Saturday, 26 January 2013

The penultimate January full patch walk this morning turned out to be one of the better ones this month, a very good total of 49 species was recorded, in some much improved weather.

Early on in the walk I crossed Migrant Alley, which was full of FIELDFARE, maybe 200 birds in all, with just as many STARLINGS with them as well as a few REDWING, also there, seen on the sheep pasture, were 8 BLACK HEADED GULLS with 3 LAPWING, however all these birds were flushed more than once by this SPARROWHAWK!
A new species for the year list was found along the drainage ditch that runs along the NW edge of Migrant Alley, a COMMON SNIPE (67) flew up, called a few times, then circled round before flying off North, a good species to get on my patch  :-), it puts this months species list just one behind the record  January tally of 68.

The College Grounds was busier than has been for some time, and it was good to see a few GREENFINCH'S, some of which were singing in the sunny conditions, also heard to sing here were TREECREEPER, CHAFFINCH and DUNNOCK, all adding to the springlike feel of the morning. A flock of LONG TAILED TITS moved through the gardens, but proved difficult to photograph, also of note in the gardens were BULLFINCH, COAL TIT and GOLDCREST.
Long Tailed Tit
Walking back out over Migrant Alley, to get to the Greenhouse Grounds and Tree Nursery, flyovers from GREY HERON, CORMORANT, GREYLAG GOOSE and COMMON BUZZARD were had. At the Greenhouse Grounds a small flock of SISKIN were seen in the Alders there, plus a couple of PIED WAGTAILS along with the regular BLACKBIRDS, SONGTHUSH, ROBINS, WRENS, CHAFFINCH, GOLDFINCH and 3 more Bullfinch.
Siskin (Male)
Siskin (Male)
Siskin (Female)
The Tree Nursery was given a thorough search, and once again I flushed up a JACK SNIPE which plonked back down 30m away, 3 MEADOW PIPITS and two GREEN WOODPECKERS were also found here, plus the resident KESTREL pair.

Over at the lakes I was surprised to see them still frozen over, so nothing was found on them, but the adjacent Scrubby Woods had 4 more Bullfinch, a NUTHATCH, and the MARSH TIT, a singing Coal Tit along with a drumming GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER continued the spring theme for the morning.

The Wet Woods was home to a mixed feeding flock of BLUE TITS, GREAT TITS, Goldcrest, Nuthatch, and Treecreeper, while in the background a STOCK DOVE was heard to sing its simple song :-)
Treecreeoer in the Wet Woods
The feeling that spring is just a few weeks away was confirmed by this sighting of my first Butterfly of the year - a Red Admiral, it was a real pleasure to be out today, no wind, rain, cold, or gloom  :-)
Red Admiral


Pete Woodruff said...

Today's pics of the Siskin are excellent.

Interesting you also saw c.200 Fieldfare today. I've seen one of your images of one on 'another blog' and it is an excellent example of your photographic achievements Warren....well done.

Warren Baker said...

Blimey Pete, that was a quick comment, ive only just published this post :-)

Thanks for you kind sentiments though :-)

Marc Heath said...

What a lovely day, more of that weather please. Great photos, the 2nd Siskin being my pic of your shots today.

Warren Baker said...

Hi Marc,
It was like a different world out there today!

Lancs and Lakes Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Red Ad - wasn't expectin that to put in an appearance at the end!!! Well done - must be summer! Not here it ain't



ShySongbird said...

A lovely post altogether today Warren. Fabulous Siskin photos! My favourite butterfly too :-) I know they can be seen on sunny Winter days but I do think it's a great sighting and really lends a promise of Spring to your optimistic, sunny post...great stuff :-)

Deano said...

Splendid set of shots Warren. No chance of a flutter up here mate..what with 5in of fresh snow on the ground.

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Songbird,
Wont be long now before its sun and flutters!

Adam said...

nice butterfly

Ken. said...

I will start with saying congrat with the first sighting of a Red Admiral butterfly.
Your day was a very good one, some really nice photo's especially the male Siskin.
You are on a good count for January, and stere is still a few days to go, fingers crossed that you beat you best record for the month.
Finally you seem to be amassing all the Fieldfares over there, what is your secret :-)

Anthony Miners said...

Lovely collection of images love the Sparrowhawk and Treecreeper.