Another day ringing in the garden, another Woodpigeon.
We opened a net in the garden between showers today; it was fairly successful with three Blue Tit, two Goldfinch, one Dunnock, one Greenfinch, the Woodpigeon and a pair of Coal Tits. The Coal Tits were particularly instructive; the female was a 2cy whilst the male was a 3+cy. Both were in active wing moult but the difference in the unmoulted primary coverts was striking between the two birds.
2cy female Coal Tit above — N.B. worn brown alula and unmoulted primary coverts — and 3+cy male Coal Tit below with greyer less worn alula and primary coverts.
We aged the Woodpigeon as a 2cy. Most of the wing coverts are juvenile, brownish and fringed pale. The bird is in active wing moult (new feathers arrowed blue); it had moulted all its primaries during its post juvenile moult along with one inner and two outer secondaries (arrowed red); the 'tertials' and four middle secondaries are retained juvenile feathers (arrowed yellow).
Additionally, the bird had retained one tail feature.
The bird was a very dull individual with very little white in the neck. Even taking into account that this is a fairly young bird, it should be a female.
All photos © Fabian Meijer