Monday, 20 October 2014


October is racing by but at least it has yielded two new ticks for the year.Nothing unusual has turned up but on the 9th the Canada Goose numbers peaked at 152 with the single Greylag tagging along.
The 11th produced my first Little Grebe(103) of the year although Glyn had seen one in the spring. The next day Lesser Spotted Woodpecker for some time was seen behind the boat house. Of note there were 10 Lesser Black-backed Gulls over and two Grey Wagtails on the stream.
The 13th saw forty House Martins going over south(what I thought would be my last) but four were seen the on the 15th with five Swallows.
On the 17th I had the day off work to catch up on some decorating but managed to get a quick walk in before I started, which tuned out to be very enjoyable.
The field at Kirkins held plenty of birds with 60 Linnets, 15 Pied Wagtails,5 Skylarks and rather surprisingly a Wheatear. This is my first October record.Whilst watching it charging around the field I had my first Brambling of the autumn.
Down at the lake things got even better when as I was walking alond the orchard track I heard the humming of wings a was delighted to see a Mute Swan(104) take off from the lake and fly off north.At the southern end of the lake there were two Water Rails and 3 Chiffchaffs and I also had my first Lesser Redpoll calling as it flew over.It's amazing how much pleasure we can get form seeing the commonest of species.

Monday, 6 October 2014

September ended with lots of Canada Geese visiting the lake and nearby stubble with no fewer than 131 on the 29th plus 5 Greylags with them.Earlier in the day Glyn had counted 158 them! That afternoon there were also six Chiffchaffs,3 Swallows and 2 Grey Wagtails when I visited after work.
It is now dark in the morning when I go to work but that hasn't detered me from dropping in on my way.
Doing this has enlightened me to the amount of Tawny Owls around with three heard calling together on thw 3rd October and a Little Owl as well.
In the late afternoon when I popped in I was delighted to find four Wigeon(3 drakes and a duck) on the lake plus six Mandarins, two Kingfishers, eight Chiffchaffs, three Goldcrests and a Mistle Thrush singing.
I stopped at the field at Kirkins on my way up the hill and found two male Stonechats on the fence.
Distant Stonechat
I managed a walk on Saturday morning. There were lots of Chiffchaffs about with at least ten in the derelict orchard behind Tucks Cottages on Maidstone Road and twenty more as I walked around the edge of Kirkins in the hedgerow. I found the two Stonechats in the bottom of the field.
At the lake there were another half dozen Chiffchaffs and nineteen Skylarks over but the water was very quiet with just thirty eight Canadas of note and two Water Rails calling from opposite corners of the lake.
Three Swallows also passed over head. 
Sunday I had to work so didn't manage a walk in the morning but we had a walk in the afternoon. Not much was seen but there were three species of Dragonfly around the lake with Emperor, Migrant Hawker and Common Darter seen.
Common Darter
Four Buzzards and a Swallow were over the house.