Southern Colour Ringing Group


Today after weeks of observing and working out how Gadwall were behaving and some work to get water levels at a particular height on the scrape we finally had a chance with some good weather forecast to attempt a cannon net catch. We were successful and caught four Gadwall at Rye Meads for the London Duck satellite tracking project.

A short clip of the fire taken by Gary Gardiner can be found at this link here:

All four trackers were deployed and we await the results. All birds were also fitted with a colour ring. 

IMG 3421IMG 3433

Male and Female Gadwall fitted with Satelite trackers at Rye Meads in Hertfordshire (Photos Gary Gardiner).


One of the pulli ringed at Fishers Green this year has just been sighted in Spain at San Lorenzo beach, Gij√≥n, Asturias, Spain. This is the furthest one of the Fishers Green birds has gone and we thank Nacho Vega for sending in the sighting.


David Low has been out in the field searching hard for ringed Brent Geese and has come up trumps with three of the eighteen birds ringed in January re sighted. Green AA (Wakering Stairs) and AG (Leigh on Sea) were seen on 24th October and Green AY (Shoebury)  on 26th October. AA was paired with a female and has a juvenile with the pair. David has also reported good numbers of Juveniles in the flock so we are hopefull that here will be good numbers of birds at Blue House Farm when we are ready to resume catching attempts.



The aim of the Southern Colour Marking Group is to study various species of bird using colour marking in London, Essex and Hertfordshire. We do this by catching the birds using a cannon net, a technique requiring a special licence, or finding nests of breeding birds and marking the young in the nest.

Birds captured using cannon nets are extracted from the net before being marked with individually numbered metal leg rings. Whilst ringing the birds, we take measurements and study plumage characteristics. As many birds as possible are marked with a colour mark (either leg ring or wing tag) which can be read with a telescope without the bird being recaptured.


Here are links to other related websites:

Brent Goose Colour Marking 

South England Kite Group

Essex Wildlife Trust

London Wildlife Trust

Lee Valley Regional Park Authority

If you know of a website that we have missed, please contact us.

Bird ringing in Britain is licensed and coordinated by The British Trust for Ornithology. Bird ringing in Europe is coordinated by EURING.

A catalogue of colour ringing projects throughout Europe is voluntarily maintained by Dirk Raes at European colour-ring Birding.


The group operates with the excellent support and cooperation of The Essex Wildlife Trust at Blue House Farm which operates the nature reserve and allows access for Brent Goose catching. The Lee Valley Regional Park Authority and the London Wildlife Trust allow us to access sites in the Lee Valley Park for Heron and Egret work. Richard Bott kindly allows access to woodland on the Bott Estate for Red Kite monitoring.

We are grateful to the Essex Birdwatching Society and Essex Field Club for providing funding for the colour ringing programme for Brent Geese, London Wildlife Trust for Herons and Jenny Weston at the RSPB for support with Red Kite wing tagging.

Header images on this website are licensed under the Creative Commons license by the photographers

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