Sunday, 13 September 2009

Early sunshine gave way to a blanket of cloud this morning, and a cool northerly wind blew. The birds were not easy to locate first thing, with just 10 species being seen or heard in the hour between 06:00 and 07:00.

As the day warmed up a little, the birds came to life, but there were very few summer visitors left, 4 CHIFFCHAFF, 2 BLACKCAP, a few HOUSE MARTIN and SWALLOW over Migrant Alley and the college stables. A couple of exciting migrants did turn up though, a WHINCHAT was sat atop the maize, enjoying the last of the sunshine, but it didn't stay around long, as there were a few dog walkers about - with loose dogs. I had a look around the scrubby headland at migrant alley, and I was surprised to see the REDSTART fly out from the same bush as yesterday, it went deep into cover, where it started to call, a real bonus bird, as previous Redstarts have only stayed for one day. A YELLOW WAGTAIL also flew over calling, I can't really grumble about that little trio on my patch!

47 species were seen in the 5 hour visit, but a few regulars didn't show today, no Geese were seen, or Yellowhammer, Kestrel or Hobby. I did hear the latter off patch, calling loudly, confirmed by the Oxon Hoath birder ( they were on his patch) and a NUTHATCH did come to my garden feeders later in the day, so thats 48 for the day really.

Other noteworthy sightings were a SPARROWHAWK, and 75 BLACK HEADED GULLS that flew over in a protracted flock. A Common buzzard was seen to the south of my patch too.

Above and below the Whinchat, not particularly clear photo's, but I liked the ripe maize in the top pic. :-)
Below is a Swallow, seen 2 hours after the Whinchat, look at the light difference!


Chris said...

ell done on the winchat. This is a bird I've not seen yet. The weather is about the same here. No time to bord until this afternoon at 14PM and nothing special was there but eider ducks and gulls. A very poor bird week end indeed!

Anonymous said...

Same weather up here too, Warren. It started off promising, but quicky went downhill.

Kelly said...

...the Whinchat does look handsome sitting on the's a beautiful photo. It's amazing how quickly your day goes from bright to clouded... Sounds like a good birding day to me. 47 species in 5 hours is wonderful!

ShySongbird said...

Lovely photos of the Whinchat, Warren and also the Swallow.

Sorry to read you and your wife haven't been feeling too well, I hope things are improving.