Ringed Swan.

A couple of years ago after spotting some Sanderlings on Meon Shore with coloured leg rings  I searched online and found you could report such sightings to help with research Sanderling arrived on our shore in our winter before returning  North to their breeding grounds. Ringed birds had combinations of small colour rings.(rings are too small to have numbers that can be read at a distance) Sadly after spending time reporting a number of birds attaching photo’s and asking for feedback about these birds no reply was received. I would love to have known how far North these little bird had gone. For people to report ringed birds to help research surely it needs to be a two-way process.


Last week with the slight lifting of lockdown which allowed me to drive for a walk when visiting the sea I spotted a ringed Mute Swan. Colour rings enable people to observe and report birds they see at a distance. Checking online and entering orange leg ringed swan I found details of a Swan recording project and thought I would give sending information in another go and asked for feedback on this bird. The swan being a larger bird the coloured rings are numbered and can be read from a distance.


I was really pleased in a few days to get information on T4C from David Stone.

“T4C was initially ringed as an unsexed adult on 14 Jul 14 at Keyhaven, where the bird remained until 17 Feb 15. By 7 Apr 15 it was seen at Titchfield Haven, remaining until 19 Jul 15, but back at Keyhaven on 11 Oct 15 and 31 Oct 15. There is then a gap in my records until 30 Aug 19, again at Keyhaven and then your sighting in May 2020.

The bird was ringed as part of my long-term study of the swan population in the catchment of the Salisbury Avon. Titchfield Haven is outside my core study area, so it is always interesting to get reports of swans in the vicinity of the Haven. All sightings so far are of the bird alone or in a group, not paired or breeding, but it is possible that it was on a territory somewhere during the 2015 to 19 gap in sightings.”

Thank you for your interest and please let me know if you come across this bird, or other orange ringed ones in the future.