Welcome to the LDV NNR ringing blog, this blog is designed to share the experiences, findings and tales from a group of dedicated ringers. We specialise in conservation orientated research projects, largely focusing on wildfowl, waders, owls and birds of conservation concern, in and around the Vale of York NNR's.

NB - Whilst the purpose of this blog was initially designed to cover our nationally important wildfowl ringing activities, regular readers may have noticed the increase in posts detailing wildlife found across the valley (ranging from plants, fungi, butterflies, dragonflies & other invertebrates). Ringing posts will hopefully resume over the winter months, and will run alongside wildlife and work posts.

Monday, 16 November 2015

14/11/15 - Cetti surprise

Regular and long-term followers may remember that this time last year one of our volunteer bird ringers, Mike Jackson, caught and ringed a Cetti’s Warbler at Wheldrake Ings. This was the 12th record of the species in the valley and the 5th individual to be ringed on the reserve. Amazingly Mike has again come up trumps once again – catching not one but two Cetti’s Warblers recently, and just days apart (31st October and 3rd November). Local birder Duncan Bye also heard a probable calling in the reed bed at Wheldrake Ings on the 1st November. Winter records (late October to March/April) seem to be the norm and the species has now been annual in the valley during the last five years, with Wheldrake Ings being a particularly favoured location – accounting for 11 of the 14 records so far. 

Cetti's Warbler - Wheldrake Ings - 31/10/15

Cetti’s Warbler are best described as a skulking bird that inhabits dense/overgrown vegetation near water, and can often prove very difficult to see. They usually make their presence known with loud bursts of song and explosive metallic clanging notes. The first glimpse will probably be of a dark, rather stocky warbler diving for cover, with short wings and a full, rounded tail. They are likely to be benefitting from the mild weather we are experiencing at the moment, so one to look for (or at least listen out for!) this autumn/winter.

Monday, 2 November 2015

Hot off the press!

Hot off the press! The Lower Derwent Valley 2016 calendar has now arrived and is available for a small fee of £7.99 at the NNR Base Bank Island, or feel free to leave us a message on here or our Facebook page with your details and we can arrange collection or post one out to you. 


This calendar has been produced by the Friends of the Lower Derwent Valley, a small charitable trust which has recently been set up to help further the conservation work, research and promotion of the importance of the area. Working with Natural England and our reserve team, the ‘friends of’ group (comprising some of our volunteers) have taken on a fund raising role to support some of these activities, and have produced this calendar to try and raise funds to further the aims of the group. This calendar features images taken across the site throughout the last two years, many of which have featured on our Facebook page, below are the three images which have been chosen for the front cover:

 Roe Deer - North Duffield Carrs
 Common Toad - NNR Base
Mallard - Bank Island

Please get in touch if you’d like to purchase one, calendars are one of the Christmas presents that everyone needs, and by purchasing one of ours your money will go straight back into furthering the conservation work undertaken throughout the area.

Below are the images in the order of which they appear in the calendar:

 January: Jay - Thornton Ellers
 February: Barn Owl - Bank Island
 March: Bank Vole - NNR Base
 April: Gadwall - North Duffield Carrs
 May: Adder - Skipwith Common NNR
 June: Red-tailed Bumblebee - NNR Base
 July: Black Darter - Skipwith Common NNR
 August: Red-legged Shield Bug - Skipwith Common NNR
 September: Grass Snake - Skipwith Common NNR
 October: Common Inkcap - Skipwith Common NNR
 November: Kingfisher - Thornton Ellers
 December: Whooper Swans - North Duffield Carrs