Thursday, 5 February 2009

This afternoon I went straight over to Migrant Alley, it didn't seem worth the effort to visit the lake, it being frozen, or the wet woods, as little could be expected there that would be new for the year list. So it was a 90 minute sit on the horse jump, overlooking the maize stubbles, sheep pasture and horse paddocks. Even as I sat down it was evident that there were thousands of birds about, as I scanned the now rapidly thawing, sodden fields, I saw at least 1500 FIELDFARE, 500 REDWING and probably over 1500 STARLINGS, these figures are best estimates, and I would say they are conservative ones. They were disturbed by a couple of dog walkers twice, but each time the flocks returned in various sizes, ranging from hundreds, to just a dozen, it was really quite something to see.
Other birds noted during the damp, misty, dull, claggy, dismal, cold and all the other wintery adjectives, were 36 LAPWING, about a dozen LINNET, a single MEADOW PIPIT, 4 PIED WAGTAIL and a YELLOWHAMMER, which seemed to glow in the gloom. Two SKYLARKS flew west, a species needed for the months list, and a LITTLE OWL called from the small wood adjacent to the Greenhouses. The hedgerow separating the Greenhouses and stubbles, held plenty of DUNNOCK, BLACKBIRDS, ROBINS and at the hedgerows end, some alders hosted a small flock of SISKIN and GOLDFINCH, around 20 birds in all. About 15:30 the fog rolled in and curtailed the visit so I headed home, as I passed by the Raspberry canes I saw at least 3 BULLFINCH feeding on the old fruit seeds.

One more bird to add to the february garden bird count was a Green Woodpecker, feeding out on the grass field to the front of my house.

Above is a small section of the mixed winter thrushes and starlings, this flock extended for fifty meters either side of what's in the photo, and there's more birds are still on the floor!
Above is a photo of the view northwest of my patch, you can see the fog advancing on me!


Phil and Mandy said...

Nice photo of the fog rolling in mate.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
It might have been all those adjectives you said , but at least you could see something this afternoon . We had rain till lunch , then fog and drizzle till dark .
Only bright spot , have had the male Brambling last two mornings .

Anonymous said...

You`re doing well with the winter Thrushes, Warren. Still only a handful up here.

Adam said...

Hi Warren, may be some of our winter thrushes have headed your way, there was a noticeable drop in numbers in East Malling today....and the Waxwings were a no show....keep checking, they may have followed those Fieldfares!