Monday, 21 June 2010

Flatey I

After the RTD work had been completed I was suppose to travel north with Ib & Jim to help with Common Scoter catching, whilst Ævar met up with Sverrir Thorstensen on Flatey Island, but I was also needed on Flatey to help out with ringing & surveying of waders & seabirds. So on the 10th, along with Ævar & Sverrir – we travelled to Styikkisholmer to catch the Baldur ferry across to the island.


The ‘‘research vessel’’ or the ‘‘ship’’ as Sverrir calls it – being loaded off the Baldur ferry!

The trip to Flatey was very similar to last years visit, the only difference is that was in July – so it was nice to visit the island in June and see nests, eggs & small chicks from species that I ringed the pulli of last year.

The main job on Flatey was to check hundreds of nesting chambers for Black Guillemot nests. This forms part of Ævar’s project on the Black Guillemot (now in it’s 37th year!) of recording nest contents, ringing the adults & then ringing the chicks at a later date.


Often whilst searching for the Black Guillemots, we came across nesting Eiders & Mallard, which we attempted to catch the adults on the nest by using hand nets.


And the ducklings received rings too! It felt somewhat strange to be ringing 1 day old Mallard chicks! The Icelandic ringing scheme have developed a special ring that fit the ducklings.


Another one of the major jobs was to find as many Snipe nests as possible, so that we could record the nest contents, catch the adults on the nest & ring the chicks. By the end of the trip we had located 30 nests, ringed/recapped 17 adults & 31 chicks.


Once the surveying of the Black Guillemots & Snipe was complete, we could then begin to survey other nearby islands for other species – mainly Fulmar, Puffin & Shag.


As you can see we like to camouflage ourselves when doing this!

Throughout the 11 days – 471 birds were caught of 18 species, 361 new & 110 recaps.

Ringed Plover290
Black Tailed Godwit30
Red Necked Phalarope111
Arctic Tern41
Black Guillemot619
Meadow Pipit430
White Wagtail330
Snow Bunting50
For more photos from this trip, see here
Thanks to Ævar, Sverrir, Ib & Jim.

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