Anyone with an interest in our work is welcome to come to our fieldwork and join in. We aim to get a good mix of experienced and less experienced participants and to achieve this may need to limit numbers attending. Ringers under the age of 16 will need to be accompanied by a responsible adult and, in line with BTO policy, we require a parental consent form completing for anyone under 18. Newcomers are asked to provide a brief resume of their ornithological/ringing experience.
If you would like to come, please get in touch with us via our enquiries address: enquiries ‘AT’ wwrg.org.uk
The group aims to visit the Wash and catch waders throughout the year, subject to there being suitable tides.
Winter – Weekend visits are arranged approximately once a month, with additional single tide visits for mist netting. Cannon netting is usually on the east Wash beaches or at sites in the Terrington area. Mist netting is normally at Terrington. Most commonly caught species are Oystercatcher, Dunlin, Sanderling, Turnstone, Grey Plover, Redshank, Bar-tailed Godwit and Knot.
Summer – Longer visits are arranged during the peak autumn passage period. These make use of opportunities to catch flocks roosting on the saltmarsh and harvested arable fields. During these visits there are often two separate teams. Cannon netting is the main catching technique but mist netting is often used on one or two evenings if it is dark enough. Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit and Ringed Plover are additional species to those listed above which are frequently caught on these visits. The mist netting sessions often catch a greater variety of species, including gulls, the occasional duck, and Curlew Sandpiper.
|February||12th – 14th||Friday to Sunday||Assemble Friday evening. Cannon netting, mist netting, and colour-ring resighting. Extended to Sunday evening tide for mist netting at Gedney if weather suitable and enough people interested.|
|March||11th – 13th||Friday to Sunday||Assemble Friday evening. Cannon netting, mist netting, and colour-ring resighting.|
|June||25th – 26th||Saturday to Sunday||Equipment maintenance and AGM. Assemble Friday evening / Saturday morning.|
|July||22nd – 24th||Friday to Saturday||Assemble Friday evening. Limited opportunities for cannon netting.|
|August||18th – 23rd||Thursday to Tuesday||AUTUMN PASSAGE 1
Assemble during day Thursday (August 18th) ready for catching at Wainfleet / recces on Friday morning. Catching attempts will mainly be cannon netting with mist netting Monday and Tuesday evenings. Final catch Tuesday evening. A limited number of volunteers will be required to recce Thursday morning.
|September||15th – 21st||Thursday to Wednesday||AUTUMN PASSAGE 2
Assemble during day Thursday (September 15th) ready for catching / recces on Friday morning. Catching attempts will mainly be cannon netting with mist netting Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday (Lincs & Gedney) evenings. Fieldwork will finish after Wednesday evening’s mist netting.
|October||28th – 30th||Friday to Sunday||Assemble Friday evening; Cannon netting and colour-ring resighting. Mist netting at Gedney possible option for Saturday morning.|
|December||16th – 18th||Friday to Sunday||Assemble Friday evening; Cannon netting, mist netting, and colour-ring resighting.|
Additional Mist Netting Sessions
Extra mist netting sessions may happen when there are suitable tides. Potential dates are listed below. Whether a session will take place is dependent on weather, availability of leaders and level of interest shown. Anyone interested is asked to make this known via enquiries ‘AT’ wwrg.org.uk at least one week in advance.
|January||9th||Saturday||Evening tide mist netting at Terrington or Gedney.|
|January||15th||Friday||Evening tide mist netting at Terrington.|
|January||16th||Saturday||Evening tide mist netting at Gedney.|
|September||4th||Sunday||Evening tide mist netting at Terrington.|
|September||5th||Monday||Evening tide mist netting at Gedney.|
|September||15th||Thursday||Morning tide Mist netting at Gedney.|
|October||21st||Friday||Evening tide Mist netting at Gedney.|
|November||4th||Friday||Evening tide Mist netting at Gedney.|
|December||3rd||Saturday||Evening tide Mist netting at Gedney.|
|December||28th||Wednesday||Evening tide Mist netting at Gedney.|
The Group is now colour-marking four wader species (Turnstone, Grey Plover, Curlew & Bar-tailed Godwit) and fieldwork may include devoting time to looking for colour-ringed birds where this is mentioned above.We will aim to catch on the other tides, subject as usual to weather and recces.
Volunteers are required to look for colour-marked birds at times other than during the Group’s main Fieldwork Programme. Jen Smart is co-ordinating this and if you are willing and able to help with this please contact her via sightings ‘AT’ wwrg.org.uk. Members wishing to help with a mist netting session and look for colour mark resighting the following morning will normally be able to stay at the Group’s base overnight.
A charge is made to cover the cost of food and running expenses including rings. In 2016 prices will be £7 per tide / catching attempt attended (reduced to £3 when attending for a single tide and not taking advantage of the food / accommodation or other facilities provided by the group) including the longer visits in August and September. Car drivers are reimbursed by the group for fuel used whilst ferrying people and equipment about. Families are welcome to bring children and charges for children are by negotiation.
Membership of the Group
Full membership of the Wash Wader Ringing Group is open to anyone at an annual subscription rate of £6 per year (£4 for un-waged persons). Although members will have priority, non-members are welcome to participate in fieldwork but will be asked to become a ‘Temporary Member’ at a charge of £1 per fieldwork visit. A Temporary Member who shortly afterwards becomes a full member will have the charge of £1 deducted from their initial subscription.
Group members receive reports on WWRG fieldwork by email and get updates on the fieldwork programme (e.g. the dates marked as ‘possible’). If you are a member and do not already receive these, please ensure that enquiries ‘AT’ wwrg.org.uk has your email address.