Colour-ringed Little Egrets

Duncan Bye noted two colour-ringed Little Egrets at Wheldrake Ings among the large count of 26 Grey Heron and 16 Little Egret at the Pool hide on the morning of the 23rd July. He has received details back from the ringers:

  • J9 = This bird was ringed by Mid-Lincs RG as a nestling, (sex unknown on 20-May-2015 19:10:00 at North Cotes, Lincolnshire, UK. This bird was also seen at North Duffield Carrs on 26 May by Chris Gomersall, so maybe it has nested in the valley.
  • B9 = This bird was ringed by A V Cross as a nestling, (sex unknown) on 05-Jul-2009 16:50:00 at Penrhyn Castle, Bangor, Gwynedd, UK.

Craig Ralston from Natural England commented:

“It would be useful if everyone could make the effort to check and read off colour-rings from Little Egrets in the valley (and elsewhere) as they colonise the valley and wider area.  Birds in the valley seem to be numbering about 30 at the moment – and we now know that at least six pairs have bred in two locations on the reserve – with possibly breeding taking place at another location.  Hopefully colour-ringed re-sightings such as these will help us keep track on the population as it expands.  It is difficult to know whether the large counts at the moment are in part due to the recent breeding success, are different to the 30+ recorded in mid to late June before birds had fledged or whether, like herons, the young under-go a rapid post breeding dispersal.

We have also just received news of a colour-ringed Heron from the local heronry, ringed in May as a chick, being found long dead in Lincolnshire, fitting in with the pattern of rapid post breeding dispersal out of the natal area – at the same time heron numbers tend to peak on the reserve. Details to follow shortly on the face book site.”