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Rain on Our Ringing Parade

torsdag 23. maj 2024
af Mallory Echols

The rain that started during the night seemed to determined to keep our nets closed today. It was still going at the usual 4 a.m. wakeup time and persisted into the mid-afternoon. 

While we occupied ourselves with other work, we could hear the Bee-eaters overheard, though the overcast conditions didn't allow us to see them.

The rain finally stopped, and around 16:00 we were able to safely open the nets in the garden station and catch at least a few birds, including: Common Whitethroat, Spotted Flycatcher, Pied Flycatcher, Chiffchaff, Icterine Warbler, Linnet and Lesser Redpoll. 

Hopefully we'll catch the Wryneck that's been hanging around in the garden, even perching on the nesting box. 

Tomorrow's forecast seems promising for a statisfying day of ringing. 



The Green Wave Finally Slows

onsdag 22. maj 2024
af Lucas

After a very productive few days, the wave of “green species” on DofBasen finally began to slow down today.

While Morten and Henrik were both at home; Michael once again spearheaded the ringing operation with Mallory and Maxim assisting. Comparatively slow to yesterday, we caught 14 individuals (12 new birds and 2 recaptures). The major difference between yesterday and today seemed to be the weather, today the wind was once again quite strong but unfortunately a rain system seems to be making it ways to our area which forced us to close the Lighthouse Garden nets a bit early today. That said, on one of our final rounds of checking the nets in the station garden, we discovered the River Warbler (Flodsanger) in the net for its third consecutive day. Other highlights of the day include Lesser Redpoll and several Spotted Flycatchers (a continued trend from yesterday afternoon where we caught 5 Grå Fluesnapper).


Morning observations were very slow this morning and produced only a few Red-throated Divers moving north, but the most exciting bird of the morning was a very late Common Murre (Lomvie) flying north.

Last, Antonio departed today. We wish him well and safe travels.

Den grønne bølge fortsætter

tirsdag 21. maj 2024

Efter flere dage med grønne arter på Dofbasen og et forår der er kommet godt igen, havde vi selvfølgelig også forventet at få noget godt i dag. Og det lykkedes - lige præcis. 

Mens Morten er hjemme på visit, passede Michael, Maxim, Nino og Mallory haverne. Der var som sådan pænt med fugle, f.eks. flere rødstjerter end de tidligere dage. Det blev også til en rørsanger, kernebider og broget fluesnapper. En indsats for at fange nogle af de lokale bysvaler gav også pote med 3 mærkede. 

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Grå fluesnapper

Trækket står fortsat ret stille, selv om der i dag var lidt mere gang i den. Lucas havde en sydtrækkende hvidbrystet præstekrave og lidt senere fandt Henrik en nordtrækkende mellemkjove - en ventet art, selv om østenvind ikke er hvad vi forbinder med den art om foråret. Det var en fed gammel fugl med køller og det hele. Der kom en del mursejlere ind fra havet og morgenobsen gav også 3 rider og en alm. kjove. 

Vandstanden er fortsat høj i mosen og hele den sydlige del står fortsat under vand. Der holder 2-3 små lappedykkere til og der er fortsat 3 viber og en rødben. Der var dog ikke nye fugle i området i dag. 

The rarity we have been waiting for

tirsdag 21. maj 2024
af Michael

21 may will go in the history books. Not because of the migration, that was pretty slow again. And also not because of the amount we ringed, but the species we've ringed. The ringing was very slow, but around 6:30, Morten called out to come to the station haven because he had caught a great bird! We all started walking towarda the cabin at the station, and it appeared to be a river warbler!


It was for Morten also a new species to ring, so he was smiling from ear to ear, lovely to see everyone so happy with such a beautiful bird.

The rest of the day was slow again, only 2 spoonbills far away made the observations a little bit better. One of the skylarks I've ringed in the nest was unfortunately found dead this afternoon, the death cause was probably bitten by an adder, I've seen that a few times before.

I went to the beach and spotted a new family of ringed plovers, and unringed ringed plovers are not acceptable, so now there are 3 more young ringed ringed plovers;).


After ringing the plovers I saw a Kentish plover in between the sanderlings and ringed plovers, that was a nice suprise as well! A nice end of a great day!

Antonino and Mallory Arrive From Sicily

søndag 19. maj 2024
af Mallory Echols

We arrived at Blåvand Fugelstation on Saturday evening and joined the bird-ringing operation on Sunday morning. Antonino is an experienced bird-ringer, having obtained his ringing license in 2008, and is looking to broaden his scope once he retires from his post as a livestock veterinarian for the public health ministry. I, Mallory, am a new bird-ringing apprentice studying under Antonino’s supervision. 

We learned about Blåvand Fugelstation via social media and thought it would be a great experience for our goals. Indeed, on our very first morning we had the privilege of capturing a young song thrush (Turdus philomelos), which we only see during the winter in Sicily. Furthermore, it’s been interesting to observe the differences in methods and coding between Denmark and Italy. 

First calendar year song thrush captured this morning.

Around mid-morning, we set out with Henrik and Lucas on an adventure to see dotterels that have been seen in the past couple of weeks. Luck was not on our side for the dotterel sighting, but as first-time visitors to Denmark, it was a novel opportunity for us to observe the flora and fauna present, including roe deer and an enormous hare, as well as a myriad of avifauna that we don’t see often or at all in Sicily.


Other things to mention:

Common Nightingale (ringed) & Red-breasted Flycatcher (ringed)IMG_7056.jpegIMG_7064.jpeg

A late Shore Lark (5th May record) & 3k+ Arctic Skua (morning observations)

The Quality Outshines the Quantity

lørdag 18. maj 2024
af by Lucas Corneliussen

After many days of strong east wind, it finally decreased today, but the heat remained the same. To begin, my name is Lucas Corneliussen, I am 20 years old from the United States and am excited to be spending the summer counting & ringing at two stations here in Denmark (Blåvand & Skagen). Today was my third day here at the station and for me, it may be my favorite so far.


 The day can be described as high quality over high quantity. Beginning the morning, I headed back to “Böhmer’s Hole” to watch the morning migration only to find a general lack of birds. The first hour was slow, with very few birds moving: until I noticed a Little Egret (Silkehejre) flying south! Henrik & David arrived half an hour later and seemed a bit disappointed to miss the egret, but the morning was saved when we received a message from Morten and Michael that they had caught not only a Red Crossbill (Lille Korsnæb), but also a Thrush Nightingale (Nattergal)! David and I rushed over to catch a look at the nightingale and immediately upon our return Henrik called out “Common Rosefinch (Karmindompap)!” as it flew over. This was the first one this spring and something we had been expecting with the east wind.


The remainder of the observations from this morning were slow with almost as many Red-throated Loons (Rødstrubet Lom) and Common Scoters (Sortand) going north as south. Although we did have one lingering Black Tern (Sortterne) with the other terns on the beach. That said, the main migration seems to have trailed off for the spring. Henrik, David and I headed back to the station for some coffee and to watch the sky and our success continued! Four European Bee-eaters (Biæder) flew over the station and put on a show for us over the next ten minutes. During that time: Mortern had caught a different Hawfinch (Kernebider)! Around 11 AM, once Henrik and Maxim left, David and Morten spotted a Eurasian Hobby (Lærkefalk) heading southeast over the dunes, fortunately I was right inside working and was able to scramble outside to see it.


Later, Michael decided to go to the little “lake” and spend some time searching for anything he could find. He ended up finding 2 Common Pochards (, a Common Scoter and THREE Little Grebes! Wow, and to think that there were no records since 2009 as of a few days ago. Overall a great day!

Also, in the late evening yesterday: Michael and I went back out towards the lake and spent the evening trying to ring one of the Red-backed Shrike (Rødrygget Tornskade) and we were SUCCESSFUL!! We were able to capture a female, full of eggs and make her the first member of Michael’s project to color ringing shrikes at Blåvand Fuglestation!


Kernebidere og lille lappedykker

fredag 17. maj 2024
af Henrik Böhmer

Østenvinden fortsætter sammen med det gode vejr og det har sat sine præg på dagene. Det er nogle dejligt lune morgener med klart vejr og frisk vind. I dag var vinden lidt mindre kraftig end de andre dage og der var lidt flere skyer. Det gav lidt håb til ringmærkerne, som havde en lidt bedre dag. 

Dagens overraskelse i nettene var to kernebidere, der blev fanget i fyrhaven. En han og en hun med rugeplet. Michael og Maxim var meget glade for denne fangst, da de har snakket om kernebider i nogle dage. 

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Udover disse to fede fugle blev det til 13 nye mærkede, bl.a. en grå fluesnapper. Her er dagens mærkninger: 

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Morgenobsen starter nu kl. 5.00 og Lucas og undertegnede startede ud på sydhukket. Det varede dog ikke længe før vi gik op lidt længere nord, da der stort set ikke kom en eneste fugl mod nord, og der de seneste dage har været sydtrækkende vadere. Der rastede en del måger, terner og sandløbere på standen og blandt dem var der bl.a. 12 sortterner, 5 dværgmåger og 3 kaspiske måger. Det er det femte højeste antal sortterne på hukket om foråret. Derudover gav morgenobsen knapt 100 rødstrubede lommer, 2 sortstrubede lommer og en enkelt ride. Vi fik selskab af Henrik Møller og hans kone, Jette, som nåede at få det meste med. 

I mosen der der fortsat maget vand og det tiltrækker en del fugle. I dag var der bl.a. 3 skeænder, nogle gråænder og så er der 3 viber og en rødben, der har slået sig ned. Måske gør de yngleforsøg? Men det helt store scoop var en lille lappedykker. Den har åbenbart været her nogle dage, men de udenlandske frivillige vidste ikkeat den faktisk er ret sjælden herude. Sidste fund fra hukket er fra 2009. Og dermed også en ny huk-art til undertegnede. 

Bent var en tur på stranden og havde imponerende 54 dværgterner. Det tegner til at blive en helt god ynglesæson. 

Varme og østenvind giver hårde arbejdsbetingelser for Hukkets fuglekiggere

torsdag 16. maj 2024
af Morten Jenrich Hansen

Endnu en dag i solens tegn og vind fra øst, der nåede op på en varmeblæserstyrke af 9m/s og 24 graders varme over middag.
Det giver ikke mange fugle herude ved det sydvestligste punkt af Danmark, så vi kan bare gå rundt og svede over alt det, der bliver meldt fra andre steder i landet, mens vi bliver brændt igennem af sol fra skyfri himmel.

Maxim og Michael tog sig af runderne ved nettene i Fyrhaven, mens jeg passede Stationshaven og fik taget West Nile Virus blodprøverne på de få fugle, som vi fik fanget i løbet af de 5 standardtimer.
9 mærket og 6 genfangster blev det til.
Da vinden tog til ved 10-tiden valgte vi at lukke ned for ringmærkningen efter de 5 standardtimer.
Bedste fangst blev årets første Kærsanger herude, så lidt kom der ud af de mange skridt for tjek af ellers tomme net.
Dagens Kærsanger blev også dagens første fugl i hånden, da den fløj i et net i stationshaven kl 5.

Lucas lod ikke til at være mærket af jetlag trods omstilling fra Californisk tid til dansk sommertid, men tog plads i klitten fra solopgang og gennemførte de 3 timers tælling.
Bedste fugle derude ved stranden i dag blev 5 Dværgmåger, 4 Sortterner og blandt vadefuglene bl.a. 40 Islandsk Ryle.
Inde fra baglandet kom en ung Havørn flyvende fra nord og vendte over Hukket og Fuglestationen, men vores håb om spændende rovfuglearter i østenvinden svandt efterhånden noget ind som dagen gik med forgæves spejden.
Det blev kun til de faste Musvåger, Tårnfalke og Rørhøge ud over Havørnen.

Der var ellers lidt Mursejlere i luften mellem alle svalerne og det er gerne et godt tegn på, at flere spændende arter kunne presses helt herud af østenvinden, men vi venter altså stadig her til aften på dagens overraskelse..

Morgendagen skulle vejrmæssigt fortsætte i samme genre, så vi har ikke mange forventninger til større antal, men håber på en enkelt eller to tilføjelser arter på årets lokale fugleliste.

Dagens ringmærkning (mærket/genfanget):

Rødstjert                                       1                          0
Kærsanger                                   1                          0
Havesanger                                 2                          0
Gærdesanger                              0                          2
Løvsanger                                    1                          4
Gransanger                                  2                          0
Bogfinke                                       1                          0

Folk på stationen: Lucas, Maxim, Michael og Morten

Arrival of Lucas

onsdag 15. maj 2024
af Michael

Today was a slow day again. Morten was ringing in the garden, Maxim and me in the lighthouse garden. the wind was slightly less than yesterday, and there where more birds than yesterday. in fact, the first bird was already a small suprise, because we caught a 2k male wheatear. the total was crushing yesterdays catch with 13 new birds and 5 controls.


Unfortunately, there where no observations this morning. I went out to check the sea and it didn't seem we missed a lot, the sea was pretty empty, but on one of the sand banks where 3 roosting black terns and some ringed comorants, herring gulls and sandwich terns, unfortunately too far away to read them.

Just before dinner, Lucas arrived. Maxim had just made some delicious food and after eating, I said I would go out for ringing some young plovers, and of course, Lucas and Maxim wanted to join. We caught 3 of them, and we think the fourth one was dead already, or just unfindable. When you say cuteness overload, this is what we mean...


After ringing the chicks, we went to the lake to see if there was anything special to find, and we found a skylark nest. Not bad! After finding the nest Maxim went back to the station and Lucas and I stayed in the area, when we suddenly saw a few yellow wagtails flying around. One of them appeared to be a subspecies M.flava thinbergi and M.flava flavissima. This sequence of events and other nice sightings like red-backed shrike and corn bunting must have been a great arrival for Lucas, he will definetely have a great time here!

A Day of Unchanging Winds and only a few Birds

tirsdag 14. maj 2024
af Maxim Lisi

There was no change in the weather since yesterday and so no change in bird activity either. Because of the strong winds not al nets were open in the gardens. With Morten helming the station garden, Michael and I walked the rounds in the lighthouse garden. It took more than three hours before the first bird ended up in the nets at the light house. I don’t think I have seen Michael this happy to have a bird in his hands, it were some long and uneventful three hours. The total of today was 6 ringed and 2 controls.


Happy Michael after three hours of empty nets

When Henrik returned from the morning observations, he was a bit more optimistic about the day compared to us ringers. The most notable observations were 6 black terns and a good number of waders. While observing, Henrik heard a Tawny pipet fly over and after studying the audio recording he made he confirmed the assessment.

Later in the morning while enjoying the sun in front of the station some of the common raptors were spotted yet again (Marsh harrier, Kestrel and Buzard). But the biggest surprise was when Michael spotted a Bee-eater flying over the station at high speed. Just when Henrik sat down behind his laptop and Morten went inside to get a cup of coffee. When everyone came running outside the bird was already long gone unfortunately. Last night Michael also spotted a female Nightjar when he was trying to catch Red-backed strikes.

Later in the day Morten received a phone call from Bent saying that he saw a Red-footed Falcon flying over in Skødstrup. Afterwards Morten took some time the sit down in the dunes in the hopes of spotting the bird here in Blåvand. To no avail unfortunately.

The rest of the week the weather does not seem to change much and so there are no expectations of seeing or catching a lot of birds, but there is hope in seeing something special. It appears we are falling back on the phrase we clung to in April: Quality over quantity.

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