10 Sep 2020

Wader ringing in N Wales with SCAN

Due to lockdown restrictions we haven't been able to get out much this year but special permission was obtained to attempt a catch of Ringed Plover with the purpose of colour flagging them to help monitor their movements. The permission stipulated a number of precautions including wearing of face masks when social distancing wasn't possible, using hand sanitiser every fifteen minutes and a restriction on the number of people taking part in the session.

Despite the tide not coming a far up the beach as expected we got a pretty good catch of Ringed Plover with 70+ being colour flogged. This year the flags are lime green above the knee with a red marker ring below the knee. 

The ringing team were split into two wit hone concentrating on the Ringed Plover and the other ringing and processing the Dunlin and Sanderling also caught.

Sanderling are lovely little birds close up and the juveniles are a beautiful spangled combination of monochrome with golden brown.

Sanderling are unusual in that they don't have a hind toe and only have three forward facing ones - a characteristic they share with Kittiwakes! most birds have four toes. I found out recently that the Dutch name for Sanderling translates as 'three toed sandpiper.'

All the Sanderling and Dunlin we caught were juveniles.

A successful trip and hopefully we'll be able to get out more in the autumn / winter if regualtions allow.

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