Today we had the fabulous Wiltshire Bird Open day down at Langford Lakes!
Held by the Wiltshire Ornithological Society and Wildlife Trusts, it was a fabulous day engaging more people with our county’s birds!
My brother and I were up early for the bird ringing demo by Jonny Cooper where we saw lots of species including Cetti’s warblers, Treecreepers, a Reed Bunting, lots of Blackcaps and many more. It was great to see so many people interested!
Then I went out to run the owl pellet dissection which was a huge success! We were busy all day with adults as well as young people coming to dissect them and identify the small mammal bones and skulls.
All of the pellets were Barn owl and came from one nest box which was only put up last autumn, so a great success to have them in already! There were lots of small mammal remains in the pellets, including lots of mice, shrews and bank and field vole!
The only way to identify the different skulls of the Field and Bank vole is to remove a tooth: the field vole tooth on the left is straight and flat at the top and bottom, whereas the bank vole on the right has two roots at the bottom.
The way to identify Shrews, is by looking at the red tips on the teeth.
Throughout the day there were also lots of great guided walks around the reserve and talks about various conservation projects going on around the county!
It was a really fab day and I can’t wait for the next one!
If you are local to Wiltshire and interested in birds, check out the Wiltshire Ornithological Society for lots of great outdoor walks and also regular indoor meetings with interesting talks!