Monday, 20 August 2012

AT e-mails home

Many thanks to Phil Littler of the North West Norfolk Ringing Group for an update on the marsh harrier seen by Bill Eggleton on Saturday morning:
Apparently this bird was the first to be tagged this summer - birds from 2011 had green with white letters.  It was one of a brood of four at Burgh Castle - just south-west of Great Yarmouth on the 4th of June. 

This is the first sighting of AT since, and is apparently the furthest away to date with the exception of another bird seen recently at RSPB Burton Mere in Cheshire.  40 pulli were ringed this year in the second of a five year programme.   

Thanks to Phil for these pictures:
Amongst the objectives of the programme are:

1. Where do these birds disperse to once they are independant of their adults? Are they a long distant migrant, travelling into Europe and beyond, or do they stay in the local area?

2. Once mature, do they return to their natal area to breed, or do they breed at completely different sites chosen randomly?
3. Once they start to breed, do they breed in the same habitat in which they were raised i.e. reed-beds, Oil seed rape, other crops etc?

For full details of the programme visit the North West Norfolk Ringing Group website.  We'll look forward to seeing if AT stays around Tophill or 'goes home'