Monday, 10 March 2014

This mornings patch visit was again undertaken in some lovely sunny weather, although by mid day cloud had started to roll in, it did at least remained dry though  :-)

My plan today was to briefly visit the lakes, then spend some time around the fields and paddocks at Migrant Alley, where I would do some serious sky watching from my seat there. I had some fortune when walking across the Ashes Lane Field to get to the lakes, when I spied a distant WOODCOCK (61) fly up from the edge of the Wet Woods, its chestnut rump catching the sun just nicely. The lakes were practically deserted though, just the MUTE SWAN and COOT pair, and a couple of CANADA GEESE were present, along with 2 male MALLARD and 4 MOORHEN. Walking back, I saw a pair of MANDARIN DUCK drop into the Wet Woods.

I did a circuit of Migrant Alley, and scanned the fence posts and paddocks for a possible early Wheatear, but failed to see one, however I did hear a singing CHIFFCHAFF performing from an adjacent large garden :-)  I checked the Greenhouse Copse on the way round, and found the LITTLE OWL at his perch, so I took a few snaps today, a TREECREEPER sang from within the copse as I did so  :-)
Little Owl
I reached my seat, where for the next two hours I watched over the fields and paddocks, whilst keeping an eye out overhead. I soon heard the call of a couple of LESSER REDPOLL going over, as well as a SISKIN, but saw neither against the blue sky. REDWING and FIELDFARE also went over in unknown numbers, as they were also only identified by call, they must have been high up! A few Gulls went over, they were easier to spot, with a group of 32 HERRING GULLS being seen, as well as three BLACK HEADED GULLS and a LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL. SKYLARKS and MEADOW PIPITS were heard over the sheep pasture, and a couple of LINNET alighted in the tall hedge behind my seat, as did a YELLOWHAMMER, that only stayed briefly though. The highlight of the extended sky watch was seeing my first LAPWING (69,62) fly over, that was followed by another 20 mins later, cant believe its taken until march to see this species! Raptors were represented by COMMON BUZZARD, of which 4 were seen up together, and a KESTREL that hunted around the adjacent Greenhouse Grounds.

Ending my sky watch, I walked through the Greenhouse Grounds to get home, seeing a pair of BULLFINCH'S and a couple of PIED WAGTAILS on the way, I also stopped to photograph this GOLDCREST, as you can see I took a few images!


Stephen Mills said...

It would be great to have a Lapwing here,Warren.Always few and far between on my patch.
Love the Goldcrest shots!!

Warren Baker said...

I get Lapwing flyover in most months Steve, mostly just odd ones, but in the winter sometimes many hundreds gather on the fields - not this winter though!

Fleetwood Bird Observatory said...

It won't be long before those first summer migrants arrive Warren. I'm hoping for a Wheatear or a Sand Martin in the morning. That'll have put the kiss of death on it now!



Greenie said...

Warren ,
See a Wheatear reported on the coast yesterday .
Not long to wait .