Snipe Ringing ~ 8th February 2015 ~
Yesterday evening (Saturday) Martin, Liz, Andy and I headed to Fleet Pond at 7pm to set the nets for this morning's session. We set all the usual nets - the straight double and dog-legged triple but we also set the extra double as we had high hopes after the last session (20 birds of which 18 were new)!
This morning dawned bright and early and Martin got there first to open the nets and then Liz, Andy and I got to the site for 6.15 to join Martin and Ian joined us shortly after. We donned our waders and then headed down to the marsh with all the kit.
Approximately 45 minutes before sunrise seems to be the optimal time for heading out onto the marsh and despite it being very clear with a very bright moon (not ideal conditions by any means), at just after 6.40 we decided to give it a go. When we were setting nets last night, there was a lot of evidence that Snipe had been roosting all around the nets - lots of poo on the ground and the odd feather - so we were very hopeful of a good catch this morning.
As we walked towards the nets we flushed a few birds, some flew straight over the top of the nets, or even round them. We quickly extracted those that had been caught in the nets and returned to base, where we ringed and processed them. In total we caught 11 Snipe, including 1 re-trap and a Song Thrush (quite unexpected)!