Saturday, 23 April 2011

I was out at 06:30 this morning in temperatures that warranted just a tee shirt, amazing for late April, as I write this though, a thundery shower is dropping large hailstones, the first precipitation for weeks!

Most of this mornings patch walk was spent confirming just how many summer arrivals were residing on my patch, I counted a Min of 6 pairs of CHIFFCHAFF, 8 pairs of BLACKCAP, 5 pairs of SWALLOWS, 5 COMMON WHITETHROATS, one possibly paired up, 3 singing LESSER WHITETHROATS, two having arrived overnight, one in the College Grounds and one in the wooded headland at Migrant Alley. A single CUCKOO called for most of the morning, and two TURTLE DOVES sang, also from the wooded headland.

A couple of passage summer birds were also found today, which is always a pleasing aspect of my walks, a WHEATEAR was in the Tree Nursery, the second record from here this month out of the eight sightings, and a YELLOW WAGTAIL that flew over the College Grounds, calling loudly.

Other noteworthy flyovers were had from four GREYLAG GEESE, two GREY HERONS, 4 LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS, and 3 HERRING GULLS, whilst raptors were represented by the run of the mill SPARROWHAWK and KESTREL.

On the lakes today, 6 CANADA GEESE were seen, two on nests, also 2 male MALLARD, plus two MOORHEN as well as the male MANDARIN DUCK, back for the third day running, no sign of any Coots today though :-(

In all 49 species were seen, but nothing new for the month, the total of which remains two behind the best April tally of 76, surely I can equal that with a Swift and Garden Warbler in the next week ?

Above: One of the Greylag Geese. Below a GOLDCREST

This Large Red Damselfly was at my garden pond today, nice to see :-)

Lastly a Speckled Wood Butterfly, one of 6 butterfly species seen today


Marc Heath said...

A Mandarin is always a good bird in this part of Kent. It was a tough slog today, one of those frustrating days. Nice damselfly shots

Phil said...

I have no doubt that Swift and Garden Warbler will grace your patch before the end of April Warren. Nice to see a Damselfly at last!

Alan Pavey said...

Well done with the Damselfly, I've heard they're starting to appear, there was a Vagrant Emperor at Dunge today. Another Yellow Wag to great stuff :-)

Chris said...

Well let's hope you will see this nice warbler and swift to go up with the species list but you already have a good list.... Beautiful sighting today!

Anonymous said...

That`s a nice bright Large Red Damsel, Warren.

The thunder was rumbling non-stop for an hour & half up here yesterday.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Nice shot of the male Large Red Damselfly .
Got a good hours rain , with plenty of thunder to go with it late afternoon .

ShySongbird said...

Lovely damsel Warren, I haven't seen any yet this year.

It sounds like you will at least equal your best April tally. I have never seen a Mandarin in this area. I do hope the Coots haven't left!

No rain at all here.

Simon said...

Great selection of birds Warren. Nice damselfly photos mate!

Kingsdowner said...

Send us some of your rain please Warren! My allotment's a mixture of dust and concrete.
Nice pics of the whitefrote.