Wednesday, 5 August 2015

A cloudy start to the day gave way to some sunny spells by 09:00hrs, but it clouded over again by midday, when some very light showers fell, at least the wind has dropped a bit!

Yesterday I bemoaned the fact that considering it was August, nothing seemed to be moving yet, well this morning that had changed! After an initial, quiet walk around the paddocks and sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, I took up my sky watching seat there, and had the excitement of seeing a year tick GREEN SANDPIPER (95, 53) fly over, it even gave a short bust of its ''wit'' ''wit'' ''wit'' call as it went, very nice, this only the seventh year from the fourteen years of study, that I have recorded this species here.

My skywatch went on to produce a couple of species for the months list too, with flyovers from CORMORANT (54) and LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL (55), other notables were BLACK HEADED and HERRING GULL, GREY HERON, a skein of 27 CANADA GEESE, a BUZZARD, a SPARROWHAWK and the KESTREL young from the Greenhouse Grounds.

Once the sun was out, I decided to visit the Scrubby Woods, for some Dragonfly hunting, but first had a look around the fruiting Elders and Blackberry bushes there. I saw that there were plenty of BLACKCAPS about, lots of them immatures, also at least 2 BULLFINCH families were seen, but I got what I was really looking for in the end, at last, a GARDEN WARBLER (96,56) for the year list! This once regular breeder here, has now become so scarce that it is now only recorded as an Autumn passage migrant, with just one spring record in the last 5 years (Apr 2012).

Todays additions to the 2015 list, gives me hope of reaching 100 species for the year, but there are a few difficult species (for here!) I will need to find first, like Redstart, Sedge Warbler and Reed Warbler, they only get glimpsed once or twice during any one year - if i'm lucky! As for reaching my target of 109, which is the mean average tally for the previous 5 years, I think I have little chance  :-(

On the dragonfly hunt, I got very lucky again, after finding that obliging male Southern Hawker yesterday, I found an even more obliging female one today, of course I filled my boots with shots, here's a few I liked  :-)

This is the first perch I found it on, and took a distant shot in case it flew off, never to be seen again.

It did indeed fly off, but alighted just a few feet away, in a better place for me.

It was so obliging, I was able to move round to get an angle to remove that annoying white stick in the background seen in the previous photo  ;-)


Pete Woodruff said...

Excellent Green Sandpiper record Warren....'wit' 'wit' wit' and the Garden Warbler too, not heard let alone seen one this year, and I think time will have run out for me now.

Marc Heath said...

Great set of detailed photos Warren. You are doing well with these hawkers.

Johnnykinson said...

You do excel with your Dragon images Warren. It's been pretty poor up here weather wise for Dragons and i've just about given up on them for this year. All my planned trips have been cancelled.

Noushka said...

What a great series of pictures you took of both male and female!!
Again congratulations :)