Tuesday, 6 May 2014

After an unpromising start to the day, with low cloud and spits of rain on a moderate SW wind, things slowly brighten and improved markedly as the day progressed.

In the dreary conditions first thing, my walk around the Greenhouse Grounds, Migrant Alley, the Pub Field and across the Ashes Lane Field, yielded a few bits and pieces. A SPARROWHAWK was up hunting at the Greenhouse Grounds, Migrant Alley had a singing LESSER WHITETHROAT at the Wooded Headland, probably the one that has been heard singing from the Greenhouse Grounds last week. The Pub Field had 4 STOCK DOVES feeding on it, a LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL flying low over it, then my first YELLOWHAMMER (59) of May called as it flew through.

I checked the old shack in the Ashes Lane Field, and was pleased to see a LITTLE OWL (60) sitting on it, while the adjacent weedy field had the SKYLARK pair chasing about over it, and higher up still, a BUZZARD was soaring.

I headed off home to shed my coat and wooly hat, as the morning was warming up a bit, and as I was putting my boots back on to leave again, this Sparrowhawk flew into the garden, the first for at least 6 weeks.
Unfortunately I had to shoot through the double glazing  :-(
The light was poor too, but at least it's a good record of the event
Looks like an immature bird
After that little bit of excitement I headed off over to the Wet Woods, Scrubby Woods and Lakes. I heard a TREECREEPER singing in the Wet Woods, and watched a NUTHATCH collecting food for its nestlings, a GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER was next to its nest too.

With nothing changing on the lakes, just 3 MANDARIN drakes were of note there, I decided to spend some time in the Scrubby Woods, but in the 90 minutes I was there I didn't hear either Turtle Dove nor Garden Warbler, will they arrive hear this spring ? The TAWNY OWL called repeatedly, and 3 more SWIFTS were seen up in the now blue sky, my first HOUSE MARTINS (61) for the month were also seen spinning around in the blue  :-)

With the bird life going quiet, I got down to trying to find some Damsels and Dragons, and to my surprise I found some! The first Beautiful Demoiselles and the first Azure Damsels of the year turned up, here's a few Demoiselle images, i'll post the Azures on tomorrows post  :-)
I reckon this is an immature female
An immature male was also about, but didn't pose for me
Beautiful Demoiselle - lovely creatures!


Marc Heath said...

Very nice Warren, I had my first Banded Demoiselles tonight too. Photos later. I better had pencil the beginning of June in I reckon for a visit then.

Warren Baker said...

I'm going to wales on June 7th for two weeks. :-)

Wilma said...

Wonderful photos today. That sparrow hawk is quite handsome. I am totally jealous of your damsel photos! How do you ever get so close and view them from so many angles without them flying away?

Jason K said...

Through the double glazing or not Warren...those Sprawk shots are a really good mate!

Warren Baker said...

I get stung, scratched and very frustrated sometimes, but it's all about persevering :-)