A three hour visit today produced very little indeed birdwise, the early circuit of the paddocks and pasture at Migrant Alley being particularly quiet, one paddock had a flock of 50-60 STARLINGS on it, while the sheep pasture was full of ROOKS and JACKDAWS, plus the odd CARRION CROW among them. A 40 minute sky watch from my seat yielded flyovers from 2, 4 and 1 HERRING GULLS, 1 BLACK HEADED GULL, 2 GREY HERONS and my first HOUSE MARTIN (58) of the month, oh how this once common bird has declined here!
The two young KESTRELS were sat up on one of the Greenhouses, where the last of the scrub and brambles have been removed, along with whatever nested or lived there. There's no excuse for that kind of blatant destruction, but then farmers are a law unto themselves :-(
I made trip over to the lakes, where 24 CANADA GEESE were on the main lake ( including the immature birds) plus 1 GREYLAG GOOSE and 4 MALLARDS, the other two water bodies were home to just a couple of MOORHEN families.
A look through the adjacent Scrubby Woods was a bit better for birdlife, two SONGTHRUSHES sang, as did BLACKCAP, CHIFFCHAFF, GOLDCREST, DUNNOCK, WREN and TREECREEPER. STOCK DOVE, NUTHATCHES and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS called and the calls of BULLFINCH were also heard, but no young have been found for this species this year yet.
As I sat and listened, I caught sight of a large Dragonfly flying over the brambles, I took it to be a Southern Hawker first off, but when I saw it alight in some nettles, my investigations found it to be a fantastic GOLDEN RINGED DRAGONFLY!! My first (and probably last!) record of this Dragonfly that I have recorded here at Pittswood. Where it came from is anyone's guess, as there is certainly no habitat for it's life cycle here. This is my 20th species of Odonata for my patch, what a find!
I was lucky enough to get some decent images of it too :-)
My first Golden Ringed Dragonfly at Pittswood!
The wings look quite fresh
I believe this species of Dragonfly is the longest of all our British species