Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Ruff recovery in Nothern Spain

Last week, while I was catching up with some of the best birding blogs I know from Spain, I came across a surprise I really wasn´t expecting. My good friend Ernesto Villodas had posted a few pictures (see his blog at: http://nosinmisprismaticos.blogspot.co.uk/of a flagged ruff he had taken on the 18/09/2016 at Colindres, Cantabria (North Spain). Thanks to Antonio Gutierrez he found out that it could be a GRG bird and he mentioned Raymond´s name in his blog post but wasn´t able to contact him. What are the chances of me coming across my trainer´s name on a Spanish bird blog?? As soon as I saw this, I emailed Raymond with all the details and, within 10 mins, he confirmed it was a juv male (054 and red ring above the knee) they ringed near the Ythan estuary just 8 days before! For me, it was definitely one of the most exciting moments since I first started ringing back in March.

Ruff 054. Photo by Ernesto Villodas
It has now been confirmed that the bird was first seen on the 16/09/2016 by Gabriel Esturo, which means the bird flew at least 1500km in under 6 days. It will be interesting to know if it decides to spend the winter at the site or if it decides to continue its southwards journey. If it decides to stay I might even get to see it when I fly home over Christmas!

Photo by Ernesto Villodas