Saturdays are just great as its when I get up close to birds and study them. It was an epic day ringing with a new species of bird for me and a new species of bird ringed at the site. Whilst setting the nets up recently we have seen this bird flitting up and down the fields, however this particular day I had seen several. We caught one of the birds but not in the net we expected, we actually caught it at the larger feeding station in the net ride closest to the entry of the feeding station.
As you may of noticed the bird I am talking about is the splendid Woodcock, an alien like bird that takes an E size ring.
This great photo taken by my dad really shows there beauty and alien like form properly. You would not see this properly at dawn when it is still reasonably dark, so it was great that we got to study it when the sun was out.
The Woodcock is on the amber list and a conservation concern due to a big decline in recent years. This species of bird is the only species of wader adapted to breeding in woodland, and I suppose it makes sense with it's perfect camouflage.
These birds have a great eye sight, in fact they can see all the way behind their head, upwards and the front of their face because their eyes are so high eyes bulge out so much (as I was saying it was alien like). There brain is sort of upside down to make room for the huge eye. Truly amazing creatures.
Just look at those head markings and the eye. Lots of birds ringed again over the weekend with still quite good numbers of Redwing and Fieldfare about. And another Great Spotted Woodpecker, but the highlight for me has to be the Woodcock.
Even the hairy highland cattle looked impressed by the Woodcock!
Thanks for reading, and I hope you read my next blog as I have a good quiz question for you on Tuesday and it involves a Woodcock of course.