Early this morning I set off out on another full patch walk, in which the 5 hour trek gave me a very good tally of 49 species, with just about every bird species that resides on my patch being found, just the Mistlethrush, Little Owl and Tawny Owl evaded detection :-)
A walk around the sheep pasture and paddocks of Migrant Alley first off, gave me all the expected species, with ROOK, JACKDAW, CARRION CROW, a flock of 30 STARLINGS, plus the less expected sighting of 6 GREYLAG GEESE. SWALLOWS zipped low around the sheep, and LINNETS fed on the paddocks, early flyovers from GREY HERON and HERRING GULL were noted.
Greylag Geese at Migrant Alley
I checked the Greenhouse Grounds, looking in on the WHITETHROAT nest, the young are still in the nest, but the KESTRELS were out of theirs and were perched on a nearby roof. A few minutes later I was walking along High House Lane, listening to the SKYLARK singing, when I also heard the song from a YELLOWHAMMER (63) the first one this month, further along the lane a mixed group of CHAFFINCH, GOLDFINCH and a few more Linnets were seen.
Walking through the Small Holding, then on through the Wet Woods, the likes of NUTHATCH, TREECREEPER, GREEN WOODPECKER, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, STOCK DOVE, GREENFINCH, PIED WAGTAIL and SONGTHRUSH were found, while the Scrubby Woods, gave me the remaining woodland species, like GOLDCREST, COAL TIT, LONG TAILED TIT, CHIFFCHAFF, BLACKCAP, BULLFINCH and JAY, plus the real bonus of hearing the TURTLE DOVE singing, a real pleasure in the warm sunshine :-)
On the lakes just the CANADA GEESE, a few MALLARDS and a pair of MOORHENS with 7 newly hatched young in tow were seen, but further careful scanning revealed the female MANDARIN DUCK with her two young, good to see those surviving.
Out onto the Ashes Lane Fields I picked up my first BUZZARD of the morning, as well as a flyover SPARROWHAWK, then headed off home for a drink and snack.
I was back out an hour later, mostly photographing Butterflies at the Greenhouse grounds and it was whilst doing so I heard the Kestrel calling above me, I looked up to see it mobbing a Buzzard, then a few seconds later these were joined by a RED KITE, then a Sparrowhawk! All four circled up higher and disappeared into the blue, the Red Kite brought the days bird list to 50 - very apt! :-)
A few Butterfly images.....................
Small Skippers Mating