Thursday, 14 May 2009

Here at last!
A much better day as far as the weather was concerned, no wind, no rain, no mist and murk, just a normal day!

I found the SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (98) this morning on my way to work, it was in the same tree as I recorded the first one in last year, in the college grounds - remarkable. I didn't see it on the way home, but after a drink and a sandwich I went back out to see if I could photograph it.

I first of all paid a quick trip to the lakeside scrub area, lots of song today, in the kinder conditions WHITETHROAT, LESSER WHITETHROAT, GARDEN WARBLER, BLACKCAP, CHIFFCHAFF, TURTLE DOVE and CUCKOO all sang, it was an impressive sound to hear them all going together! Numbers of SONG THRUSH sang also, more than in recent weeks.

As I walked through the tree nursery on my way to migrant alley, I found my first NUTHATCH of the month at last! It was in one of the mature oaks, in a large garden, adjacent to the nursery. The first fledged DUNNOCK was seen being fed in the part of the nursery that still has trees in it.

At Migrant alley, a SKYLARK sang and PIED WAGTAILS went back and forth with beakfulls of food for their fledgings, two of which were seen, it looks like a good breeding season on my patch so far this year.

I finally got over to the College grounds to try to find the Spotted Flycatcher, It didn't take long, I found it in a white spruce tree, I heard it long before I saw it, they dont really have a song, just a series of high pitched squeaks, but as I listened more carefully, it did give some warbling sounds. I got as near as I dared, not wanting to scare it off, and took some photo's of it. The shots were a bit disappointing I must admit, but there will be other chances. Whilst taking the photo's, 2 KINGFISHERS came flying out of the cover lining the college stream, calling loudly as they flashed past me, another new species for the for the month. 66 now, just two more to equal the May record set last year.

The Spotted Flycatcher is the last breeding migrant species that had yet to arrive on my patch, it was 7 days later than the mean arrival date, but not the latest, that was in 2003 when they arrived on the 15th! Now all 'my' regular migrants are on the year list, it will be difficult to add many more species to it. Of the passage migrant species I might see, the most probable are Sedge Warbler, and Common Tern, but they are scarce on my patch!

Other birds of note seen around were KESTREL, SPARROWHAWK and PEREGRINE, as well as two Gull species LESSER BLACK BACK and HERRING.

Below is the first Spotted Flycatcher of the year -hurrah!
Below: Pied Wagtail with beakfull of fledgeling food
Below : Turtle Dove
lastly the first Nuthatch of the month.


Ken Browne. said...

Hi Warren.
May I be the 1st to congratulate you on finally getting your Spot Flycatcher. Your persistancy paid of. As you said, it was just a matter of time.
Now that you have all you hoped to get on your list, anything else now is a bonus. The Flycatcher picture is a nice record. Isn't it great to hear a mixture of bird songs all at once.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
After reading your post yesterday , I loggged on to see where to send the wreath - and there you are , out and about , recording No.98 , man-flu forgotten . Amazing what a Spotted Flycatcher can do .

Stewart said...

I'll give it a week then I might get one?

Kelly said...

Yeah! for the Spotted Flycatcher. That Pied Wagtail is a cool-looking bird. His markings are striking. Is he a common bird?

Tricia said...

Well done on the Spotted Flycatcher Warren.

Mike H said...


Wel done on your flycatcher! and foto as well!

Still waiting to see mine in the same area as last year and before.

ShySongbird said...

Well done on the Spotted Flycatcher and a lovely photo of it, also well done with the Nuthatch. Strange you should mention how much birdsong there was as I noticed how much there was in the garden last evening, they all seemed in particularly good voice.

ShySongbird said...

Hi again Warren, if you have a moment would you mind taking a look at Sheila's site to ID a possible Whitethroat/Lesser Whitethroat/Garden Warbler?

She has photos of it on the 14th of May and also the 11th of May.


Chris said...

Hi Warren,
Nice you got the flycatcher. some of them sometime visit us, but rarely anyway. yeh I was very happy to see the garganey over here. It seldom happens, and my sighting even went into the Scarcity report ;-)
I hope that like for us the forecast is good for you and that we will enjoy some more story about your patch. i cans end you some species if you want ;-)
I'm starting to think the same about my number of species. I've seen 73 so far, and even if some common are not on the list yet (Such as puffin, guillemot, kittiwake and red-necked phalarope), it is gonna be hard to see more than that except if some rare migrant come to Reykjavik... We will see.
have a nice week-end.