Three-toed Woodpecker, Lista
REPORT September 2015
A total of 367 birds were ringed during September on the standardized protocol (1182 birds less than in 2014). In broad terms the month has been warmer and much wetter than average. All months in 2015 have resulted in very low numbers on the standardized trapping and all being below average. September 2015 has had the lowest ringing numbers compared to any other September since the standardized started in 1990.
Weather stastistics at Lista Lighthouse, september 2014 - september 2015
By Aïda López
Regarding the weather, the average temperature has been 13.6 °C (normal average for September is 12.2°C). Total precipitation was 255.6 mm (normal average for September is 134 mm). The highest wind speed was 15.2 m/s (18 Sep), with the average wind being 6.4 m/s.
Although the temperature for all months so far this year has been more or less close to normal (see black and red lines on the figure 1), most of the months have been much wetter (see blue bars). September 2015 has almost reached double precipitation compared to average.
A total of 367 were ringed during September on the standardized protocol, 1182 birds less than in 2014. The total number of ringed birds since the autumn campaign started until 30 September is 1193 birds, 41% compared to average (2942 birds, average since 1990). September 2015 had the poorest ringing numbers so far. It is also noteworthy that all months in 2015 have had lower numbers than 2014 in the standardized trapping, and below normal average for the specific months (except June with many siskins).
41 species have been ringed, 13 less species than in September 2014. Some of the noteworthy species in the nets have been Pygmy Owl, Tengmalm’s Owls and Barred Warbler. The three most abundant species ringed in September have been Blue Tit (131), Tengmalm’s Owl (29) and Goldcrest (28).
Blue tit is one of the species we ring most of at Lista Bird Observatory, on average 1000 individuals per autumn and around 633 individuals for the last 5 Septembers. Almost every blue tit ringed in the autumn is a young bird hatched in the summer the same year. This year we have ringed 131 Blue Tits in September, the lowest number since 2006.
The ringing numbers for most species have been lower than average, especially obvious in tits, finches, pipits, wagtails, warblers, thrushes, flycatchers, sparrows and buntings. Most of the species from these groups are 50% or more down on average. The Linnet is the only species that keeps above average numbers, although none have been caught in September.
The Tengmalm’s Owl has been caught in higher numbers since 2011 and also the first Pygmy Owl since 2011 has been ringed. Rodent populations increase and decrease every 3-4 years in boreal parts of Fennoscandia, which have made the owls have a dispersal pattern every 3-4 years due to their periodical food availability. A total of 29 Tengmalm’s have been ringed in September 2015, the highest number since 4 years ago in 2011. It is also the first year since 2011 that we ringed a Pygmy Owl. This make us think that 2015 might be a peak year on the owl cycle at Lista.
A total of 158 species have been seen in September, (181 in Sep’14 /177 in Sep’13 /166 in Sep’12) 26 new species for the annual log.
Passerines have been seen in low numbers. Some species have appeared in higher numbers than recent years including Mute Swan, Red-breasted Merganser, Common Scoter, Guillemot, Tufted Duck and Common Eider. However, Fulmars have been seen in the lowest numbers since 1990. Manx Shearwaters, Pink-footed Geese, Black-headed Gulls and Kittiwakes are more than 50% down on average observations.
The remarkable species for September have been Pectoral Sandpiper, Pallid Harrier, Three-toed Woodpecker, Eagle Owl, Golden Eagle, Yellow-browed Warbler, Richard’s Pipit and Kingfisher.
Several species have been seen in low numbers in 2015. Still there are a lot of species appearing in normal numbers. Golden Plover is among the species with normal numbers. From Steinodden 27. September 2015. Photo Jan Erik Røer