Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Once the early cloud dispersed, it was another warm and uncomfortably humid day, however, the first 4 hours of the day, spent on my patch from 06:00, were pleasant enough.

Another excellent bird species total of 54 was recorded, and six of those were new to this month, plus ive got to add the LITTLE OWL (53) that was heard last night as I was locking up :-)

The first new addition to the month today was a GREY WAGTAIL (54) that flew up from one or the small ponds in the College Grounds, it flew over giving it's distinctive call as I was watching a loosely associating mixed flock of birds. These were in the the large Oaks and line of pine trees, and included all the usual species, TREECREEPER, COAL TIT, CHIFFCHAFF, SPOTTED FLYCATCHER, GOLDCREST and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, along with the more common, but not any more numerous BLUE and GREAT TITS. I was failing miserably at getting a photo of any of them, so moved on, but as I did I heard the rattled call of a MISTLE THRUSH (55), I tracked it down and found 3 in all, it's been a fair few weeks since this species has been seen.

The third new species for the month involved this little brown job below
a WILLOW WARBLER (56), it was in the Greenhouse Grounds on my return journey, my first on the patch since April, it gave a faint and short bit of song, but nothing like it sounds in spring, a song I very much miss here.

I didn't expect to many more surprises, but whilst over at the lakes and Scrubby Woods, a PEREGRINE (57) flew over, a very welcome addition to the August list, especially as the local birds, of which this was probably one, have lost their home until 2013 whilst ''their'' Tower is being refurbished. The lake today was much as it has been for a week or so now with the usual MALLARDS, MOORHENS, GREY HERON, plus the not so usual KINGFISHER and the Geese, both GREYLAG and CANADA, of which it's worth mentioning that each evening and morning for the last few days, great skeins of them, around 300 birds in all can be seen going to and from their roost.

Around 10:00am it started to get hot and humid, and the birds were getting fewer and fewer, so I called it a day, but not before adding a LESSER WHITETHROAT (58) to the months list, seen and heard in the Tree Nursery.

Later in the early afternoon, I went over to my sky watching seat at Migrant Alley, I could only take the humid heat for an hour, but it was worth it as a SPARROWHAWK was seen flying over, plus another sighting of the Peregrine, also a COMMON BUZZARD (59) glided over slowly, giving me another addition for for Augusts species total.

As well as the Willow warbler, I photographed this splendidly camouflaged Chiffchaff, as it sat preening in the sunshine.

I thought i'd sneak this Great Tit photo in too, it was visiting my garden pond this afternoon

The only butterfly photo today was of this Large White.

Lastly, a feather, that of the JAY, probably the most beautiful feather of any species - in my opinion :-)


Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Some good sightings there Warren on what looked to be a very hot day for you accordng to xcweather.
Only 20 more for a new world record - you should do that easy mate. Worrying to learn you haven't had a willow warbler since April though



Jason K said...

Stunning photos of the Chiffy Warren.

Keep an eye on your patch over the next couple of days mate...things are starting to move again (had Redstart on my patch today and Redstart & Wheatear just off patch yesterday)

Anonymous said...

59 !!!! You`re leaving me standing, Warren.

Warren Baker said...

20 more Dave!!
I can think of 6-7 possibles, but as for 20! I'll need some migrants to drop in :-)

Warren Baker said...

Cheers Jase,
As I said to Davo, i'm gonna need some of those migrants species :-)

Greenie said...

Warren ,
You kept the counter moving in very humid conditions .
Wouldn't argue re the Jay feather .

Marc Heath said...

There is something about a Jay feather that is special. One of my most wanted flight shots is exactly that showing that lovely colour in the wing. You nearly got it, you just need the bird now to go with it!

Rob said...

I agree on the beauty of that Jay feather - quite a rare find I imagine.

Alan Pavey said...

Hi Warren, that was another selection of stuff and the month list had a good boost to by the looks of it :-)

Tim James said...

Hi Warren. Lovely preening Chiffchaff shots. You're right too, I think, about the Jay feather, although the Kingfisher has some pretty spectacular blues in its armoury.