Sunday, 16 November 2008


Female Reed Bunting (above)

A bit of a steady westerly with overcast skies, so not expecting too much today.

John and Nick found a Dartford Warbler near the enclosed beds. A very skulky bird which managed to avoid my camera. I think it is only the ten or eleventh for the farm but most of those records have been in recent years- looks like they might be trying to stage a winter colonisation. There were a pair of Stonechats and four Reed Buntings in the same area.

I don't know what the vegetation is in that area but it is certainly good feeding for birds. In addition to the Dartford Warbler, Stonechats and Reed Buntings there were Wrens, Blackbirds, Song Thrushes, Dunnocks and Chaffinches feeding in it. Once again a nice little part of the farm which has just happened by accident.
I had a look round the old gravel pit and along the lake bushes- a few Goldcrests and quite a few tits.

There was a flock of Linnets (about 40+) feeding on the sides of the landfill with a couple of Chaffinches.

Seem to be good numbers of Starling- about 1500 feeding on the tip. About 300-400 mixed crows there.

On the lake, Wigeon numbers were up to six (a significant reduction since landfill operations has commenced) but I reckon there were 50+ Shoveler. Teal numbers are well down in recent years- only about 60-70 today. As usual a handful of Pochards, Tufted Ducks and Little Grebes.

Stonechats (female above, male below).

Not a lot else, a Water Pipit on the enclosed beds (John had three), one Meadow Pipit over, a Green Woodpecker by the Park and that's was my lot.


Steve Gale said...

Hi Peter, the species of plant that used to keep the birds well fed in the autumn/winter when I used to wander over Beddington SF was Fathen, which I believe your first Stonechat picture depicts.

Peter Alfrey said...

Hi Steve,
Thanks for that.I am useless at botany. Well the birds love it- and its free. It just seems to grow in recently disturbed ground.
Thanks again