Thursday, 6 May 2010

Ringed Turnstone report results

Following three ringed Turnstone sightings at St Mary's Island which I reported in February 2010, I have received the following response from Robin Ward -

"Thank you for taking the time to record and report via the EURING web site your sightings of the colour-ringed Turnstone ‘Y//RG’, ‘W//WY’ and ‘Y//WR’ on 20th February 2010. The birds were all ringed by Durham University (in fact myself).

The bird ‘Y//RG’ was ringed on the 29th January 1999 at Amble, Northumberland (BTO metal ring number SX83509) as an adult. It has only this past winter been reported wintering away from Amble, with sightings also at St Mary’s Island in August 2009 and regularly from December through to March 2010.

The bird ‘Y//WR’ was ringed on the 19th February 1999 at Cresswell, Northumberland (BTO metal ring number SX83524) as an immature (born in summer 1998). It has previously been reported away from Cresswell, with a sighting also at St Mary’s Island in September 2009.

The bird ‘W//WY’ was ringed on the 3rd February 2000 at the causeway to St Mary’s Island (BTO metal ring number SX83311) as an adult (born previous to summer 1999). It has still yet to be recorded away from the St Mary’s Island area since your sighting of this individual at the latter locality back in September 2009.

I will forward your sightings to the British Trust for Ornithology for inclusion within the National Bird Ringing Scheme database which is used by Government agencies (e.g. Natural England) and national organisations (e.g. RSPB) in their work for bird conservation.

For your information, I've attached some text from a recent ringing recovery analysis I undertook of the existing Teesmouth datasets. Teesmouth was the main study site of Durham University’s Shorebird Team, this being extended to the Amble – St Mary’s Island coast during the period 1996-2001 whilst undertaking studies for Northumbrian Water Ltd in relation to improvements to the sewage discharge systems.

Many thanks again for taking the time to record and report your sightings.
Turnstone originating from Greenland and northeast Canadian breeding grounds, moult, winter and occur on passage (to Iberia and Mauritania) in Britain (Smit & Piermsa 1989). Birds from the breeding population in Finland pass through the Wash and probably other eastern estuaries in eastern England on their way to Iberia and northwest Africa (Branson et al 1978).

A few Turnstone summer at Teesmouth, but numbers begin increasing in July beginning with non-breeding immatures. These birds usually moult then remain for the winter at Teesmouth. Colour ringing of wintering Teesmouth birds has shown the species to be faithful to the moulting and wintering site used in their first year (RMW pers obs.), with very few individuals having been seen or recovered elsewhere.

Most adults return in August to moult and winter, together with the first juveniles. They are all most likely to be from the Greenland and arctic Canadian (rather than Scandinavian) breeding populations; single recoveries exist from Greenland & arctic Canada. Single recoveries of Teesmouth winter birds have been reported on autumn and spring passage from Iceland, whilst a further two birds were originally ringed as juveniles in autumn in western Norway. Some Greenland birds are known to migrate via Norway to their winter quarters around the North Sea (Branson et al 1978). A proportion of the Teesmouth wintering birds moult on the Dutch coast, as revealed by several autumn recoveries from Vlieland; some Greenland birds are known to moult on the Wadden Sea, many moving westward to winter in Britain (Branson et al 1978).

Most Turnstone leave Teesmouth in April or May. Some passage birds occur at this time with recoveries from northwest England, Glamorgan, Norfolk and one from Mauritania in April; birds at these localities are known to originate from Nearctic breeding grounds (Clark et al 1990, Clark 1989; Smit & Piersma 1989). At least single recoveries from northwest England and Norfolk refer to wintering birds.

The annual pattern of use by Turnstone of Seal Sands at low tide identifies it to be of key importance to the passage populations and, comparatively little used by the Teesmouth wintering population. The broad range within weekly low tide counts during passage periods is both a reflection of turnover rates and variable site usage between years.

Extract from:

Ward, R.M., Evans, P.R. & O’Connell, M.J. (2003) Study of long term changes in bird usage of the Tees Estuary. WWT Research Report to English Nature. Slimbridge, U.K.."

1 comment:

Codders said...


I was the one who reported the Turnstone Y/WR from Creswell which was ringed on 19 Feb 99 when it was previously seen in Sep 2009.