Friday, 28 June 2013

Get out birding in July

Just because it's summer and grass needs mowing, or you feel like a bar-b-q, don't spend all your time away from DP, past July's have produced some pretty good birds;

1st 2002 : Goshawk over Lavell's car park
2nd & 3rd 2004 : Gannet BSL
3rd 1995 : Willow Tit Lavell's
7th 1986 : 1 Curlew over
7th 2008 : 1 Black-tailed Godwit Lavell's
8th 1983 : Little Stint Lavell's
8th 2007 : 8 Little Egret LFGP
8th to 12th 2010 : Up to 11 Little Egret LFGP
12th 1981 : 1 Corn Bunting flew over
12th 1998 : 1 Wood Sandpiper Lavell's
13th 1984 : Wood Warbler
13th 1985 : Wood Sandpiper Lavell's
13th to 15th 2011 : 1 Black-tailed Godwit Sandford
14th to 17th 1999 : Black-necked Grebe BSL
14th 2006 : 1 Black-tailed Godwit Sandford
15th 1982 : 6 Corn Bunting Mungell's Pond
17th 1983 : Arctic Skua over
17th 1989 : Common Scoter WSL
17th 1991 : 6 Crossbill over
17th 2010 : 2 Black-tailed Godwit LFGP
18th 1983 : 1 Little Tern Sandford
18th 1983 : 4 Whimbrel over
20th 2006 : 1 Whimbrel over
23rd to 25th 2000: 5 Garganey Lavell's
25th 2010 : Red Crested Pochard 2010 LFGP
25th to 28th 1981 : 2 Wood Sandpiper 1981 Lavell's
28th onwards 1980 : Red Crested Pochard BSL
29th onwards 1983 : First ever Bittern WSL
30th & 31st 2000 : 1 Wood Sandpiper Lavell's

Not forgetting plenty of Green & Common Sandpiper and Greenshank usually start to come thru

Call me if you find a Little Stint, or Arctic Skua in particular!

Happy birding!

Egg with no nest

At LFGP this morning there was 2 Oystercatcher, 2 Little-ringed Plover, 2 Redshank, 20-30 Lapwing, the usual BH Gulls and Common Terns + chicks, 5-10 House Martin and even a Sand Martin graced our airspace, but no sign of any other hoped for waders.

A Great Crested Grebe was sat on one of the nearby mini rafts and we weren't paying that much attention until it slid off, revealing a lone egg, but not a single piece of nest material. One might be inclined to believe that attempts to nest build were undermined by various species like Coot and Black-headed Gulls stealing their nest material, so they decided they could manage without?

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Pleasant evening, lovely morning

I got out for a dusk walk last night on Sandford it was hard to say if the Oystercatcher was sitting, but I doubt it. On Lavell's, all pretty quiet.

On LFGP, lots of BH Gull and Common Tern feeding chicks, 38 Lapwing, a few Herring and LBB Gulls, but little else, so I decided to walk North along the Loddon and saw 4 Oystercatcher fly in to the North end of Lodge Wood Lake, scoping them revealed a fully fledged family, posing for just long enough to catch them together, these are no doubt the BBOWT pit birds, so good to know they had another successful year.

6 more Lapwing flew towards LFGP and a brief falcon might have been Hobby, but that was about it.

This morning I was out at 05:20 to help a student carry out more of her degree survey studies and we watched a Barn Owl quartering the car park field for a few moments, my first sighting at Lavell's since 1st March.

Onwards along the golf course strip, but just before a Nuthatch called at the East end of the car park field, new for the month, then a juvenile Grey Wagtail with 3-5 Pied Wagtail on the beach.

Not much else to report until the walk back, when I picked up Coal Tit call, quickly getting onto a bird at the top of a willow, revealing a juvenile, so must have bred nearby...another month tick for the park. These two months ticks brought the total up to 85, the = 2nd highest shared with 2006. We are missing records of Lesser Whitethroat, Mistle Thrush, Green Sandpiper and Linnet, all are possible.

Lastly the Oystercatcher was feeding on the golf course and offered another quick photo opportunity;

Friday, 21 June 2013

Longest day

A quick march around all the main lakes from 08:30, heard Oystercatcher on Sandford, but couldn't see one, no sign of any Gadwall, so they are either hiding, or lost all their young. Plenty of Common Tern and Black-headed Gull chicks here, Tufted Ducks looking interested, plus Grey Wagtail over.

At Lavell's 2 Ring-necked Parakeet over, no sign of Little Grebes and it is evident they lost all their young, which is a really big shame, again several terns and Bh gull chicks.

LFGP had 20-30+ Lapwing, some juveniles, a Little-ringed Plover from who knows where? The pair of eclipse Shoveler, a good number of tern and BH gull chicks, singing Skylark at the back, making 82 species for the month, the third highest in June, unless someone has heard or seen Lesser Whitethroat, Nuthatch, or Coal Tit and any other waders?

On Tern Scrape a doe and her foal wandered around nibbling in the deep Crassula

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Will I ever see my patch again

Tough times right now and earning money is a priority, so I am unable to get to my beloved patch still.

So I will be creating a new side bar hoping to see my excess Birding Worlds from years 2003 to 2007, which had been intended for selling on my mobile twitch cafe bar business, which never got off the ground.

Anyway there are 5 copies of each year, all in immaculate condition, packaged up in individual years. Worth £49.00 for each year, I'll take £15.00 per year, or all 300 magazines for £200.00 if anyone in second hand journals wants them?

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Home to see a nice sunset

Am keen to go and see the Gadwall young on Sandford and Terns on all the lakes, but for now all I can post is my photo from the garden of last nights spectacular sunset, which I only just caught.

Oh yes, one more thing, on this day in 1983 I saw 9 Little Terns fly thru chased off by Common Terns at 07:00, and a month later a single Little Tern on Sandford from 07:20 to 07:30 only......always worth getting up early if you can!

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Harlyn Bay

Saturday morning and a walk along the path above the South cliffs of Harlyn Bay, was pleasant and rather scenic, a Rock Pipit sat for a few moments, in the field behind 40+ Linnet fed in the sprawling yellow flowers. I couldn't decide if portrait or landscape captured the beach view better?Some of the local flowers are vivid pinks. Earlier from the sofa I watched 500-1000 Manx Shearwater go by.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Off patch chill pill

I brought the family down to Cornwall for a long weekend, arriving late afternoon yesteday, I am very pleased with the location and view from our lounge.

Apart from it being a great view, the other excellent benefit is being able to sea watch from the sofa, so far I have had 200+ Manx Shearwater, 30+ Kittiwake, obviously loads of Gannet, 10+ Razorbill, Oystercatchers, a few tern sp and an Arctic Skua a few moments ago......nice and just what I needed! ;0)

Friday, 7 June 2013

Utter contempt for wildlife and nesting birds

As  I walked down the Loddon, I could hear the breaking of branches, then saw the resident gardener and another person pulling at the huge stick pile created last year, showing no regard for wildlife and nesting birds.

But to my horror as I walked back I could see they had decided that was too much hard work and just set alight to it, flames rising 20+ feet into the trees, note the Alder either side which often has Great Spotted Woodpecker and Treecreeper nesting in them.

I am speechless with anger at the contempt for nature and just wish there was a proper law against this mindless action, when they could have done this in February, even March and it probably wouldn't have hurt, but even then maybe Hedgehogs might have been in there.

Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Lovely weather

I watch the Oxon blog all the time and think how lovely it would be to have a flood meadow like Port Meadow, where wader passage is amazing and winter flocks are fab too, or maybe an Otmoor, or a Farmoor, where rarities appear with unfair regularity, even now Otmoor has Bearded Tit and Marsh Harrier.
But we don't have anything like these sites, nor the geography that must have a lot to do with it, so we must be grateful for our humble little patch.

Apart from the later passage of Swifts, Swallows and House Martin, it has gone very quiet and currently not looking like we have Oystercatcher trying again, one piece of great news was successful Little Grebes at Lavell's, which is the fifth attempt in 5 years, 2 definite successful years, 1 possible, 2 failed due to flooding, I was hoping to grab a picture the other late morning, but they were no doubt hiding under the trees, so took scenery shot of Lavell's car park meadow, which looked very nice with swathes of yellow...buttercups?

Off patch about 10 days or so ago, I threw out bread rolls in my garden near dusk and shortly after my wife called me to the kitchen to see our first Mallard in the garden, they go over all the time from Woodford Park at dusk, but this is the first on the deck.