Friday 20 May 2011

The walk into work this morning actually produced something of note, the first time in weeks :-) A CUCKOO that I watched fly into the Tree Nursery, turned out to be a female, it's bubbling call was heard shortly after, also flyovers by 5 BLACK HEADED GULL and a SPARROWHAWK, the B H Gulls were only the second record of this species this month.

The afternoon was another of those quiet May days, I was out for two hours, and for most of that the sun shone intermittently through scattered cloud, but the wind picked up again, making photography difficult.

The usual trip to the lake and Scrubby Woods was made, mainly to try and find some more confirmation of breeding bird species, but today I drew a blank, I know there must be Chaffinch young out there, I just cant find them :-) Anyway whilst roaming the woods, one or two CHIFFCHAFF called, as did one or two BLACKCAP, but the most prolific singing was being done by the TURTLE DOVES, at least 3 sang all the time I was there. I noted SWALLOWS and SWIFT above me as I looked for raptors, but not a single House martin was seen, where are they all this year ?

I checked up on the COLLARED DOVES nest, where one possibly two chicks are now looking well grown, its hard to see into the dense hawthorn to see properly, WRENS and BULLFINCH were seen carrying food, so I should be on the lookout for their offspring soon, and the first WOODPIGEON young wont be far away now, their nests are everywhere in the woods.

Before leaving, I checked the lakes where nothing exciting was seen, 3 MOORHEN, 3 MALLARD, 6 CANADA GEESE and 1 COOT were as expected, but the GREY HERON that was fishing here provided something different to look at :-) Whilst watching it I noticed it was barely up to its knees in the water, such is the shallowness of the lake now, we need some rain desperately!

I had a quick look around the Tree Nursery on the way home, and saw the KESTREL above it, and a look for butterflies only came up with the Common Blue and Brown Argus again, no Skippers as yet. Along the boundary hedgerow, both White legged and Common Blue Damselflies were found, as well as a Broad Bodied Chaser.

Hopefully an early start tomorrow for my full patch walk will come up with something for the months list, or maybe the year list if i'm really fortunate :-)

Above and below, White Legged Damselfly

Below is a Broad Bodied Chaser

Lastly, the Heron, which stayed as far away from me as it could ( can you blame it!) However you can see how shallow the lake is.


ShySongbird said...

You're so right Warren, we really do desperately need rain now. I love the dry weather but it's getting silly now and so unusual this early in the year!

I still haven't heard a Cuckoo this time, they used to be such a common sound around here.

That's a great close-up of the damsel!

Warren Baker said...

We will get the rain eventually, it all averages out in the end, trouble is we'll get a deluge in August!

Greenie said...

Warren ,
You must have caught the same wind as here .
Walking over the Common this afternoon , everything was crunching under foot , just like after a long dry Summer .
Shysongbird is right , it is getting desperate now .

Phil said...

How nice to have a trio of Turtle Doves on your patch Waren. Haven't seen one yet and not likely to up here.

Chris said...

Cool sighting once again Warren and the heron is very nice. I did no tell you but we got a bee-eater lost in the North but it is snowing there, he is probably dead by now :-(

Marc Heath said...

Nice shots Warren, I'm on the hunt tomorrow for Small Blue, weather permitting.

Anonymous said...

We`re also having unseasonal winds, Warren. Cold at that, as well.

Good luck for the weekend.

Jason K said...

'Bubbling' female Cuckoo on your patch...nice one Warren!

Paul said...

Hi Warren, some nice shots there, it seems everyone can find Dragonflies on their patch. At Clare park lake, all i have seen is 3 damselflies to date, but no dragonflies at all.