Another very mild morning for late Autumn, with the odd bright spell appearing, but a strong SW wind made it feel a bit chilly at times.
I made a 3 and a half hour full patch walk, commencing at 07:00hrs and after a pre dawn downpour. It was an extremely quiet visit, with just 33 species seen, I cant remember such a poor species list on a November day, it probably reflects the amount of habitat that has been destroyed, especially around the fields, farmland and Greenhouse Grounds.
The best of what was seen occurred at the Scrubby Woods, a place that nature is allowed to thrive, in all its forms, here I watched a COMMON BUZZARD glide in and alight in a still well canopied oak tree, also GOLDCREST, BULLFINCH and COAL TIT were seen, along with plenty of the more common WRENS, DUNNOCKS, ROBINS, BLACKBIRDS, CHAFFINCHES, BLUE TITS, and GREAT TITS, plus single SONGTHRUSH, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER and GREEN WOODPECKER.
The lakes were only home to the MUTE SWAN family, 4 MALLARDS and around 8 MOORHEN, as well as a welcome glimpse of the KINGFISHER.
A pityful walk around the Ashes lane Fields, Pub Field, Migrant Alley and the Greenhouse Grounds only produced a pair of MEADOW PIPITS as well as the ever present ROOKS, JACKDAWS, STARLINGS and WOODPIGEONS, with flyovers from HERRING GULL, BLACK HEADED GULL, CORMORANT and SPARROWHAWK. The KESTREL pair hunted around the Greenhouse Grounds.
Undoubtedly the mild weather plays it's part in the lack of bird species being seen here at the moment, but I put the habitat loss at the heart of the problem, a problem that is not just confined to my little patch.
Consider this passage of text that I was reading last evening, written by Richard Jefferies, he was a naturalist back in the mid 1800's, he could see the writing on the wall.................
'' Do not clear away the fallen branches and brown leaves, sweeping the plantation as if it were the floor of a ballroom, for it is just the tangle and wildness that brings the birds, and they like the disarray''