Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Nsl WEBS count walk

Date: 12/12/2017
Location: Newton St Loe
Weather: Blue skies to start, Frosty then overcast  and grey
Species Highlights: 
Goosander, Teal, Fieldfare, Redwing, Greenfinch, Song Thrush.
Started off as the norm through Bath Mill with plenty of Robin and Blackbirds, up onto dog track and a single Roe Deer stood hiding behind this twig!

At Apple trees on dog walk at least 10 Blackbirds mixed with Redwing feeding on the few fallen apples. Up onto fields and a mixed flock of Meadow Pipit 30+ birds with Linnet around 20, some landing distantly, the backdrop is Lansdown Crescent.

At the Globe lookout a large group of Wood Pigeon took to the skies around 150+ with 2 Yellowhammer and assorted Tits also.
On into village and in house opposite shop Redwing feeding on berries with Fieldfare over.

Some even let me get a few pictures!

So much choice for this Redwing, but overall not many berries around patch, especially Yew berries, very few about. Anyone else noticed this ?

Fieldfare were either hiding behind branches or into the now fading sun.

Or in the dark in Church yard Orchard, almost the same shot as last week.

But plenty of Turdus around today numbers were: 
40 Fieldfare
 30 Redwing
 7 Song Thrush 
3 Mistle Thrush
14 Blackbird

WEBS count at lake and really pleased that at least one Goosander stayed around, with Teal numbers on the rise with 19 birds present also 3 Cormorant in high fir tree.
heres full count.
The very smart male, hope he has some company soon.

On out through College and along back drive lots of Corvids around with a single Meadow pipit overhead, plus this Pied Wagtail.

This distant Buzzard hunting, watched him dive into grass only to fly off empty clawed.

Plenty of House Sparrow at Newton Farm shop and at horse fields a single Yellowhammer.

 The skies had turnned grey and overcast now so light was awful, but still nice to see this little yellow chap.

My count for the walk was pretty good at 45 species just missing a few common species to get to that elusive 50 count. 
Just before home this Grey Heron flew over the top of my house, must have been feeding in brook, i doubt my pond would give him much to eat!

Met some very nice people on walk today, always nice to chat.

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Sunday, 3 December 2017

The Return + catch up

Date: 03/12/2017
Location: Newton St Loe
Grey, ending with some blue much warmer. 
Species Highlights: 
Goosander, Teal, Fieldfare
Headed out through Bath Mill with Brook and even fields very quiet, apart from Blackbirds on dog walk near apple trees, as of other years at least 10 birds with a couple of Redwing. Also here 1 male & 1 Female Blackcap, hidden in trees so couldn't get picture.
Into village and mostly quiet too,farm shop seemed busy with BMW, Mercedes and Audi all checking out the bargains! 
A few more chaffinch in village and at church yard orchard Redwing, Fieldfare, Blackbirds and Robin feeding on fallen apples. All very jumpy.

All keeping a eye on me, took me 15 mins of keeping still to get these shots!

A lack of Jackdaw numbers today, numbers normally into the 30-50 but today i see on Avonbirds blog, large numbers at Marksbury so could explain where ours were, Rook and Crow numbers the same as usual here. 
Down on to lakes, all number rising with some new additions, 3 Goosander have returned. I'm really pleased to see them back and hope the numbers rise into the 20's as they have previous years.

7 Teal plus Mallard numbers into the high 30's all regulars present apart from Little Grebe who seems to come and go, all looking good for next WEBS count.

Bit of older news

Was getting ready to go to work on the Friday 01/12 and had a phone call from Robert Hargreaves and Anne, WOODCOCK present on patch a few words and my coat was on camera in hand, i drove to village and ran down to Fisherman's carpark where i met them both, the Woodcock went down under tree towards security office. I ventured into field to look under tree, Robert had his camera pointing in case i flushed it. I found a hare almost stood on it! 
Then all of a sudden the Woodcock flew straight at Robert and Anne, No Picture!! It Flew past and disappeared over bottom lake never to be seen again, i did search for 30 mins but nothing. But a great bird to get on patch. 
This takes our Patch record ticks this year to 85 species and all time patch count to 94.

On the 30th November i went to Slimbridge, Freezing cold but blue skies for some parts and some great birds .


 The Water Rail showed extremely well from the Willow hide.

Little Stint saw 3 birds but always very distant.

The funniest thing i've seen in ages was this Hooded Merganser, he caught a monster fish then the decided someone was chasing him, there was no one chasing him! He continued to splash his way across the pen with his prize wedged in his jaws......

Once he made dry land he dropped it!
 But continued to run then swim, another bird did eventually pick it up, and eat the fish. The Merganser didn't quite know what had happened to his prize,  The glory comes from the chase anyway, Lol.

The Buffleheads looking fantastic in the sunshine.

The last couple of hours i spent in the Rushy hide where Bewick's and the light were perfect!

Shelduck, Pintail were entertaining me flying in front the hide against blue skies.

A brief visit from this Buzzard made all rise to the skies and panic.

Golden Plover one of the species that took to the skies, looking golden in the sunshine.

Now very cold after 5 hours at Slimbridge, i decided on departing just as this Bewick's family arrived, always a great place and even better when the skies are blue!

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Sunday, 26 November 2017

Sunday Patch 39 species & 6 miles

Date: 26/11/2017
Location: Newton St Loe
Weather: Overcast & cold
Species Highlights: 
Teal, Fieldfare, Jay, Redwing.
After working last night got up around 11am and headed out around patch, Bath Mill had a influx of Jay seeing 3 walking through, with Blackbird numbers high too, at least 10 on dog walk underneath apple trees.

Up on to Fields and saw 10 pheasant, no Skylark seen although a few Meadow Pipit flying through. Big numbers of LBB & B headed gulls seen today.

Redwing overhead in village and really pleased to see our first Fieldfare this winter in church orchard, chasing off any Blackbirds and Robin that were stealing his apples.

In Sheep field below church yard lots of activity with Goldfinch, Song Thrush, Nuthatch and even 3 Pied Wagtail feeding around the 2 sheep in field.

Plenty of Rook, Crow and Jackdaw in fields before SAC (Send A Cow) Goldcrest in SAC Woodland but not much else today. 
Up onto Lake, lower 10 Mallard and Billy the Mute plus this Kingfisher , fishing from at least 15ft up a tree and catching!

Top lake all 3 Swan present that Cygnet still with mum & Dad, Strange ?!
Really pleased to see the Teal back, 10 birds in normal spot at far end of lake by boathouse.

In yews in college Redwing feeding along with Greenfinch, all very flighty you'd think they'd be used to disruption from students.

On out through college and onto back drive lots i mean 100's of Black Headed Gulls flying overhead never seen so many, it's normally Lesser Black Backed gulls flying to roost but BH today outnumbering by 100's.

House Sparrow in village but little else going on. This Buzzard is interesting, we first saw it November 5th today unusually it with perched on pole in village watching horse field, Rabbits? notice his face?

A car went past as i approached!

He seems to have a feathers out of place or marking on his face, not sure if it's a injury? i'll keep a eye on him. At least i'll be able to tell him apart from the rest.

That was it today, need some sunshine! Ended the walk on 39 Species & 6 miles.

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Friday, 24 November 2017

Patch Gold today

Date: 23/11/2017
Location: Newton St Loe
Weather: Some Blue, some rain and wind
Species Highlights: 
Lapwing, Greenfinch.
Weather been grey and wet recently but this morning it started blue and sunny so headed out around patch. I'm very glad i did! Along brook which was very high, alarm going off at bridge. goldcrest in trees but nothing out of the ordinary here. On up to fields Skylark, Linnet and Meadow Pipits but not in big numbers. 
As i looked towards Seven acre woods i thought i saw a Wood pigeon flock, better check i thought as quite distant and to my amazement it was Lapwing!!! 

I counted 24 Birds flying right over the top of Seven Acre, Excellent, Patch Gold as they say.

The last time we had Lapwing was 2010, taken with my first camera D3000 85mm lens.
That was one bird so 24 a record for sure and takes our Patch total this year to 84 species, we've beaten last year by 2 species and still 38 days to go !!

Wood pigeon in large numbers with at least 70+ in this one tree.

Despite the lovely sunshine and the still smiling face from the lapwings, species were quite low on this walk, i was expecting to see more Redwing, Fieldfare and Mistle Thrushes but as of yet on walk was missing these but 4 Roe deer 2 in church fields + 1 back on dog track.

Plus this cracking little male in send a cow Woodland.

Lakes very quite but good news Billy the male Mute on lower lake is back! not sure where he went but he's back and took food from me. 3 Mute still on top with no sign today of the Water Rail.
A few Redwing in normal Yew trees and Mistle thrush now, 2 Greenfinch plus a couple of Chaffinches.

Out back along rear drive 25+ of each corvid feeding in fields.

At end of drive 6/7 Greenfinch in trees, similar place to last week.

Blue skies looking splendid.

Didn't mention but Coal tits and Goldcrest in good numbers with at least 6 and 7 birds seen along walk. West of England falconry had about 5 Harris Hawks and this other Raptor, not sure what it is.

No Stonechat today as farmer seems to be pulling hedgerow where i normally see them!! No ideal why, if i see him i'll ask . Ended the day on 38 species, but still smiling from the Lapwings.
 Just got home and it poured down, Perfect.

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