Saturday, 6 March 2010

There was a strong, bitingly cold wind present for the first full patch walk of March, making for an uncomfortable and frustrating outing. There was little chance of catching up with an early spring migrant in those conditions, so it was back to searching for the usual fare, of which there are a few that are still missing from the March list.

One of those was seen when a pair of GREYLAG GEESE (52) flew over the Wet Woods early on, in the woods themselves it was a bit more sheltered from the conditions, but the noise of bare tree tops rattling against each other, and the wind blowing through them made it hard to hear any passerine calls, just MOORHEN, MALLARD and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER were seen.

On the lake, I was surprised to see that the BARNACLE GOOSE had returned, it was with 6 CANADA GEESE, that and the long staying COOT made for nice a change from seeing the usual mallard and Moorhen.

In the adjacent scrub 2 TREECREEPERS, 2 NUTHATCH, 1 MARSH TIT, 2 COAL TIT and 3 GOLDCREST were found, while overhead the second new bird for the month flew over calling - a SISKIN (53), the small flocks of these birds seem to have moved on now, and only singles or two's and three's at most are recorded now.

On the way back through the Wet Woods, LONG TAILED TITS were seen, again, they have split from the roving feeding parties that were found in earlier weeks. Coming back along the Small Holding 5 BULLFINCH were seen feeding on the blackthorn buds, and a SPARROWHAWK zipped past, heading for the woods.

Exactly 40 species were recorded on the first half of the walk, and despite a 2 hour session around Migrant Alley, the Tree Nursery and the College grounds with it's gardens and stream-side habitat, just 6 more species were added to the day list. All but one, the ROOK, were flyovers, these were, STOCK DOVE, HERRING and BLACK HEADED GULL, KESTREL and most importantly another new species for the month, one of the PEREGRINES (54) at last decided to leave it's perch on the tower and venture out over Migrant Alley. Ive still not found a Skylark for the March list, and Meadow Pipits havn't been seen since January, so thats two to find tomorrow!

Later this afternoon I added BRAMBLING to the daylist, when the long staying bird visited my garden feeders again, so ending the day with 47 species, a reasonable total for early March.

Below is the garden Brambling

These are WOODPIGEONS, hundreds flew over the lake area early this morning.

Something different to look at today, a Rabbit !


Phil and Mandy said...

Your right Warren, the wind was freezing, I gave up after an hour. Nice photos again, like the brambling shot and bunny.

ShySongbird said...

It has been cold here too but sunny. Glad you are still seeing the Brambling (and the Coot :) ) That Rabbit looks well fed! Please don't mention Peregrines, at least Greenie sends me flowers rather than (almost) non existent birds :)

Greenie said...

Warren ,
What , no tower picture today ?
Like the Brambling shot , can't remember a Winter with so few .
Same with Siskins , only saw them at Mote Park this year .

Kingsdowner said...

Smart Brambling - none around here at all, and indeed no siskins.

Pete Woodruff said...

Yeh....I'm really cheesed off with this cold weather, you stand around either looking for or counting birds and you're starved through for the rest of the day....'uncomfortable and frustrating' sums it up nicely.

Keep up the good work Warren.

Anonymous said...

I`m also hoping for some regular species Warren. Kingfisher, Grey Wagtail & Willow Tit haven`t been seen since January.