My early circuit of Migrant Alley was only notable for the number of MEADOW PIPITS counted there, in all there were 46 lined up on a fence line, but only one allowed a distant photo!
Walking back through the Greenhouse Grounds, the two GREY WAGTAILS that have frequented here all month were back again, I wonder how long they will be around for ?
The edge of the Maize crop was walked, but only 3 CHIFFCHAFFS were found of note, so I made my way over to the Lakes and Scrubby Woods, there wasn't much to excite here, just the usual species on the lakes, a MISTLETHRUSH flew over whilst I was there, nice to see one now and again! Around 40 GOLDFINCHES were seen in the Scrubby Woods, but just one BULLFINCH, a superb male, it was the only one of the scarcer woodland species recorded today. Just as I was leaving, 6 SWALLOWS flew over.
I was heading back to my seat at Migrant Alley for a sky watch, when I saw that the Maize in the Pub Field was being cut, so I made my way across to there instead, you never know what might be flushed out when they harvest it! I checked the drainage ditch fence line at the Ashes Lane Field as I went, but I wasn't really expecting what I found..............there, on the wire, was my first STONECHAT (104,75) of the year, fantastic! :-)
It didn't allow close approach, so I just took a couple of distant shots, I didn't want to upset it, hopefully it may stay for a few days :-)
What a brilliant little bird, a great find on my patch!
I spent the next three hours watching the Maize crop being harvested, I was hopeful of a Sedge or Reed Warbler being flushed out, as has happened in past years, but this year it was a bit disappointing, I only saw 5 -10 Chiffchaffs, loads of DUNNOCKS, a dozen CHAFFINCH, at least another 15 Meadow Pipits, 8 BLACKBIRDS, 1 SONGTHRUSH and 2 PHEASANTS. I also only saw two Foxes this year, normally there are five or six to be seen. As I watched the cropping taking place, I had my eye on the sky, seeing 3 BUZZARDS, 2 SPARROWHAWKS and a KESTREL, as well as a CORMORANT, a few more Swallows and a party of 13 HOUSE MARTINS. A flock of 9 JAYS was interesting to see, maybe it will be another invasion year for this species! As the field was cut, a tractor was tilling the stubbles left on the field, attracting 40-50 HERRING GULLS, 14 BLACK HEADED GULLS and a lone LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL.