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Female Great Snipe | by meeralee
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Female Great Snipe

This is Raymond, the Lund University researcher who heads the Great Snipe project. He's measuring one of only two birds we caught in the mist nets last night, an untagged female. More were expected, as this has been a very busy lek in previous years—but for some reason it wasn't active last night. After many hours, a few of us walked about 45 minutes further on and higher up the mountain to investigate another known lekking site and did see and hear significantly more activity there.

 

A decision will now have to be made about which leks (there are many other known sites scattered throughout the mountains) to visit on the second and third nights to improve the chances of trapping more birds (especially male birds that were tagged with a geolocator last year, since those individuals, unlike those tagged with radio transmitters, must be recaptured in order to download the data the logger contains.

 

Raymond did me the infinite kindness of letting me hold this bird when he was done (she was banded, measured, photographed, and tagged with a radio transmitter) and release her, as he knew I had not handled live birds before and wanted to let me practice it. She was warm and quite calm, at least in terms of how little she struggled.

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Taken on May 26, 2011