, Rafi, Avishai, Meidad, Itai and Liron for the third ringing session at wadi Hayon.
It felt quite strange to be "joined" by ringers as Yosef (my supervising A license) who taught me how tell a Marsh warbler apart from Reed, or Yoav who first showed me how to do it right with larks, I was paying back ringing ticks big time…

Since we had such an excellent team we opened 540 (!!!) meters of mist nets (compared to 90 meters in the last two times), however there was just slight (non-corresponding) increase in the number of birds.
Yet we had a very satisfying total of 30 birds:

Temmink's Larks, one of them was a recapture from the first session.
Bar-tailed Larks
Desert Larks
Trumpeter Finches
Spunish Sparrows
And a single Mourning Wheatear (Tick for me).

There was no sign of any Thick-billed Larks today.

While we were taking down all the nets it started raining, not hard enough for a flashflood, but sure helpful to all the drying bushes. Itai and I seemed to be the only ones enjoying the rain; unfortunately the smell of rain in the desert is one thing that can't get through blog posts.

For me the day wasn't over then, I headed with Rafi up north to join Yosef for ringing at aWhite Wagtails roost. We had only few birds because of the rain, but in that same reedbed there are also few hundreds of Spanish (when you don’t catch any) Sparrows,Corn Buntings and dozens of Marsh Harriers roosting so it was quite a show.
We ringed mere six wet birds, but one of them was a Common Rosefinch with very very (very) strange yellow colors, never seen anything like that, photos (of my fingers holding it) on Yosef's blog.

I was too preoccupied (very lazy) to take many photos with so many enthusiastic pro photographers around, so for more cool photos and for their accounts of the day you may visit their blogs:

Ron's website (in Hebrew)

The forecast shows there is good chance for rain on Sunday, but since rain in these areas is usually local and unpredictable I'm waiting with fingers crossed for some flashfloods (and for a Dunn's lark invasion that follows of course…)


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