The conditions seemed perfect for finding my first Spotted Flycatcher of the year, but the hour long search around the College Grounds once again failed to turn one up. COAL TIT, GOLDCREST, SPARROWHAWK, BLACKCAP, and CHIFFCHAFF were the pick of the species recorded around the Gardens and campus this morning.
My next stop was at the Wooded Headlands where I had hoped for a 'purring' Turtle Dove and although none were heard, I did hear, then saw, a flyover YELLOW WAGTAIL, Ive done quite well for this species so far this spring.
More straining of the ears was done while at the Scrubby Woods, again hoping for that first Turtle Dove and again not hearing one, I did hear a distant CUCKOO though, sounded like it was coming from the nearby Golf course. The Garden Warblers have still not arrived here, but another WHITETHROAT was found, joining the Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs.
I checked up on the COOTS over at the lakes, and found one adult with a single youngster, but the other youngster could be with the other adult out of my sightline. The GREYLAG GOOSE is still incubating, while the only other birds on the water were 4 CANADA GEESE and 2 male MALLARDS.
My final hour of the patch visit was spent sky watching from my seat at Migrant Alley, where amongst the usual suspects were no fewer than 8 soaring BUZZARDS, all up together, what a sight ! Oh, and at last I saw my first SWIFTS (93,58) of the spring, when a group of 3 birds flew over :-)
|Male GREENFINCH at the College Grounds|
|JACKDAW, on the fence line at Migrant Alley|