Saturday, October 3, 2009

Ashdod ringing & gulls

This morning (3/10/09) I went ringing at Ashdod. This is my main ringing site, in a small wetland surrounded by trees and bushes, about 30 km south of Tel Aviv close to the Med. coast.

We had a fine morning - good weather, nice catch, great variety and pleasent company. The most numerous species ringed were Willow Warblers, Blackcaps and Reed Warblers.
Among other species ringed were Great Reed, Savi's and Marsh Warblers, Tree Pipits, and my first Bluethroat of the season.

Tree Pipit

Great Reed Warbler

It was nice to observe active passerine migration first thing in the morning, mainly of Tree and Red-throated Pipits and Yellow Wagtails. Other nice birds seen in the area were several Red-backed Shrikes and a Wryneck.
Thanks to Shlomo and Re'a for their help with the ringing.

After closing the nets down, we went to 'Yavne 4' ponds near Ashdod. This is the prime gull site in Israel. There were only 100 gulls though, most Baltic but also some 1cy Armenians and Caspians. Among the Baltics there was one adult carrying a Finnish colour ring CV21. This is a very familiar bird. It had been visiting Ashdod for at least five previous years, and has been already observed several times earlier this autumn.

Baltic Gull

Shorebirds showed in very small numbers. Of note were three Marsh Sands and four Temminck's Stints. A Lesser Grey Shrike gave good views.

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