On March 31st a new face arrived at the reserve. Katherine Fraser is from UEA in Norwich and she is here to study nightingales. Directed by the BTO-(British Trust for Ornithology at Thetford) she will be trapping male nightingales here and at Grafham in order to attach tiny radio transmitters to their tails. These will fall off as the birds moult. The purpose of the study is to find out more about the territorial behaviour of nightingales. The work is sponsored by the BTO and the Friends of Paxton Pits Nature Reserve.
Her first task is to make really detailed maps so that she can use a GPS to locate birds. Then she will monitor the birds as they arrive to see which territories are taken up first. After selecting the best males to tag, the birds will be lured into nets by playing tape recordings of their songs.
There will soon be a new leaflet to explain the work she is doing.
In a few weeks time, Katherine will know more about nightingales than any of us.
Good luck Katherine.