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 Post subject: Sand Martin nestlings
PostPosted: Sat May 20, 2017 8:28 pm 
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Lincs Bird Club Member
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Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2004 6:44 pm
Posts: 1584
Location: Market Rasen
I posted last year that Andy Chappell of the Mid-Lincs RG designed and constructed an artificial Sand Martin "bank" at Donington on Bain with considerable financial help from the landowner and manual labour from the rest of the Group. In 2015 only one of the 36 "holes" was occupied and five nestlings were ringed and last year 50 nestlings were ringed. This year, 32 holes are occupied and already over 60 nestlings have been ringed with the potential for many more. It is impossible to access natural nest sites to monitor the young. I believe the only other artificial bank in the County is at Deeping so the data gathered will certainly enhance our knowledge of the breeding success of the species in Lincolnshire.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 3:22 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 29, 2004 7:34 pm
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Location: Swanpool, Lincoln
Artificial banks also at Whisby & Frampton.

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Regards,

Andy.


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PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 5:17 pm 
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Location: Market Rasen
Thanks Andy - do you know whether the nests can be accessed at either site so that BTO Nest Records can be completed?


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PostPosted: Wed May 31, 2017 8:28 am 
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Location: Woodhall Spa
I was intrigued by Stuart's posting and realised I had no idea of when nestlings would appear or be ready to ring....and not just for Sand Martin. 60 nestlings ringed by 20th May: when were the eggs first laid? I've just got round to looking on the BTO web-site [*https://app.bto.org/birdfacts/results/bob9810.htm] and found that there is no answer: data unavailable for date of first clutches.

Perhaps Stuart's data is more significant than I realised - there are only 137 nest records ever - including the 50 from last year?

Congratulations to the Group for their enterprising work.

Rob


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 4:17 pm
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Location: North Hykeham
Unfortunately the artificial nest embankment at Whisby NR has not been utilized since 2013.

Cheers,

Ben


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:05 am 
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The BTO's Bird Facts page that Robert looked at is not very up to date or helpful.

The number of nests records (to the end of 2015) is 9720, rather than 137. See https://www.bto.org/volunteer-surveys/n ... nrs-totals

There is a useful guide to nests, including their timing, available from the BTO https://www.bto.org/volunteer-surveys/nrs/field-guide. This indicates that Sand Martin first egg dates are around mid April; with a combined incubation and fledging period of about 36 days, that would mean flying young soon after 25th May.

Earlier this year, I visited the Nottinghamshire Trust's Attenborough reserve, where they have a combined artificial Sand Martin bank & bird hide, enabling one to view the birds entering holes at very close quarters. The nests there (you can't see the actual nests as a visitor) are monitored by reserve staff, with information provided on noticeboards inside the hide. In Lincolnshire, other Sand Martin banks not already mentioned that I'm aware of are at Deeping Lakes (in use in 2017) and at a Roger Wardle-designed farm wetland at Kirton in Lindsey (no idea of current condition). There are probably others.

It would be an interesting exercise to attempt a complete count of the county's colonies one year. Information submitted to LBC and in the Bird Report is sketchy to say the least. I get the impression that fewer are now using sand quarry faces (but that could be that I don't go to them so often) ... and how many are in wholly natural sites in river banks and so on?


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2017 11:40 am 
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Location: Market Rasen
A quick update - 103 nestlings ringed and about 25 more to do from the first broods. Andy tells me that the survival rate to fledging is virtually 100% - far better than other hirundines.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:27 am 
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North Lincs Bird Recorder
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Location: Louth
I heard that the Sand martin bank at Frampton RSPB was accessed by a weasel two/three years ago and no birds have used it since. Certainly none in evidence when I have been there this year

John

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