Monday, 31 March 2014

It remained overcast for todays patch visit, with a few spots of rain towards midday, but with little wind it felt quite warm.

I decided to spend the entire morning looking over the Fields and searching the sky for a new migrant species to pass through, as this is where I am most likely to see one! With little wind and a grey sky hardly a sound was heard early on as I passed the Greenhouses, except for the watery song of ROBINS, and the complete opposite to that, the loud blast of the WRENS.  The BLACKBIRD and SONGTHRUSH were heard singing as it got lighter, joined by DUNNOCKS and CHAFFINCH all singing from the Greenhouse Grounds.

I walked the Ashes Lane Field, Pub Field and the sheep pasture and paddocks of Migrant Alley three times, as well as taking a stroll along High House Lane at the western boundary of my patch, but I got little reward for it, best birds seen were the LITTLE OWLS by the old shack in the Ashes lane Field and the female KESTREL hunting over the Pub Field. Single MEADOW PIPITS were seen and heard flying over at times,  but they were the only passage birds noted.

Just half a dozen BLACK HEADED GULLS remain on the sheep pasture, along with the flock of ROOKS, JACKDAWS and CARRION CROWS, a scattering of WOODPIGEONS joined them at times, just 3 STARLINGS, 2 LINNETS and a GREEN WOODPECKER visited the paddocks, while in the Wooded Headland 2 CHIFFCHAFFS sang.

Much of the 5 hour visit was spent watching the sky from my seat at Migrant Alley, hoping for a Swallow or maybe a Sand Martin to fly over, or I might just get lucky with a large raptor, but in the end nothing that exciting showed up, just a few HERRING GULLS, a couple of LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS, a single YELLOWHAMMER and the mention corvids and Woodpigeons, all a bit disappointing, but it is early yet  :-)

So, not adding any new species to the months list, it remained on 69, the joint second best March effort out of 13, not bad really, as quite few winter species didn't show up this year, like Brambling, Snipe and Golden Plover, the Kingfisher left the lakes in late February and a Grey wagtail is normally on the March list, so could of been expected, the potential was there for a record March tally  :-)

The mean average species total for the past 5 March's is 68 so that was passed, and the 13 year March mean of  64 was well surpassed, the combined total for the 13 March months has now reached 92, quite a surprising number of species, it being one better than the combined May list.

Nothing was photographed at all today in the poor light, and with all the Butterflies back in hiding it was a bit of a disappointing last day of March.

These are the last two images left in my ''blog brightening Folder''   :-(


Anonymous said...

Yeah, the weather`s certainly gone to pot, Warren. Dull & gloomy for the most of it, up here too.

Joe said...

Hopefully those migrants start showing up soon. Not sure about where you are but its meant to get sunnier this afternoon so maybe that'll bring some of the migrants in. Cracking starling and chaffinch pictures, the light is great.