29 October 2015

Re-trapping Indian Reed Warblers – Sabkhat Al Fasl

During our ringing sessions at Sabkhat Al Fasl we catch good numbers of Indian Reed Warblers. In almost two years ringing at the location we have ringed 147 birds. Out of these we have had 27 retraps totaling 19% of the birds ringed. Some of these birds have been retrapped soon after their original capture but others have been caught after a prolonged period. Whilst ringing on 16 October we recaught the very first Indian Reed Warbler we trapped (in fact the first bird we trapped of any species) making it a total of 617 days from original capture to retrap.  The weekend previously we recaught a bird ringed on the first days ringing at the site after 610 days. Indian Reed Warblers are meant to be resident but the large number caught at our site combined with the small retrap rate of these birds makes a strong case for birds passing through our location at least during some periods of the year. Obviously the long period between retraps of some of the birds do show they are resident in the trapping area. Many birds probably only move locally but we have had two interesting sightings of ringed birds away from their original ringing locations I different countries (see ringing page tab at top of website for details). As can be seen from the photos below both birds have freshly moulted their flight and tail feathers showing Indian Reed Warblers moult in September and October after the breeding season.