Friday, 18 September 2015

A view south across the poly tunnels at the Greenhouse grounds at 08:00hrs.
After yesterdays sunshine, as you can see, today dawned much cloudier, with very heavy, showery rain soon developing across the area.

I spent more time sheltering from the rain than I did finding birds early this morning, but it was still an interesting visit none the less. It soon became clear there was a very large movement of SWALLOWS and HOUSE MARTINS, with many hundreds, probably thousands moving through, the sky was constantly filled with them throughout my 4 hour visit this morning, I made sure I picked out at least one SAND MARTIN, so as to get a probable last date for this species, but who knows!

There were also SISKINS flying over, as well as a few MEADOW PIPITS and a couple of GREY WAGTAILS. A local movement of CANADA GEESE involved 3 skeins totaling 64 birds in all. A HOBBY was seen chasing the Swallows, one of four raptor species seen today, the others being SPARROWHAWK, KESTREL and BUZZARD, of which 5 were seen up together during a sunny spell late in the visit.

On the ground, there were at least 5 CHIFFCHAFF and 2 BLACKCAP at the Greenhouse Grounds, along with a party of 8 LINNETS, these were joined by 5 SONGTHRUSHES, no doubt migrant birds just arrived.

It was good to find a WHEATEAR on the paddock fence line at Migrant Alley, it posed for a photo, but the light was very poor, producing some soft images, none the less, here they are  :-)

Wheatear, just the 3rd record this month

During a spell of heavy rain, two LESSER BLACK BACKED GULLS dropped into the sheep pasture. Soon after that, the dreaded hedgerow destroyers arrived, so rather than get wound up watching them flail whats left of the over grazed hedges, I went over to take a look at the lakes, which proved a waste of time really, just MALLARDS, MOORHENS and a GREY HERON were on them, plus I got a soaking as I walked over  :-(

As there have been few images on the last couple of posts, here's a couple from yesterdays Bough Beech trip, I'll save a few for later though  :-)


Distant Snipe.


Derek Faulkner said...

In an hour's warm sunshine on the Swale NNR early this morning we had the same mass movement of hirundines as you experienced. House Martins easily made up the majority of the numbers with at least 800 while I was there, followed by c.500 Sand Martins and 400 Swallows and they were still coming when I left as torrential rain moved in.

Warren Baker said...

Seems they moved through on a broad front today.