Monday, 25 October 2010

This afternoon, after work, I set out in brilliant late Autumn sunshine, to see if I could find one more new species for the month, so as to equal the best ever months species total of 78, a task that will be very difficult to achieve, especially on an afternoon visit. The most likely species to add to the months list will be a duck, and that would be a Mandarin Duck, or maybe an outside chance of a Coot, but I have never recorded an October coot before. So with those two species in mind I visited the lakes.

On the way, 3 GREEN WOODPECKERS were seen in the Small Holding, and a couple of female PHEASANTS were also seen there. The 'Not so' Wet Woods was home to a party of LONG TAILED TITS, with BLUE and GREAT TITS amongst them, I also heard MARSH TIT, COAL TIT and TREECREEPER calling as I passed.

I reached the lake and could hear a couple of NUTHATCH'S calling, but I was eager to scan the water for that elusive 78th species, I checked the main lake, then the ornamental lake then the small lake, peering into all the dark spaces created by the overhanging branches, but alas, no 78th species, I hung around for an hour in the hope of something dropping in, but I was clutching at straws really :-) I did get to see a pair of BULLFINCH'S, and another party of Long Tailed Tits as i waited in vain though.

The 78th species may come, if at all, in the form of a flyover, maybe a Little Egret, or a Marsh Harrier or Red Kite, now i'm getting carried away ! So it was with renewed optimism that I set out for the Tree Nursery and Migrant Alley, for a skywatch at both those points. I saw BLACK HEADED and HERRING GULLS, a few single SKYLARKS, 2 MEADOW PIPITS, 2 flocks of 30+ FIELDFARE, two flocks of 15+ CHAFFINCH, numerous WOODPIGEON, ROOKS, and JACKDAWS but nothing to add for the months list. As I was leaving for home, this SPARROWHAWK flew over, I swear it was winking at me !

I took a couple of photo's of the garden birds when I got home, just to brighten the page up a bit :-)
Top is Coal Tit
Middle is Blue Tit

Bottom is the ROBIN


Chris said...

Wow beautiful pictures mate! I envy you... I'm sorry Warren but I'll keep the waxwings for me, they are too rare over here and that's after all my favorite bird ;-) Well ok, if I get hundreds, I'll send two or three to you ;-)

Kelly said...

...the sparrowhawk in flight is beautiful, and I do love that little Robin--lots of color! I'll keep my fingers crossed for the next species!

Ken. said...

Hi Warren.
Let's hope that 1 ellusive species makes a appearance soon, keep your fingers crossed.
You have captured that Sparrowhawk just right again.Your getting plenty of practice.
Nice to see the Red Admiral photo from yesterday.

Derek Faulkner said...


The Sparrowhawk wasn't winking it was probably checking its make-up in the reflection from your head.
Stop worrying about that one more bird, we know you'll get it!

Marc Heath said...

The way things are going, that one more species may well be a flyover Waxwing, plenty today in East Kent by the sounds of it.

Bob Bushell said...

That's a nice selection of birds, especially the two Sparrowhawk pics.

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Waxwings going your way? - Hope we get some. Crossbills on the move you had them this year?


Sharon said...

Lovely photos Warren, love the Robin! You've still got just under a week for the elusive bird to show up - I'll keep my fingers crossed (& toes)!

Pete Woodruff said...

Warren, thats really interesting you've never recorded an October Coot.

As an example, on 7 October I counted 57 on the canal at Glasson Dock (you've seen this location mentioned a few times on Birds2blog) just showing how things vary in the bird world area by area in the UK.

ShySongbird said...

Love the photos particularly the Blue Tit and Robin and that Sparrowhawk is laughing about its daily visit I think :)

Anonymous said...

You`re not the only one clutching at straws Warren ;-)

Great set of photos.

Fraser Simpson said...

It probably was winking at you - you do very well with fly-over shots of this species!

Jellen said...

Fabulous shot of the sparrowhawk Warren, and the robin too. :o)