29 June 2012

Bahrain – Ringing at Al Jarrim Island (South)

After ringing on Al Jarrim (middle) we went by Ali’s boat to Al Jarrim (south) to try to ring Lesser Crested Tern chicks. As we were setting up camp Nicole caught an adult Bridled Tern that had become caught up in a discarded fishing net. She managed to release the bird before it died and I ringed it and released it. Luckily it was completely healthy and flew off happily to join the many thousands of other birds. This was one lucky bird as if Nicole had not found it; it would have died in the net.
Bridled Tern (adult)
Bridled Tern (adult)
Bridled Tern (adult)
When we got to the island we could not see many Lesser Crested Terns but after disembarking the boat and setting up camp we should see a couple of reasonably large crèches of Tern chicks. We employed our method of herding the tern chicks onto the beach and walking them down the beach to our corral. This corral was made out of bamboo sticks and garden netting, with the netting being covered with sand at the bottom. Here would could take them out and place them in baskets and move them up to the ringing station for ringing. This proved very easy this year as we had the experience of doing this last year. We managed to ring about 871 Lesser Crested Tern chicks with four ringers, of which I ringed 285 birds. We collected three large discarded, or lost, nets, and took them back to Bahrain for disposal so they would not catch and kill any more terns. We had a great day out, with a good team, and managed to catch and ring almost 1000 birds in the day ending on 977 birds. We are coming back on 6th July, weather permitting, for another attempt and ringing terns but will be concentrating more on Bridled Terns next time.
Ali's boat
Tern Corral
Lesser Crested Tern chicks in the Tern Corral
The days ringing totals