Friday, June 3, 2016

Fuglebloggen Fra Follebu-Toppengård (Week 2)

This week has been incredible! The chicks have grown so much, and so many of the nests have begun to hatch. This means more work for us but there isn't a single moment where I am not enjoying what I'm doing. Learning how to measure the chicks, handle them, and watching them grow has been an incredible experience and it's just the beginning! This week has been very busy overall. Monday work was canceled because the weather on top of the mountain was too bad to be walking around for long periods of time. Tuesday we walked along all the upper forest paths to check all the nests, we measured some of the nests then and recorded the new babies, all of which are Great Tits. Wednesday we did the nest checks for the lower pastures and measured more chicks that had hatched. Thursday was a fairly simple day. We checked some more nests and I discovered that a female Blue Tit sitting on her nest had a band on her leg, but when I returned later with my supervisor she wasn't in the nest. Friday was extremely busy though. We started by checking up on the Blue Tit again, this time she was on the nest so we caught her to read her band ID. We weighed and measured her bill, head, tarsus, foot, and wing lengths. She had a nest last year that was extremely close to the nest box she is currently in. We continued checking nests, then we measured chicks all day.

We happened to find a nest of Field Farrows tucked away in a spruce tree, we recorded their measurements and weight. They weighed more than the adult Tit and Flycatcher species!

The Coal Tit chicks are almost ready to leave the nest. These birds only need about two weeks before they are old enough to fledge. They all have bands on and are doing great! They are so big compared to the new babies that are hatching. Even though the difference isn't huge the Coal Tits are the smallest of the species we are studying. The chicks started off weight 1-2 grams their first 2 days, and now they weigh between 8-9 grams.

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