20 Jan 2007

Cannon Netting Brent Geese (Missed Opportunity)

Peregrine's Birding Facts:Cormorants can dive to depths of 50 metres in their hunt for fish.

99. Red Legged Partridge

On Wednesday it was a beautiful afternoon and I decided to walk along the shore in front of the house As I got down to the shore there were some Brent Geese flying along including this deformed bird with a crick in its neck!! It's the second time I have seen this particular bird. As I progressed along the shore a Sparrowhawk flew by with Killyleagh castle in the background.

I then noticed a guy in a field with a walkie talkie which I thought a bit odd. He came over to me and then I clicked that this was one of the guys I had been out earlier last year cannon netting the Brent Geese at Murlough in April. He was one of the team that was made up with researchers from Queens University,WWT,and the Brent Goose research group. He warned me that in one of the fields to the left of my house there was some nets set up and to be aware of the bang!! I then asked him whether he had been doing it the previous day as a truck was driving along the road behind my house when there was an almighty bang and I had wrongly assumed that one of his tyres had burst. They had caught and ringed forty geese the day before.

I then made my way back to my house and crept upto a corner of a field overlooking the netting site. You can see the dummies and where the netting has been dug into the ground. Well I waited and waited but no geese I then looked over towards the island in front of the house and I realised why. They had decided on the island instead of the netting site.

The following day there was a massive storm with winds gusting to 80mph and in Dublin upto 100mph. In England ten people died in the storms. The bay in front of the house which is tidal is usually fairly calm had two foot waves. There were also alot of Brent flying left towards the field that had had the nets the previous day.They then landed exactly where the nets had been. A missed opportunity but I think the weather was not the best for cannon netting.Ah well theres always the next time! I then went for a walk out at Killard and saw twenty eight Purple Sandpipers all together. There is twelve in this picture and one Dunlin landing.

This afternoon Penny and I were going to Killard with the dog and as we turned out of our drive there was a covey of fifteen Red Legged Partridge running along the road. A nice boost to my day.

1 comment:

Caerphilly said...

Very good post - most evocative.