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The mouse is gone but a fox family settled

lørdag 30. april 2022
af Leona Gottschalkson

Today the ringing was a bit better than the days before. We captured 10 new birds and 3 recaptures. Due to a fox cub that Menno saw in the Helgolandtrap we asume that there is a whole fox family in the lighthousegarden. Because we don't want our birds in the nets to become foxfood we put up a foxtrap that we check regularly.

Bello also had a better day, with okay numbers of divers and terns, but still nothing out of the ordernary actually still a bit under standard. 

When I took out the trash in the kitchen, I gasped. I was very surprised when I found that one of the mousetraps finally worked after nearly 2 months! Sadly it wasn't a living trap. 

A bit of a retrospectif to the last month.


In April 508 new birds have been ringed. The most numerous species have been: Chiffchaff (95) and Robin (92). The highlights for me were two collared doves, nine wrynecks (as mentioned previous, this is almost the same amount as the highest season total) and the ring ouzel. Besides that, it has been really nice to see some birds that winter in southern parts of this world. Such as willow warbler, blackcap and lesser whitethroat. Up untill now we did not caught common whitethroat, but we expect that we catch one the coming days. Besides the new birds, we also had some nice recaptures. In total we had 4 foreign controls: a belgian Linnet, a belgian Blackcap, a german Robin and a french Chiffchaff. 


Ringing data (new/recapture)

Dunnock (0/1)

Blackbird (0/1)

Chiffchaff (2/0)

Willow warbler (3/0)

Great tit (0/1)

Brambling (1/0)

Linnet (1/0)

Redpoll (3/0)




Quick trip!

fredag 29. april 2022
af Agata Balicka

Day started better than the day before and first and second round brought us 3 birds (Redpolls and a Robin). During the day we did not catch many birds but we had opportunity to ring a Redwing. It was only 7th one this year. Weather was pretty good in the morning, but after 10 a.m. wind became stronger, what made us close nets just after 1 p.m.
Mikkel however observed more birds than yesterday. He saw almost 4 hundred Red-throated Divers and 2 Ring Ouzels near the camping.
Today we went on a trip to the Fanø lake in order to see Spoonbills and Bluethroats. Unfortunately, we did not see them, but still think this excursion was very pleasant. We saw big flocks of Barnacle Geese and Black-headed Gulls, and some other nice species, like a Common Sandpiper, Wood Sandpipers, Shelducks and many Great Crested Grebes. When we were getting done with this little birdwatching, weather changed and looked really great from then, so we decided to go to some other place to look for our ‘’target species’’. We spent some time near the Tanesø lake, but instead of finding bluethroats we climbed on a little hill and took a short nap on grass. So the rarest species that we saw today in the afternoon were probably black geese that we chased in our dreams.


Ringing (new/recapture)

Robin / Rødhals: 1 / 0

Redwing / Vindrossel: 1 / 0

Blackcap / Munk: 2 / 0

Chiffchaff  / Gransanger: 1 / 1

Lesser Redpoll / Stor Gråsisken: 1 / 1

Total: 6 / 2

Dofbasen link : https://dofbasen.dk/search/result.php?design=table&soeg=soeg&periode=dato&dato=29-04-2022&omraade=stor&stor=607&obstype=observationer&species=alle&sortering=dato
People at the station; Maciej, Agata, Bello, Bent, Leona and Menno

Nice day, few birds

onsdag 27. april 2022
af Menno den Uijl

Today was another slow day migration wise. Not everyday here can be full of birds, unfortunately. The migration over sea was even so slow that Mikkel was to bored to continue the count. Because of the low amount of birds in the nets, I decided to recontinue the seawatch from the ringing lab. In between the ringing I saw quite some migration of divers and scoters, so I decided to give Mikkel a call that it was not that boring actually. Shortly after the call, Mikkel joined me. During that time, there was some high migration of divers. Besides the divers and terns, we also saw some little terns, gannets and little gulls.

Although there were not that many birds to ring, we caught another new wryneck. This brings the total to 9 and we are only one short of the record of 10. We think it should be possible to catch some more, resulting in a new record number for this species.

For dinner we made a nice bonfire to grill some sausages and patotoes.

Dof link : https://dofbasen.dk/search/result.php?design=table&soeg=soeg&periode=dato&dato=27-04-2022&omraade=stor&stor=607&obstype=observationer&species=alle&sortering=dato

People at the station: Maciej, Agata, Bello, Bent, Leona and Menno

Ringing (new/recapture)

Wryneck (1/1)

Wren (1/0)

Dunnock (1/1)

Robin (0/6)

Black redstart (1/0)

Lesser whitethroat (1/0)

 Blackcap (5/0)

Chiffchaff (2/0)

Willow warbler (6/1)

Chaffinch (1/0)

Lesser redpoll (1/0)

20 new birds over 10 species

Bonjour un autre torcol fourmilier!

tirsdag 26. april 2022
af Maciej Wozniak

In the beginning there was nothing. Or more prosaically saying, first round after opening the nets today was completely empty. We were quite scared that the rest of the day would look the same. Luckily, our fears were unfounded, and next rounds even managed to bring us some unexpected joy. The brightest highlight of the day was a Chiffchaff, or should I say Pouillot veloce, as it already had a French ring on a leg! Bird banding indeed is a wonderful activity because of so many things, like being in touch (quite literally) with the nature, constantly learning, getting to see so many different species from such a small distance, meeting so many amazing people and so on, but it is the recoveries like this that remind us why we are doing it. Collecting data about migration is one of the essential things that we learn by bird banding.
Of course, there were some other nice birds today, like for example a Tree Sparrow, that doesn't get caught so often as we would expect. Moreover, I can't say that we are bored, but for sure we are beginning to be used to Wrynecks - today we ringed three another ones. I am sure that we are all getting better in ageing them and don't think we could be in a better place to gain this experience right now. We also liked the Yellowhammer very much, as it was so colorful and pleasant to look at!
In terms of the seawatch, Mikkel did not have any super spectacular observations today. That does not mean however that he did not see anything. He sighted Little Terns and some migration movements of Divers. Other than that, he had a lot of time and opportunities to watch confused Shelducks flying there and back again.
In the meantime Agata made a dinner that we ate about 4 pm, what seems extremely early for a dinner in Denmark, but is completely normal in Poland. We hope that all of our non-polish friends were pleased with it anyway.

It is always astonishing to see from that close how incredibly yellow can be birds so common as the Yellowhammer. Photo: Maciej Wozniak

People at the station: Agata, Leona, Menno, Mikkel, Maciej

Complete list of birds caught today (ringed/recaptured):

Vendehals / Wryneck: 3/1
Gærdesmutte / Wren: 0/1
Jernspurv / Dunnock: 1/2
Rødhals / Robin: 1/4
Sangdrossel / Song Thrush: 0/1
Gærdesanger / Lesser Whitethroat: 1/0
Munk / Blackcap: 1/1
Gransanger / Chiffchaff: 3/2
Løvsanger / Willow Warbler: 2/1
Skovspurv / Eurasian Tree Sparrow: 1/0
Grønirisk / European Greenfinch: 1/0
Tornirisk / Linnet: 2/1
Stor Gråsisken / Lesser Redpoll: 1/0
Gulspurv / Yellowhammer: 1/0

Total: 18/14

Roadtrip to Fanø

mandag 25. april 2022
af Leona Gottschalkson

Today was a rather slow day both on the seawatch and in the ringing gardens. We managed to catch 3 new Wrynecks and on the seawatch Bello saw a Little Tern, a Merlin and an Osprey. We had also another two visitors: Lene and Ole which joined a bit for ringing.

Because it was a slow day we closed the nets at the lighthouse after the standard hours were over. Menno had a consult call with his University and continued the ringing in the station garden. So Maciej, Agata, Bello and I decided to go on a roadtrip and check out the Island Fanø, we took the ferry from Esbjerg. When we arrived we went to a small city to get something nice to eat and looked in awe at all these cute little houses. We then also went into a church were we noticed that there was Ships hanging from the ceiling.

Maciej having a nice moment with a cat, Photo by Leona

After we ate a nice sandwich and icecream we checked out the beach in the hope to find some nice species. We weren't disappointed. On the beach we saw a few gulls, lapwings, pied avocets, curlews and got some nice pictures of some seals relaxing in the sun.

Looking at the seals, Photo by Leona

We then went to a place called "fuglekøje". It is an old duck decoy which was formerly used for duck and waterfowl hunting. Between 1960 and 1990 it was used for ornithological research, but now it is only used as a living museum. There also was a tower that Agata and Maciej went up and could see really far. Bello and I practiced birdsongs.

Agata and me looking at a seashell, Photo by Bello


Ringing list (new/recapture)


Dunnock (4/3)

Robin (5/1)

Common redstart (1/2)

Lesser whitethroat (0/1)    

Blackcap (2/0)

Chiffchaff (5/2)

Willow warbler (1/1)

Greenfinch (2/0)

Lesser Redpoll (2/0)

Dof link : https://dofbasen.dk/search/result.php?design=table&soeg=soeg&periode=dato&dato=25-04-2022&omraade=stor&stor=607&obstype=observationer&species=alle&sortering=dato

People at the station: Maciej, Agata, Bello, Leona and Menno


Arrival of some migratory species

søndag 24. april 2022
af Menno den Uijl

Today was quite a busy ringing day with 76 new birds. Some migrant birds that winter more south are starting to arrive at Blåvand finally. Today we caught two pied flycatchers, 5 lesser whitethroats, 13 willow warblers and 5 common redstarts. Today we at least dubbled the season amount for the species mentioned before. Next to that we also caught 9 chiffchaffs, so we almost caught over a 100 of them. Luckely today we were with 5 ringers, so we could all ring some birds. The seawatch was a bit more slow, probably because the wind (North east) did not push the birds to the shore but instead up the sea. After the migration count, did a round in the military zone and found three wrynecks. Besides that, Bello ringed his first birds today.


Wryneck in habitat - Photo by Bello

Today, unfortunately Merit had to leave again.

Ringing list (new/recapture)

Dunnock (5/1)

Robin (7/0)

Black redstart (1/0)

Common redstart (5/0)

Song thrush (5/1)

Blackbird (/)

Lesser whitethroat (5/0)    

Blackcap (20/0)

Chiffchaff (9/0)

Willow warbler (13/1)

Pied Flycatcher (3/0)

Chaffinch (1/0)

Brambling (2/0)

Yellowhammer (0/1)

Dof link : https://dofbasen.dk/search/result.php?design=table&soeg=soeg&periode=dato&dato=24-04-2022&omraade=stor&stor=607&obstype=observationer&species=alle&sortering=dato

People at the station: Maciej, Agata, Bello, Merit, Bent, Leona and Menno

A fun day

lørdag 23. april 2022
af Mikkel Bello

Hello, its been a long time since I wrote the blog!
This morning Menno joined me on the sea-watch, and even though the migration still seemed not appearing at at all, we could enjoy an arctic skua at least and a Merlin just before the observation finished. Menno and I have a little competition going about who saw the most spices, and because I do the counting, I got a few spices on him. But with the Merlin (dværgfalk)  he just got a bit closer!  After the watch we decided to treat ourselves with some eggs and bacon and leftover sausages from the grill last evening.

At midday most of us were sleeping or resting, so when Signe was leaving Menno and I were the only one awake. Afterwards we went ringing and we caught the first Reed Bunting(Rørspurv) of the year! And I ringed my first bird, a Dunnock(Jernspurv).

Photo by Bjarne Manstrup. Reed Bunting (rørspurv)

In the evening we spend time playing card games and learning to count in several languages: Polish, Danish, Swedish, Russian, Chinese, German, English and Finnish.  Also, Merit made some very nice cookies for us!
After dinner we tried to guess bird songs and calls that we played for each other very fun. 

So I lost a bit track of time and it got pretty late before the last one of us came to bed, and I choose to postpone the blog writing for Saturday!

Dofbasen observations, here

People at the station; Agata, Leona, Merit, Signe, Menno, Mikkel, Maciej, Bent.

Grill and chill

fredag 22. april 2022
af Maciej Wozniak

After few days with quite bright mornings, our alarms woke us up a bit earlier today. We are not complaining about that however, as sunrises please us way more than sunsets. Signe had her first opportunity of seeing gorgeusly colored sky from the lighthouse hill and she seemed really enchanted with that view, just like everyone is. Weather generally was summerish after noon, just like yesterday, so we were doing all the rounds with grat joy, even though the birds were not numerous. And also, like usually, most of them got caughtd during first few rounds. In terms of ornithological highlights, the most interesting individuals were a Wryneck and a Linnet with Belgian ring. However, we already extracted both of them in previous days. But of course that does not make them less valuable for us, as it is always good to look at all of their characteristics and discuss the identification again, especially when there are so many ringers around. We also banded a Pied Flycatcher, which was the first one of this species this year.
Seawatching today did not differ much from last few days. Mikkel (today joined by Agata) sighted some Gannets, Scoters, a lot of Sandwich Terns and Gulls (Lesser and Great Black-backed), and also few waders.
Besides our birding work, we are still using great weather (not so great for bird migration obviously). Leona and Merit even decided to try swimming in the Sea today, as water temperature reached 10 Celsius degrees. I, however, prefer the comfortable, dry warmth of the garden, so the day of my first sea swimming this year is yet to come. Another (big) advantage of the summer-like weather is that we can make a grill for dinner, and that's exactly what we did.

IMG 2304 1
Pied Flycatcher - we hope it will catch a lot of flies this season. Photo: Merit

People at the station: Agata, Leona, Merit, Signe, Menno, Mikkel, Maciej

Complete list of birds caught today (ringed/recaptured):

Vendehals / Wryneck: 0/1
Gærdesmutte / Wren: 1/0
Jernspurv / Dunnock: 1/2
Rødhals / Robin: 9/1
Husrødstjert / Black Redstart: 1/0
Sangdrossel / Song Thrush: 4/0
Munk / Blackcap: 4/1
Gransanger / Chiffchaff: 2/1
Løvsanger / Willow Warbler: 1/0
Broget Fluesnapper / Pied Flycatcher: 1/0
Kvækerfinke / Brambling: 1/0
Tornirisk / Linnet: 0/1

Total: 25/7

First three

torsdag 21. april 2022
af Agata Balicka

This day enchanted us with sunny weather and cloudless sky. Although in terms of catching birds it wasn't the best weather, it managed to bring us two Wrynecks, a Firecrest and a Ring Ouzel, what was a really nice surprise. Today we ringed 25 birds. The most interesting birds that Mikkel saw, were 2 Arctic Skuas. After 11 am me and Maciej tried to see at least half of what Mikkel observed, but we sighted only Sandwich Terns, some Gulls (eg. Black-Headed Gulls). Today we also had a visitor - Erik Schaumburg, who came here to see the Wrynecks. I hope that he had a lot of luck and it was a successful "hunt". Today we also welcomed Signe in the station! In the evening we tried to observe a Bluethroat but it did not show up for us. Instead, we had opportunity to sight our first Gannet and a lot of other passerines. 

IMG 0603
Today we had two first Wrynecks! Photo: Mikkel Bello

IMG20220421061141 01
Ring ouzel first in this year! Photo: Maciej Wozniak

Wryneck (2/0)

Wren (1/0)

Dunnock (1/0)

Robin (3/1)

Chaffinch (0/1)

Ring ouzel (1/0)

Blackcap (2/0)

Chiffchaff (5/0)

Willow warbler (3/0)

Firecrest (1/0)

Blue tit (1/0)

Tree sparrow (1/0)

Greenfinch (1/0)

Lesser redpoll (3/0)

People at the station: Bent, Mikkel, Leona, Agata, Maciej, Menno, Signe, Merit


Ringing total (new/Recapture)

Wryneck (2/0)

Wren (1/0)

Dunnock (1/0)

Robin (3/1)

Chaffinch (0/1)

Ring ouzel (0/1)

Blackcap (2/0)

Chiffchaff (5/0)

Willow warbler (3/0)

Firecrest (1/0)

Blue tit (1/0)

Tree sparrow (1/0)

Greenfinch (1/0)

Lesser redpoll (3/0)


Dof link: https://dofbasen.dk/search/result.php?design=table&soeg=soeg&periode=dato&dato=21-04-2022&omraade=stor&stor=607&obstype=observationer&species=alle&sortering=dato

Flot gave and a very busy day

onsdag 20. april 2022
Maleri af strandskader
af Bent Jakobsen, Leona Gottschalkson

Sven Bødker var i går på besøg på fuglestationen med en flot gave i form af et maleri af vores logo fugl Strandskaden.
Det er malet af navnkundige Jon Fjeldså.
Blåvand Fuglestation siger 1000 tak20220419 1147170

Today was a really busy day. We startet the ringing as usual but with our 2 new Members Agatha and Matje. Together we captured total birds of ... different species. The highlights were a belgian Linnet and that Agatha and me managed to flush a Songthrush in the Helgoland Trap. 

Bello had a quiet time on the seawatch with only a few birds migrating.

After the ringing Matje, Agatha and I went to pick up Merit. Now that there are so many ringers, we can split up easily and work in teams which is really nice and a lot of fun. 

Because Bellos carbattery died he asked around in the Parking lot if there was someone with a starter cable. Because he found no one, the six of us pushed the car up the hill towards the beach, to try and load the battery by going in the 2nd gear downhill. Soon when we pushed the car uphill we were joined by two germans. But it didn't work. So we spoke with the germans and it turned out: They had startercables!


Trying to load the carbattery photo taken by Merit

We then were able to start the car, so we went on a roadtrip to hopefully be able to listen to Eagle Owls and Tengmalm's Owls (Boreal Owl). When we arrived we first heard the eagle owl so we wanted to get closer but actually went further away from it. After an hour we went back to our original spot and were lucky. From that spot we could hear an Eagle Owl, a Boreal Owl and a Long-eared Owl at the same time!


Listening to the owls photo taken by Merit

Ringing totals (new/recapture)

Wren (0/1)

Dunnock (2/0)

Robin (1/4)

Common redstart (1/0)

Blackbird (2/0)

Song Thrush (1/0)

Blackcap (2/0)

Chiffchaff (4/0)

Willow warbler (2/0)

Coal tit (0/1)

Starling (1/0)

Tree sparrow (0/1)

Chaffinch (0/1)

Brambling (1/0)

Greenfinch (0/1)

Linnet (2/1)

Lesser redpoll (2/0)


Dofbasen link: here


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