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, it now also features wildlife and work posts, explaining how we manage the NNR for both wildlife and people.

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Monday 19 September 2016

12/09/16 - Team work at NDC

Despite the hot temperatures recently our team have managed to make a further dint in the ever growing job list, with a number of days spent working across the site. Fantastic progress has been made at North Duffield Carrs, with several days spent strimming and spraying the path down to the hides, trimming back the hedges, and clearing the willows from in front of the hides for the benefit of our visitors. Willow scrub was also cleared from the Ings meadows which unfortunately provides perches and nesting sites for predators – notably Carrion Crows.

One of the other big jobs was to 'top' the Hawthorns along the river bank fence line, to keep them small and compact for our breeding birds such as Reed Buntings and Linnets, and again to prevent Crows using them for nesting/perching. 

Another big task was then tackled, which saw several of the team wade across the water to strim the island at the ‘top pond’. Each year we clear the vegetation off the island to keep the water an open and attractive place for the first returning waterfowl, which also like to loaf in the safety of the island once it’s been cut. With glorious blue skies and sunshine all day we were fortunate to see plenty of wildlife whilst busy working, Brown Hawkers and Ruddy Darters zipped over the island, whilst Peacocks fed on the Water Mint and thistles, and this year’s toads and frogs battled their way through the cut vegetation.

Finally, the team have also been busy helping repair the damage to our swan pipes caused by the winter floods, as well as the more regular and ongoing tasks such as replacing worn mesh, servicing the doors and strimming out the vegetation. Due to the recent hard work, over the last few weeks we have been able to start our autumn waterfowl ringing in style, with two catches in the North Duffield pipe accounting for a total of 45 Mallards, 4 Gadwall and 2 Shoveler – making it one of our better years for catching our two key target species (Gadwall and Shoveler), with totals of 35 and 18 respectively.

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