At the beginning of the year, Lundy was reaccredited as part of the network of British and Irish Bird Observatories after a gap of almost 50 years. In the Observatory's first year of operation, the impressive total of 4,473 individuals of 61 species was ringed – only just shy of the all-time record of 4,924 set in 2009. Had it not been for prolonged unsettled weather in October and November, making use of mist-nets all but impossible on many days during this peak period for autumn migration, the 2009 total would almost certainly have been surpassed. There were nevertheless record annual totals for five species: Storm Petrel (551), Golden Plover (5), Jack Snipe (20), Snipe (119) and Woodcock (15) – all of these owing to a significant expansion of nocturnal survey work, including intensive use of thermal imaging equipment. Other notable totals included 66 Skylark (the highest number of fully grown individuals ever ringed on the island) and 1,004 Blackcap. Ongoing studies of the island's breeding Manx Shearwater, Starling, Wheatear and House Sparrow populations once again resulted in substantial numbers of these species being ringed. Among species under-represented in comparison with many previous years, due largely to the adverse conditions for mist-netting in autumn, were Meadow Pipit and Swallow, as well as several thrushes and finches.

There were three additions to the island ringing list – a Barolo Shearwater present within a Manx Shearwater breeding colony in June, a first-year Redshank that was hanging out mainly in Barton Field and the High Street area in mid-October, and a stunning male Waxwing trapped in Millcombe at the end of October. In addition to the Barolo Shearwater and Waxwing, national rarities and scarcities ringed during the year were Dotterel (1), Hoopoe (1), Wryneck (4), Red-eyed Vireo (2), Melodious Warbler (1) and Barred Warbler (1). Other species that are only ringed infrequently on Lundy were Mallard (1), Cuckoo (2), Dunlin (2), Carrion Crow (1), Wood Warbler (1), Fieldfare (2), Ring Ouzel (1), Whinchat (3) and Snow Bunting (1). Pulli (nestlings) of seven species were ringed, as shown by the numbers given in brackets in the table below.

 

 

Number ringed in 2023

Mallard

1

Cuckoo

2

Golden Plover

5

Dotterel

1

Dunlin

2

Woodcock

15

Jack Snipe

20

Snipe

119

Redshank

1

Storm Petrel

(1) 551

Manx Shearwater

(169) 520

Barolo Shearwater

1

Hoopoe

1

Wryneck

4

Red-eyed Vireo

2

Carrion Crow

1

Waxwing

1

Skylark

66

Sand Martin

1

Swallow

(3) 30

House Martin

2

Wood Warbler

1

Willow Warbler

598

Chiffchaff* (*including 1 Siberian Chiffchaff)

*256

Sedge Warbler

80

Reed Warbler

24

Melodious Warbler

1

Grasshopper Warbler

7

Blackcap

1,004

Garden Warbler

10

Barred Warbler

1

Lesser Whitethroat

2

Whitethroat

72

Firecrest

11

Goldcrest

247

Wren

54

Starling

(35) 185

Song Thrush

1

Redwing

5

Blackbird

(2) 31

Fieldfare

2

Ring Ouzel

1

Spotted Flycatcher

38

Robin

67

Pied Flycatcher

19

Redstart

4

Whinchat

3

Stonechat

12

Wheatear

(10) 107

House Sparrow

(54) 84

Dunnock

22

Meadow Pipit

103

Tree Pipit

3

Chaffinch

39

Brambling

1

Greenfinch

1

Linnet

76

Lesser Redpoll

1

Goldfinch

150

Siskin

73

Snow Bunting

1
   

Total number of birds ringed

4,743

   

Total number of species ringed

61

Numbers in brackets indicate pulli – i.e. chicks/nestlings – ringed in 2023. The number of pulli is included in the main total.

Ruppell's Warbler by Mike Langman from The Birds of Lundy

 

For the latest sightings and photos of birds on Lundy visit the
Lundy Bird Observatory website