Spurn Bird Observatory

Spurn Ringing Experience

14 June 2016

Hosted by Spurn Bird Observatory, based at Spurn Bird Observatory, Kilnsea, East Yorkshire Tuesday 30th August- Thursday 1st September 2016.


Spurn Bird Observatory is proud to announce its first ringing experience. The event is aimed at ringers of all standards to participate in a variety of ringing activities. Over the 3 days we will try to incorporate as much practical fieldwork as possible into the time available. Thus, participants must expect a fairly strenuous workload during their stay; an early start is usual and ringing/demonstrations may take place through the day and even into the evening/night. Rest time will be included in the programme.

The main practical emphasis of the experience is on ‘processing’, that is, on detailed plumage examination to determine species, and where possible, age and sex, and on techniques of measuring, weighing, moult recording etc. Mist nets are the main catching method used and there are usually good opportunities for ringers to gain extraction skills. There will also be some use of and demonstrations of Heligoland traps, house traps, spring traps, wader traps and whoosh nets. Ringers from the Bird Observatory will provide opportunities for informal discussion on topical issues, as well as giving talks on ageing and sexing, and demonstrations of IPMR.

Tuition from experienced Spurn Bird Observatory ringers will be given throughout and instruction is usually given on a one-to-one basis. Thus, tutors and students are in close contact with one another for the duration of the course.

Up to 8 T, C or A permit holders

Experience on offer
A wide variety of ringing activites, which will include both resident and migrant breeding species with the potential for some scarce/rare migrants depending on weather conditions.

Ringing activities expected catch
General mist netting at the Warren and Kew/Church Field from first light Willow Warblers, Meadow Pipits, Tree Sparrows, Pied Flycatchers, Swallows, Redstarts, Whitethroats, Reed Warblers, with potential for scarce drift migrants as well.
Evening Swallow roost ringing along the Canal Swallows, Sand Martins, Sedge and Reed Warblers, Yellow Wagtails
Night time tern mist netting on the beach and/or mist netting for waders on Kilnsea Wetlands/Beacon Ponds Common and Arctic Terns
Redshank, Dunlin, Knot, Grey Plover and assorted other waders
Assorted trapping activities through the day e.g. wader traps, whoosh netting, spring traps, Heligoland traps Waders, Wheatears, Whinchats, Starlings etc


Accommodation is provided at the Observatory. The accommodation consists of three bedrooms upstairs, with three single beds in the back room (with views over the large garden) and two single beds and one bunk bed in the two front rooms (with impressive views over the Humber estuary). For an extra fee you can stay in the downstairs bedroom with two single beds and bedding provided. There are two bathrooms upstairs each with a toilet/washbasin and shower cubicle, as well as a down stairs toilet, boot room, large modern kitchen/diner and extensive common room with log burner providing the central heating, three double seater sofas and free Wi-Fi for guests and a PC. Participants will need to bring their own bedding/sleeping bag as required. Further details on the accommodation available on our website.


There will be no food provided during the experience, tea and coffee will be available in the ringing lab at Church Field, the Warren and the Observatory. Extensive cooking facilities are provided in the Observatory and the Crown and Anchor pub serves excellent food a mere 30 second walk from the Observatory.


The cost of the course is £160. This includes all rings and equipment necessary for the experience. A deposit of £50 is required to book a place on the event.


If you wish to attend the Spurn ringing experience then please request an application form by emailing Paul Collins on friendsofspurn@hotmail.com

Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions on the above email address or alternatively ring Paul Collins on
01964 650 479

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