Saturday, 4 August 2012

Green Woodpecker
 Thanks to all involved in the ID of the Small Red Eyed Damselfly in yesterdays post, it now gets confirmed as a new Damsel species for my patch  :-)

The overnight rain cleared around 06:30hrs, leaving everything dripping wet - yet again, I don't think my boots have dried out all summer! My initial enthusiasm for the first August full patch walk waned a bit as I realised there were few passage birds to be found, it's still early yet though  :-) A SPOTTED FLYCATCHER and a GARDEN WARBLER in the Scrubby Woods adjacent to the lakes were undoubtedly passage birds though, they were found within a mixed feeding flock of BLUE and GREAT TITS, CHAFFINCH, GOLDCREST, WREN, ROBIN and CHIFFCHAFF, also the first NUTHATCH (48), COAL TIT (49) and TREECREEPER (50) of the month were found with them. A scan of the lakes only produced a GREY HERON and a MOORHEN, not even a Mallard today.

Early on in the walk I had been over to the College Grounds, where the family of Spotted Flycatchers were feeding together, another family party were also seen, that of a BULLFINCH (51) at least two newly fledged young were observed with both adults, this is the 42nd species to be confirmed as successfully breeding on my patch this year.

Only one Gull species flew over, that of the HERRING GULL, but 3 Raptor species were recorded, they were the KESTRELS, a SPARROWHAWK carrying breakfast, and three BUZZARDS circling low over the Greenhouse Copse, a trickle of SWIFTS continue to pass through, but no House Martin for the months list, SWALLOW, WHITETHROAT, and BLACKCAP were the other summer species found this morning.

 The YELLOWHAMMER in the wheat at the Pub Field was singing, and a SKYLARK plus 28 CANADA GEESE were in the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, all species not seen on every full patch walk, the percentage of sightings this year per full patch walk for these species are :-
Yellowhammer 36.6% , 
Skylark             63.4%
Canada Goose  83%

Ten Years ago the percentage of walks that those same species were recorded on were as follows :-
Yellowhammer  86.2%
Skylark              86.2%
Canada Goose   57.3%
A big decline for both Yellowhammer and Skylark, but a rise for Canada Goose, this follows figures nationally.

A couple more photo's from this morning.
Chiffchaff - shame it was behind the twig!
As soon as I moved for a better shot, off it went   :-)


Marc Heath said...

Like the Green Woodpecker shot, very artistic and proof that you do not always need to crop tightly. Something I should learn how to do more of.

Little Brown Job said...

Lovely shot of the Woodpecker Warren.

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Marc,and LBJ
I try and mix it up a bit !

Phil said...

Damn and blast Warren!!
I thought that was a Small Red-eyed yesterday but didn't have the confidence to call it.
That would have been a first for me, putting you right!!:-)

Warren Baker said...

Phil, I didn't have the sense to check it properly when I found it, I really should stop assuming things to be what they are not !

Pete Woodruff said...

Thumbs up for the Green Woodpecker pic Warren....nice one.

Rohrerbot said...

I like your comparisons here. I wonder if this trend is universal in all parts of the world with the bird species. It seems that you folks over there are keeping great records of your butterflies. Why is there such a big decline going on over there? Is there not an environmental agency in place to monitor all the construction, etc? Here, it's a mixed bag. Some states are excelling at preservation while others are not doing anything at all....meanwhile the drought and wildfires have had a huge impact on us this year....and it's been increasing. Scary stuff.

Warren Baker said...

It's all about habitat destruction mostly, there is an old attitude here, that persists down through the generations of landowners and farmers, that the countryside has to be neat and tidy. Hedgerows are needlessly flailed to bits, grasses and bramble are slashed and burned.

We have lots of agencies and charities over here, but many are toothless organisations, or run by the wrong people with hidden agendas, its a right mess!

Rohrerbot said...

That is really sad. It's a cultural thing then....that everything has to be tidy. But when it all grows back, it looks so nice and wonderful. I can see if it's used to control the West Nile Virus with mosquitoes, etc. but if it's just to keep a nice green square for a cup of tea, then the critters are going to disappear. What an interesting predicament!

This would be a great examination all on its own. We speak of African wetlands disappearing, Amazon trees getting cut down for wood, America's love of suburbia growth and monotone living, and your neck of the woods it's all about the proper appearance:) Although, there's more to it than just those things....but what if we could all focus on our primary issue in our own countries and try to change our habits/ways of thinking? Otherwise, we are going to keep losing.

Warren Baker said...

You've hit the nail on the head, you some it up nicely !

Christian said...

Still never seen a Green Woodpecker Warren - nice shot.