Tuesday, 26 April 2016

With the nights getting shorter I am able to have a quick walk at the lake on my way to work and on 19th I found a Wheatear on the farm track and also a Fieldfare was present.A walk after work produced a Lesser Whitethroat in Kirkins and the Cuckoo was calling loudly.
The lake held a Coot plus the pair of Great-crested Grebes. The Kestrel pair were perched in the old dead oak and one of the local Buzzards circled over Shirrenden wood.
On the 22nd 4 Buzzards were seen plus a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel and the lake now had two Coots on it.
The following day the first Whitethroat(83) of the year was on the Swigs Hole side.
The 23rd was cold when I left home so I wasn't filled with optimism but it turned out to be a good day with another Lesser Whitethroat, 3 Whitethroats, 2 Willow Warblers,5 Chiffchaffs,3 Blackcaps, a flyover Tree Pipit(84) 4 Swallows,a Cuckoo and the first Reed Warbler(85) calling loudly from the corner of the lake.
One of the Swallow pairs

The following day one of theWillow Warblers was still singing from suitable habitat, so I am hoping it may stay.
A walk just into dark had me thrilled to find 2 Nightingales(86) singing.Fantastic!
                                                    The Fieldfare was still around today
This evening a single Siskin came to the garden feeders.

Monday, 18 April 2016

It has taken me till 11th of April to get my first Little Owl(76) of the year on the patch.
The following day I was delighted to find two Wheatears (77) in the old currant field in Furnace Lane which was particularly pleasing as I had been checking this field as I had a feeling something could turn up there!
The 15th turned up the first Cuckoo (78) but it remains the only one so far this spring.
The following day and I was greeted by a Willow Warbler (79) singing in the back garden.
Down at the lake I found a second Willow warbler in the lakeside trees.Unfortunately these delightful little birds no longer breed on the patch due to all the suitable habitat being destroyed.
Chiffchaff numers have increased to five singing males and two females.
One of the female Chiffchaffs
Four House Martins (80) added to the years list as they flew straight through.
That evening I decided to go out just before dark to listen for Nightingales just in case one had turned up. None were found but I did have two Snipe (81) going over just as the sun set.
The follwing morning there was a frost as I left the house so I was surprised to find a Lesser Whitethroat (82) singing at the top of Kirkins and even more surprised to have a second down at the lake.
Five summer migrants were seen on Sunday including the Lesser Whitethroat, Chiffchaff, Swallow, Wllow Warbler and Blackcap.

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

The last week of March produced a few new species for the year list with a single Greylag Goose(70) and three of Tufted Ducks(71) on the 24th, followed the next day by the first Chiffchaff(72) of spring. The same day in the late afternoon as I went to fill up the feeder,down by the lake my second Red Kite drifted over west.
My good fortune continued on 26th with a Red-legged Partridge(73) in the small orchard on Furnace Lane.
All of a sudden the winter thrushes have cleared out with two Redwings seen on the 31st which will possibly be the last this spring.The same day there were 4 Chiffchaffs around the patch.
The first Blackcap(74) was found singing intermittently behind the pumping station.Chiffchaffs numbered five and a single Fieldfare was at the lake.The lake held a pair of Teal,4 Great-crested Grebes,2 Kingfishers and a pair of Mandarins.
Dropping in to the lake on my way home from work,on 5th, produced two Swallows(75) going west as well as 3 Fieldfares, a Marsh Tit and a flock of about 110 Linnets, the singing Blackcap and 4 Chiffchaffs.
Driving through Castle hill that afternoon I also saw another Red Kite going over.
On a walk after work this afternnoon I saw 6 Buzzards circling over the orchard plus a Kestrel and amazingly my third Red Kite of the year on the patch.
In the garden the Siskins are still coming to the feeders with the occasional Lesser Redpoll.
Siskin in the garden
Singing Linnet