With a grey damp day I have crunched some numbers for the banding at the Zoo over the last year. With a total of 476 new birds banded it was the third lowest total in the 15 years we have been banding there. Only 2011 with 466 and 2002 with 213 being lower. This was probably due to the mild winter with several species esp. Silvereye and Greenfinch not coming into town.
|Ranking numbers in red indicate change of position from last year.
Other numbers in blue indicate significant changes.
Species caught for the year ranked from highest to lowest ( recaps in brackets)
No 1 Silvereye - 100 (68) Usually in the No 1 spot but only just held it this year. Lowest yearly total in the last 14 years and below half of both the 5 and 15 year average. There were also low totals over most of our other sites.
No 2 Greenfinch - 97 (24) A below average year, similar to the last couple but well below earlier ones.
No 3 House Sparrow - 88 (34) Slightly below average new birds but quite a good recapture rate.
No 4 Goldfinch - 63 (4) Up from 5th spot the last two years, prior to that it usually ranked between 9 & 11. Our biggest yearly total and well above both the 5 and 15 year average. Most birds were caught at the stream net site, especially at our last session for the year.
No 5 Chaffinch - 39 (2) Down from 4th, numbers exactly on the 5 year average but below the 15 year. A bird banded at the Zoo and recaptured at Houghton Bay is now our oldest Chaffinch recap at any site.
No 6 Blackbird - 33 (3) about an average number of new birds but a low recapture rate.
No 7 Tui - 17 (2) Above both the 5 & 15 year average.
No 8 Fantail - 14 (0) about an average new bird tally but disappointing not to get any recaps.
No 9 Dunnock - 14 (7) About average.
No 10 Grey Warbler - 6 (0) Above average new birds but like Fantails no recaps.
No 11 Starling - 6 (3) Below half of the 5 year average and only a fraction of the 15 year. Totals influenced by very high numbers in the first few years of banding at the Zoo.
No 12 Song Thrush - 3 (1) Exactly average for both 5 & 15 year.
No 13 Kingfisher - 1 (0) The usual 1 bird.
No 14 Yellowhammer - 0 (1) Very few birds about but the solo recap was a cracker, more than doubling the age of our previous oldest.
We also caught 1 Magpie, our first for a number of years and our first ever Eastern Rosella caught at the Zoo.