Before todays post, a quick welcome to dave, the Oxonhoath Birder ( see his link in my side bar). His patch is adjacent to mine - to the north, and on higher ground.
Meanwhile on my own patch, things have quietened down from the last two days. Even though I spent 3 hours this morning and 4 later on, I only managed to squeeze out 45 species! There was no change in the weather, still dull, damp and dreary, although there was a bright interlude around midday, but you would have missed it if you sneezed! What doesn't help either is the fact everyones back to work today, disturbance was everywhere!!
Just 2 YELLOWHAMMERS fed in the wildbird crop, and as I made my way to the smallholding a group of 9 HERRING GULLS flew over, both GREEN and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS were seen in the old orchard at the smallholding, as was a MOORHEN that had come out of the wet woods. The woods themselves are quite barron at this time of year birdwise, but there is a great show of Bluebells at the moment, the only birds that I did find there were a group of 6 drake MALLARDS on one of the pools, and a few BLUE and GREAT TITS. I could hear the CANADA GEESE on one of the lakes as I neared them, but thats all there was when I arrived, one of the CORMORANTS surveyed its domain from its favoured tree, and a SKYLARK sang from high above. The awaited Cuckoo hasn't found it's way to my patch yet, but as I listened at the scrub, BLACKCAPS, CHIFFCHAFFS, MISTLE THRUSH, SONGTHRUSH, DUNNOCK,WREN,ROBIN,COLARED DOVE,CHAFFINCH, GOLDFINCH and COAL TIT all sang, defying the gloom.
Crossing the tree nursery, a SPARROWHAWK went over, and two STOCK DOVES were on the bare part of the nursery, while on the part with shrubs on, a WHITETHROAT sang and a few LINNETS were displaying.
Migrant Alley was misty and quiet, a flock of 14 Herring Gulls were on one of the horse paddocks, and a KESTREL flew low over, alerted to me by the PIED WAGTAILS that fed on the ploughed field, these little black and white sentinels always give away the Raptors! SWALLOWS were around the college stables, collecting the mud from puddles, and the ever present colony of a dozen or so HOUSE SPARROWS were chirping from the buildings. Nothing new for the day list was seen around the college grounds and gardens, but a new Blackcap was singing by the pond.
That was about it for today, a hum-drum visit, but it will all change again.
NOTE: Tomorrow I am off out with the wife for a change,No not birding! (-: We're off to the coast, and I have been given orders to leave the bins at home! Next post will be on Thursday.
Below is the eggshell of a Songthrush, unfortunately it's been predated!
This Kestrel went over Migrant Alley, but the light was terrible, even in this bright spell!