Tuesday, 20 May 2014

It was cooler and cloudier today with just a few sunny spells, but pleasant enough to be out and about.

Another 5 hour patch walk was had, which produced a tally of 47 species, about average for mid May. It now looks likely all the summer migrants that breed on my patch have arrived, so attention is switched more to finding successful breeding evidence, and today I found a couple more species to add to this years list, the first was the MANDARIN DUCK, a female was escorting 10 new ducklings around the pools of water in the Wet Woods, this is the fourth consecutive year they have bred there. The second was a species that has not bred on my patch in the previous 12 years, yes, at last, the MUTE SWANS have have successfully bred on my patch, only one cygnet seems to have been hatched out, but a most welcome sight it was.
Mute Swan and Cygnet
They stayed far out on the pond, but I got the record shots  :-)
Whist watching the Swans I heard, then saw, a SPOTTED FLYCATCHER, it sat at the top of a silver birch tree in an adjacent large garden, i've never seen this species on this part of my patch before, lets hope it stays around.

A few more highlights from earlier in the visit were, a SPARROWHAWK which flashed through the Greenhouse Grounds, where a LITTLE OWL was sat up on the guttering of the greenhouse again, another was seen in the Greenhouse Copse, that may well of been a recently fledged bird, but it was very dark in there, and it got flushed from perch to perch by an irate SONGTHRUSH ! The female KESTREL was perched up near the nest box, but that was the only other raptor seen today.

Out of the summer birds that have set up territories here, those being SWALLOW, CHIFFCHAFF, BLACKCAP, LESSER WHITETHROAT, COMMON WHITETHROAT and possibly the Spotted Flycatcher, I have yet to find any fledged young for, but hopefully it shouldn't be long now before the first Chiffchaff and Blackcap fledglings are found  :-)
I found both male and female Four Spotted Chasers in the Scrubby Woods
These images are of the male, which proved more co-operative for the camera
Although the light was fading fast by now as cloud cover encroached
Four Spotted Chaser


Marianne said...

The male being more cooperative than the female? That doesn't sound right :) Great shots. The lone little cygnet must stand a good chance of survival with two parents focusing all their attention on keeping it safe, though it might end up being a bit spoilt :)

Warren Baker said...

Being a male, it was probably a case of ''I cant be arsed to fly off'' :-)

Marc Heath said...

Nice set Warren, still waiting for my first 4 spot.

Gravel Pit Birder said...

loving the dragon and damsel pics...dont seem to have caught up with many here, possibly not looking hard enough?!
as for the daft dogs and even dafter owners....well...there seems little escape from them....!