Friday, 11 October 2013

Early showery rain cleared this morning, leaving a dry and bright few hours, before moderate rain set in around 11:30hrs, lasting for the rest of the day.

It was a good couple of hours spent out though, one of the first birds I saw as I left home and walked along Ashes lane, was a flyover PEREGRINE (63), just a few seconds later a SPARROWHAWK also went over  :-)

I cut across into the Greenhouse Grounds, and had the good fortune to be looking skywards just as a LITTLE EGRET (64) flew high over, heading south, two new October species inside 20 mins, not bad at all  :-) I noted a CHIFFCHAFF singing from a nearby large garden, the only one recorded today, then just as I was thinking I had used up all my luck for the day I spied a real mega for my patch, - a RING OUZEL (109,65), an absolutely brilliant species to have here, and a fantastic addition to this years patch list! It flew into a dense bush in the Greenhouse Grounds, so I waited for it to come out again, hoping to get a photo, it did re emerge, but it was too quick for me, and back it went into cover. I walked off to my sky watching seat, some 60 meters away, and sat and waited again, and sure enough, the Ring Ouzel, which was a female, came out to feed on the hawthorn berries, I had some good views of it for a minute or so, but it was flushed off by one of the Greenhouse workers, emerging from his caravan for an early morning smoke, just one of the ''fly's in the ointment'' that I have to endure here on my patch! I watched the Ring Ouzel fly off and re orientate itself for a minute or so, before it dropped down just a short distance from the NW border of my patch, maybe it will return at some point.

This is just the third record of Ring Ouzel in the 12 years I have studied my patch, the first was an Autumn record, also in October, back in 2010, the other concerned a spring record in April 2011. The addition of Ring Ouzel to the year list means my target of 109 species that I set for this year has been achieved, this being the average number of species recorded in the previous 5 years. Still a way to go to beat the record of 113 species recorded in 2010 though!

I carried on my visit, walking a circuit of Migrant Alley, noting a few flyover MEADOW PIPITS and SKYLARKS, plus the usual mass of ROOKS, JACKDAWS and CARRION CROWS. Two SISKIN went over calling loudly as I finished the circuit of the sheep pasture and paddocks.

I was a bit unwilling to leave Migrant Alley and the Greenhouse area, for fear of missing something else, but I really needed to check the Lakes in case something had dropped down on them, so off I set, noting a large flock of at least 15 LONG TAILED TITS in an isolated Sycamore at the Ashes Lane field, I checked them all for a Yellow Browed warbler, but of course, one was not seen!

Arriving at the lakes, I was later than usual and paid the price, as they were well disturbed by now, however I did get a short view of a KINGFISHER, and took this GREY HERON photo, it was on the less disturbed small lake.
Grey Heron
Grey Heron
I didn't stay long, and was quickly heading back to Migrant Alley for a sky watch, but all the action for the day had been enjoyed already, and very little was seen of note, I was hoping for my first Fieldfare of the Autumn to go through! At least the female KESTREL sat nicely for a photo session, the Male was nearby eating fresh caught vole  :-)


Anonymous said...

Nice find with the Rouzel, Warren. You`re doing well for patch goodies this year, mate.

Alan Pavey said...

Wow, you've been adding some stuff since i last looked at any blogs! Excellent, what's next?

Simon Horne said...

fantastic shots of the kestral

Greenie said...

Warren ,
You certainly made the most of the better weather early on .
Well done reaching your 109 target , anything else now will be a bonus .

Stephen Mills said...

Nice one with the Ring Ouzel, Warren. You're certainly on a roll at the moment.

Jason K said...

Nice one on the Rouzel Warren...a much deserved patch bird!