With a very strong easterly winds, and forecast rain encroaching on the island, it was again impossible to employ any standard catching techniques. So during the dry spell at the start of the day, we baited the gull trap we had placed the previous day, however, being the end of summer, and presumably because of good volumes of natural food, we failed to attract many birds to the trap. With little activity and with the first belt of rain coming across the island, that ended our hopes for any ringing for the day.
Our walk the previous night however had proved more eventual, and resulted in a further Purple Sandpiper being processed. We feel like in the short time we have been lamping here, we have learned a lot and identified the sites which show the most promise.
With a clear sky above, the moon shone brightly on the wet mud along the western side of the island, making any approach impossible, despite there being good numbers of waders present. To add to this, about 2 hours after dark, the first glimmer of the Aurora picked up, and within another couple of hours, produced one of the brightest auroras I have seen so far, at one point covering a large portion of the sky above us, spectacular, but increasing the difficulty for the task at hand!
So with the rain setting in, and an early start beckoning for our journey home, that ended the Varanger Ringing project 2017. A follow up post will be posted in the following days discussing the project, results, and the future. Exciting stuff!