Saturday, 15 September 2012

How we will monitor movements

As you may have already guessed from the name of the blog and previous post, the idea of this project is to colour-ring Black-headed Gulls.

Through fitting the gulls with coloured rings which have letters and numbers engraved on them, we will be able to track movements of specific birds through re-sightings and reports.

There are similar projects ongoing across Europe and birdwatchers who keep an eye out for colour-ringed gulls.  You just have to look at some of the links I have listed on the right of this blog to realise how popular gull ringing has become.

Each project is assigned a different combination of colour and codes, so when a colour-ringed Black-headed Gull is reported via, the European coordinator for small gull colour-ringing will be able to pass the information on to the relevant project leads.

The NI Black-headed Gull Colour-ringing Project has been assigned orange rings with a black four alpha-numeric code, starting with number "2", e.g. 2AAA.  It is also important that the colour-ring is fitted to the bird's left leg.
I have already been contacted by observers in Sweden and Germany with reports of ringed birds.  Unfortunately though, these aren't from my project as I haven't started ringing yet!  The bird pictured was ringed in England and re-sighted in southern Sweden.

It would be fantastic to receieve reports from continental Europe of one of "my" birds in the future.  Fingers crossed!

Photo by Joakim Karlsson

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