Saturday, 17 September 2011

The fair weather of the last few days came to an end this morning, it was overcast and windy, but at least dry.

Many birds seem to have sensed the change in weather, and moved on, especially the summer birds, of which only CHIFFCHAFF, SWALLOW, and HOUSE MARTIN were recorded, although a passage YELLOW WAGTAIL was seen over Migrant Alley early on.

It wasn't just the Summer species that were hard to find this morning, BLACKBIRDS were few and far between, and the first one seen was the 27th species on the list, normally it's one of the first half dozen.

Two LONG TAILED TIT flocks were seen, one in the College Grounds and one over at the Small Holding, both had the regular BLUE and GREAT TITS feeding along with them, but the latter flock had two Chiffchaffs and a TREECREEPER with it.

There wasn't much else of note on a rather bog standard sort of visit, but the two raptors recorded were good ones for any patch - A BUZZARD that flew low over the Tree Nursery, and a PEREGRINE that was hunting over Migrant Alley, other flyovers, were 3 Gull species, LESSER BLACK BACKED, HERRING and BLACK HEADED, as well as a YELLOWHAMMER, two GREY HERONS and six SKYLARKS, which were headed SW.

As I finished the walk the first of a rash of showers rolled in, but once they passed, there were some sunny spells again, I was going to return to the fields and paddocks of Migrant Alley for a second look, but I felt a bit un well, maybe the start of one of those Autumn viruses   :-( So I instead took out a chair into the garden and watched the feeders, taking a few photo's of the Finch's there. It was interesting to watch a Hedgehog too, it was collecting nest material and dragging it to the bottom of the ivy covered wall, I wonder if it will over winter there ?  I also noted an Emperor Dragonfly.

Below are the Garden Finch's





Anonymous said...

I reckon the Hog will winter there, Warren. Never witnessed one building a hibernation home before.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Hedgelaying today down near Guildford , had 100+ (conservative estimate) House Martins and the odd Swallow , hawking for insects over the adjacent fields all day long .
At times , the sky was 'crowded' .
Hope the Hedgehog is successful with it's hibernation .

Bob Bushell said...

You still put up three wonders.

Marc Heath said...

Just out of interest what settings are you using for your shots, F5.6? Do you use centre spot for focus?

Rohrerbot said...

We've also had a change here as well. Birds are starting to come back with cooler temps. It's nice to have them around...not crazy about the wild cats though that try to get them. I love cats....just not outdoors because they really do some damage to our environment by killing so many of the local birds and other wildlife. However, they also make a nice meal for our local coyote populations.:)

Warren Baker said...

just been out to put hog food down ( sunfower hearts ) and found another Hog :-)

Warren Baker said...

Not keen on any uncontrolled domestic animals. Cats are a real problem here too!

Warren Baker said...


I do use center spot for focus, and I use the 'F' number that will give me the fastest shutter speed, generally F8 with the lenses I use. I like to use a higher F number if I can get the light.

Also I use the AEB, I set it to take one normal shot, and the other two shots under exposed by 1 third and two thirds repectively. This makes for a darker photo, but gives me a faster shutter speed, I only use it set this way in good light though. Hope you followed that !!! :-)