Saturday, 18 May 2013

A full patch walk was undertaken today, in mostly cloudy conditions and a light wind, but still a bit on the cool side for May.

None of the 47 species encountered today were additions for the months list, i've a feeling that this May will go down as one of the quietest recorded here. The regular spring Migrants that stay to breed, have all arrived now, apart from the Spotted flycatcher and Garden warbler, which are probably not going to arrive now, especially the Garden warbler, while the Lesser Whitethroat and Cuckoo just passed through, and wont be breeding here this year for the first time since I have been recording, that's a big hole in the summer species list here!

None-the-less, I continue to search for the fledglings that prove Successful breeding for the species that are here, unfortunately no new ones of those were found either today!   :-) The two MOORHEN families seen last week at the College Grounds continue to survive, one has at least 4 chicks, the other at least 5.
Moorhen plus chick at the College Grounds
As Above  :-)
PIED WAGTAIL, TREECREEPER, SONGTHRUSH, ROBIN, GREENFINCH, and STARLING were all seen at the College carrying food, their young will soon be fledging. A few more fledged ROOKS have appeared, they were seen on the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, while on the adjacent  paddocks there were 9 CANADA GEESE and 6 GREYLAG GEESE all failed breeders I suspect, also a good number of LINNETS were seen, 26 in all.

An early sky watch from my seat overlooking the sheep pasture and paddocks provided lots of SWIFT sightings, at one stage the sky was filled with them, before they all passed through, only one HOUSE MARTIN was seen though. KESTREL and BUZZARD were up hunting early, and a procession of Gulls flew in from all directions, alighting on the Ashes lane Field that was being harrowed again, at least 30 HERRING and 4 LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS dropped in. The WHITETHROAT called briefly from the Greenhouse Grounds, hopefully they will breeding there, only one of two pairs on my patch this year.

I moved on to the Scrubby Woods and Lakes, via the Small Holding and Wet Woods, adding all the regular common species, except Nuthatch, not seen one for a few days now. I checked the GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS nest in the Wet Woods, and all was quiet, I suspect the female bird is sitting on eggs now.

Only the COOT family was of any interest on the lakes, they continue to thrive, and a pair of Canada Geese kept the feral BARNACLE GOOSE company on the main lake today.
'Feral' Barnacle Goose - helps pack out my year list  :-)
A look around the Scrubby Woods was good for BLACKCAP, CHIFFCHAFF, GOLDCREST, COAL TIT, BULLFINCH, another Treecreeper and a LONG TAILED TIT pair. All very average at the moment here though  :-)

A couple of garden bird, 'blog brighteners' to end with ;
Here's the BLACKBIRD, collecting food for her young that are hidden in the nest in the boundary hedge, they are at least 7 days old now, another week to go, fingers crossed  :-)


Gravel Pit Birder said...

hi warren
i guess it must be the blackbirds second brood? the blackbirds that visit our garden have been collecting nesting material, though i never any juveniles from the first clutch, so maybe they didnt make it.
something i mesnt to include in my blog today was the fact i havent seen any juveniles on the pits, no moorhens, coots, mallards, g c grebe...which i think is quite amazing. i thought there would have been some by now.
im guessing you are correct about the garden warbler and spot fly, which is a shame.
the cuckoo calling on site at the pits certainly covers a large area and can be quite distant at times.

Marc Heath said...

Nice clean shots, they all count Warren.

Warren Baker said...

Everything is so late this year Graham, Hopefully some of these birds will have fledgling young about very soon now.