The feeding stations are now officially closed! 18 months, 1580 loaves of bread, 1270 kg of seed, 476 mistnet hours, 749 birds caught and banded, and over 100 volunteers – this was a big project!!! A very, very big thank you to all those involved!
The final round of mistnetting in August/September saw another 215 birds caught and measured – only 23 of these were recaptures from previous seasons. The house sparrow was still the most numerous bird caught, with 101 individuals captured. We had a big jump in the overall number of silvereye caught this season (88 compared to 43 in March). There were plenty of parasites collected this time, both feather parasites and intestinal parasites, as well as evidence of avian pox in some individuals, and a few positives for the salmonella screening in sparrows.
The final lot of data were downloaded from the readers at the 3 feeding stations where birds were microchipped. In total we had 69 of the microchipped birds return to the feeders, and collectively, we have had about 95,000 reads from these birds over the course of the study. Some have come back only a few times, but others have been daily visitors.
The next stage of the study will involve a lot of time scoring and analysing the data collected. It will take quite some time to get through it all – there’s certainly plenty of it, which is fantastic! Will keep you all posted on the amazing discoveries as they happen.
Thanks again to all those who have donated their time and effort to help make this study happen!