Friday 13 April 2012

The dastardly fog was back with a vengeance this morning, that mixed with the overnight frost still on the floor, made for a very different visit to the past few days. I only spent 90 mins out from 06:30hrs, then came home for some breakfast while I waited for the fog to clear. In that time I had walked the Greenhouse Complex, Migrant Alley and the College Grounds, but only recorded 26 species, with very few of those singing, one that did sing though was a passage WILLOW WARBLER, which I got some fleeting glimpses of.

Around 10:00hrs, the fog begin to lift into high cloud, so I finished off the circuit of my patch, it was cold, damp and miserable right up until mid-day, when the sun finally came through, far to late to find any of those passage migrants. Most bird activity was confined to the Scrubby Woods, where the TAWNY OWL hooted on three separate occasions, and the song from the recently arrived BLACKCAPS and CHIFFCHAFFS were the most audible, a COAL TIT and a NUTHATCH were heard, they were not recorded yesterday, and two pairs of BULLFINCH fed together high in an Ash tree. The ''yaffle'' of GREEN WOODPECKERS and the drumming of GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS echoed throughout the damp air, with the more delicate high pitch song of the GOLDCREST finding it's way to me from nearby. I again watched two TREECREEPERS collecting nesting material, getting another photo of one, and whilst doing so a SWALLOW stitched its way through the emerging tree canopy.

With the cloud breaking and the sun starting to warm things up, I made my way over to my sky watching seat at Migrant Alley, startling two BUZZARDS from a large Oak tree as I crossed the Tree Nursery. My sky watch wasn't that productive today, but it felt nice sitting in the sunshine!  The MEADOW PIPIT passage was on again today, after none being seen yesterday, a group of  5, and 4 were seen, plus four groups of 3 and two sets of 2, as well as a few singles heard but not seen. The KESTRELS were up on the Greenhouses behind me, and were observed mating  :-) Three more Buzzards circled, and 5 noisy HERRING GULLS went high over, plus another Swallow flew around over the Greenhouse Complex.

In all 48 species were noted, so it wasn't too bad a visit, nothing new for the month or year though. I did have a later visit this afternoon, where I again saw the two Kestrels displaying, with two Buzzards and two SPARROWHAWKS not long after, I also got a photo of an Orange Tip butterfly, and my first Speckled Wood butterfly for the year, 6 days later than last years first date  :-)
Orange Tip
Speckled Wood


ShySongbird said...

The Kestrels sound promising and I forgot to say yesterday that the Kingfisher does also.

It's lovely to see more flutter photos appearing on blogs. A Speckled Wood here too today :-) Lovely photos as always Warren.

Pete Woodruff said...

Still plodding along with your determined style Warren. The Treecreeper is brilliant and the photography just gets better and better.

Marc Heath said...

Too much fog and it ruins your day but I do like a murky morning like today as long as I can see well. Hope you find something over the weekend.

Anonymous said...

From your previous posts, it looks like you`ve had a great week, Warren.
Think i`ve some making up to do.

Jason K said...

Not had a patch Orange Tip or Speckled Wood as yet this year...although I have seen both elsewhere.

I tell you what though...the Spring migration period is just starting to kick off now big time!