Saturday, 27 March 2010
Tuesday, 23 March 2010
Saturday, 20 March 2010
A stochastic event interrupted Excel population modelling this afternoon, when a post lunch phone call arrived inviting me to join a friend at Blashford Lakes Reserve for some late afternoon birding in the shelter of the Tern and Goosander hides.
Shortly after arrival at the Tern hide I missed 3 little ringed plover (Charadrius dubius) as they flew in and disappeared one to the south west and two east over the spit towards the gossander hide. Fortunately a single bird was picked up from the goosander hide a little later. 4 (poss 5) of these birds are now on site.
Around 16:30 I spotted a single barn swallow (Hirundo rustica) hawking amongst a small flock of sand martins (Riparia riparia) - the martin flock swelling in size to circa 120 birds over the next half hour.
Other highlights included a raft of goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) in total 33 on Ibsley Water, complete with displaying males, goosander (Merganser merganser) in very small numbers and 2 grey wagtails (Motacilla cinerea) feeding within meters of the Tern hide.
A large flock of m'ipits was misidentified as 20 water pipits in the Tern hide log book.
Having not heard a song thrush at morning song since Saturday 6th March, my week day wake ups have been silent bar for the rattle of house sparrows and blue tits.
This morning I was delighted to be woken up by a blackbird in full voice. Blackbird remains my favourite song bird and not unentirely because it has, until this years song thrush interlude, been the only bird(s) whose song has graced the back gardens of this central city terrace. And what grace.
Numbers of birds feeding and active around the gardens have dropped noticeably over this last week. Thrush numbers in particular - the song thrush appear to have completely gone, and blackbirds were down to two (poss three) males only by Thursday. I haven't noticed a fem blackbird since the start of the week.
Blue tit and great tit are still present, and the house sparrows are getting noisier and increasing in their activity, robin has only been noted on occasion. Wood pigeon hoover the seed mix.
With loud rumours of swallow in the west of the country
and wheatear on the coast; It will be good to get out and get some fresh air and proper spring birding action, when these end of term assignment deadlines are met.
Tuesday, 16 March 2010
Sunday, 7 March 2010
Saturday, 6 March 2010
Folklore regarding The Devil's Jumps can be found under discussion at: http://www.themodernantiquarian.com/site/3089/#folklore
Incidental birding highlights included 2 x red kite Milvus milvus, 1 x raven Corvus corax, 3 x buzzard Buteo buteo and a flock of circa 100 fieldfare Turdus pilaris.