Saturday, 1 October 2011

The month got off to a good start, when at 12:10am last night a TAWNY OWL was heard calling from my house, sounded like it was over in the Wet Woods. I was out at 06:15 this morning, eager to start a new months sightings, which initially went well, JACKDAW, WOODPIGEON, BLACKBIRD, ROBIN, PIED WAGTAIL, and CHAFINCH were the first half dozen species on the list, which was enhanced nicely when a LESSER REDPOLL was heard calling as it flew over, my first of the Autumn.

Walking through the Greenhouse Complex I added GOLDCREST, DUNNOCK, WREN, and flyover HERRING GULL, a CHIFFCHAFF and CARRION CROW called along the border hedge as I crossed into Migrant Alley. It was here that things deteriorated markedly, as a dense fog rolled in from the east, cutting visibility down to just 30 meters, and there was me hoping for a photo of a spectacular sunrise - just like the ones ive been witnessing all week on the way to work, what is it with weekends!!!

I trudged on through the damp and humid conditions but little was added of note, I heard a GREEN WOODPECKER and a MAGPIE out in the sheep pasture somewhere, as well as a PHEASANT and the ROOKS, the LINNETS were just visible on one of the paddocks as were the STARLINGS, but nothing else.

Into the College Grounds, and I managed to winkle out a few common species, GOLDFINCH, JAY, MOORHEN, COLLARED DOVE, BLUE TIT, GREAT TIT, and MISTLE THRUSH, a GREY HERON flew from the college stream, where for once I remembered to creep up on the crossing point where the KINGFISHER sits. I sneaked up to within 6 meters of it, but it was hidden by a bank of nettles, and as soon as I stuck my lens up above the nettles the Kingfisher was off in a blue blur, one day!!

The HOUSE SPARROWS were recorded for the month at the college stables, but they proved the last birds to be added to the list, as I walked back through Migrant Alley, the Pub Field and the Tree Nursery.

I was in two minds whether to bother with the second part of the walk, but decided as it was the first of the month I would finish the visit, but it was very poor, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, LONG TAILED TIT, BULLFINCH, SONG THRUSH  GREENFINCH, and MALLARD were the sum total of the Small Holding, Wet Woods, lakes and Scrubby woods combined!

The sun finally broke through around 10am, but my walk was almost finished, I did however sit over at Migrant Alley for 40mins, in some most welcome warm sunshine, and added SKYLARK, MEADOW PIPIT, BLACK HEADED GULL and a pair of KESTRELS to the months list, also a lone SWALLOW flew over, which I wished good luck upon, knowing it was on an epic 6000 mile journey!

So a total of 41 species kicks off the month, which was incremented by one when a BLACKCAP was seen in my garden later in the afternoon, along with a chiffchaff, very Autumnal.  It's still a long way behind last Octobers record haul of 77 though, which I do not expect to get anywhere near this year, last year was quite a spectacular October!!

Brown Argus

Butterflies were out in small numbers once the fog had gone, and I was not surprised to record Comma, Small White and Red Admiral, but this Brown Argus was a bit of a bonus for October  :-)

Brown Argus Underwing

The Robin below was photographed in the fog, not a very good medium for bird photography as everything seems to be backlit.



Bob Bushell said...

The Brown Argus is stiil here, fantastic photos.

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Not a bad start there Warren - and who knows what the month will bring. Remember the old adage poor start; good finish...

Go for it mate



Pete Woodruff said...

Excellent butterfly pics Warren.

I too am having problems posting comments on some blogs, but not the ones with the same set up you have.

Anonymous said...

Poor start for me as well, Warren. Forecast to be a bit cooler for next week, which might be a good thing.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
If only leaving comments was the only problem .
I hoped that the new Blogger would do away with all the old problems , but it just seems to have added more .
It's driving me mad at times .
That BA is very fresh , could be the temperatures have encouraged a third brood .
Coppicing in yesterday's heat was interesting to say the least .

Jason K said...

What a stunning Argus Warren...I've not seen one on my patch for a while now.