Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Whilst walking home from work this afternoon, I saw that the tower in Hadlow was being readied for its renovation. Large nets were being draped over it from the top. What effect this will have on the pair of peregrines that use the tower to roost, and as a resting place by day, will remain to be seen, they will almost certainly have to move off, but will they come back after the work is finished ? Only time will tell.

Another bird of prey was a pleasant sight as I crossed Migrant Alley, a BUZZARD wheeled it's way over, heading eastwards, putting up the 40 odd BLACK HEADED GULLS and about the same number of ROOKS that were feeding on the sheep pasture.

Pulses of drizzle fell for the 90 minutes I was out this afternoon, making for another camera-less walk, not that there would have been much to photograph. There is a distinct lack of small birds on my patch at the moment, especially finch's, but Tits are also down in number, even at my garden feeders this is noticeable.

I did record some birds though, both GREAT SPOTTED and GREEN WOODPECKER were seen in the Small holding, MALLARDS were still thinking about nesting in the Wet Woods, where a TREECREEPER called but went unseen.

On the Lakes it was a case of Mallards and MOORHEN again, the mallards looked very nervy, ready at a moments notice to take off, I wonder if it's the constant gas cannons that make them like it ? The loudness of them were mitigated somewhat by the change in wind direction, now taking the blast away from the lakes.

Around the scrubby woods I found a few SISKIN in a small Alder tree, and BULLFINCH'S called from several places, I reckon up to six birds were involved, although I didn't see a single one! A GOLDCREST was heard, and upon investigation I found two feeding together in a Hawthorne tree. Another quick scan of the lake was had before I left, ever hopeful of a Little Grebe appearing from nowhere, but it wasn't to be, so I set off towards the Pub Field and Tree Nursery. Just as I arrived at the Pub Field, so did a female SPARROWHAWK, it put up at least 60 FIELDFARE that were on the maize stubbles there, in the Tree Nursery the removal of the shrubs and young trees is going apace now, and all I saw were a group of 7 female Pheasants. By now the sky had gone very dark, and the wind picked up, bringing with it some heavier rain, so it was off home for me :-)


Alan Pavey said...

Your patch, sounds as though it's 'having a short rest', a bit like mine but they have both been fairly active for the start of the year :-)

Still some nice birds for you today though.

Sharon said...

Such a shame about the Peregrines site :(
It's odd to hear about the smaller birds not being in high numbers in your patch - would the cold spell have killed a fair few off?
In reply to your comment, Dobbies got in touch with me about linking to my blog a while back - I think they did with ShySongbird too. Then they asked me to guest post for them which is up on their blog today. I check their site about twice a week & noticed yours there yesterday :)

Greenie said...

Warren ,
That dark sky and heavier rain gave us a good soaking whilst finishing off some hedgelaying .
Very quiet birdwise , the best on offer , 3 Fieldfares flying over and Song Thrush and Nuthatch calling .

Warren Baker said...

I think the birds just move on when the food supply is exhausted,I dont think this winter killed off anymore than a normal winter would of done. As Alan says, they have been quite active up until a few days ago, I suspect they will be back when it warms up and a fresh supply of insects become available :-)

ShySongbird said...

What! No more Spot (or not spot) the Peregrine on the Tower photos!! ;) Surely not :(

Warren Baker said...

fingers crossed they will return, so I can get some more of those cracking close ups :-)

Paul said...

Hi Warren, It will be a real shame if the Hadlow Tower Peregrines do not return. I have viewed them from both the Church yard, and the opposite side in the field. I have also seen them in action, over various parts of Hadlow too, they are fantastic birds, and I really hope they stay local.

Ken. said...

Hi Warren.
Shame if the work on the tower does effect the Peregrines, and their possible return, fingers crossed they do.
It might also be quieter at your patch but at least your stil seeing some good species.

Wilma said...

The peregrines that nest in downtown Rochester have been pretty adaptable to changes to their favorite perches due to construction. But they have quite a few alternative choices within a small area so they don't have to move more than a city block or 2. I hope yours have some nearby alternative sites to keep them local.