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Thursday, April 29, 2010

27th and 28th April

Action on the bird front is continuing to be very slow.

27th

Turtle Dove: one flew north at 2.00pm.

Common Buzzard: one flew north at 4.00pm.

Kestrel: Two males were hovering over the open spaces during the afternoon. An intruder has been trying to muscle in on the female in the wetland pen.

Swift: one flew over during the afternoon.

Reed Warbler: One singing in the reed bed near the boathouse cafe. 

28th

Turtle Dove: one flew north at 7.15am.

Swift: nine birds over in 1’s and 2’s.

House Martin: twelve birds over the park.

Reed Warbler: two birds in the reed beds near Hanover Bridge, area 2.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

25th April

Little Owl: The male was showing well this morning on Cumberland Green, area 20.

Tawny Owl: The adult was again showing in the Leaf Yard Wood, area 29. Only seen when the Blackbirds and Jay’s drew my attention to it.

Common Swift: Seven birds flew west in a heavy shower at 8.30am.

House Martin: eight birds were over the lake.

Reed Warbler: One in reeds at the end of Hanover Island, area 2.

The other species are much as they have been over the past few days.

Song Thrush

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Little Owl (above) and Tawny Owl (below)

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A trip to the Chiltern yesterday for a walk, pub lunch and my  annual fix of plenty of  graceful Red Kites.

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Friday, April 23, 2010

23rd April

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Garganey: What surely must be last years drake, was back with the collection birds 4 days earlier than last year, again in area 1. There are 7 drakes in the collection and now there are 8.

House Martin: Two birds were over the lake.

Northern Wheatear: A 1st year male was battling with cricketers and dog walkers on the open spaces, area 28.

Reed Warbler: A bird was singing from the reed bed on Hanover Island, area 1.

Sedge Warbler: One was singing very quietly on the Bandstand Island, area 6.

Willow Warbler: Only one bird heard today, in area 2.

Chiffchaff: Three birds singing.

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Garganey in area 1

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These two pictures show the throat sack that is extended when the bird omits its frog like call.

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Northern Wheatear (above) and the 1st Coot family of the year (below).

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

22nd April

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Mandarin Ducks perched on top of an Ash tree in area 1.

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There are at least six male Green Woodpeckers holding territories.

Things quietened down to day a litle today.

Sparrowhawk: Two birds seen.

Tawny Owl: An adult was chased by Blackbirds through the wood in area 29.

Grey Wagtail: A male was feeding along the edge of the lake by the bandstand, for the first time this year.

Willow Warbler: Only two birds heard.

Chiffchaff: Seven birds singing.

Blackcap: Ten birds seen.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

21st April

Common Buzzard: One soared over area 26 at 11.35am, before drifting off eastwards.

Sparrowhawk: Two pairs displayed over Queen Mary’s Gardens at 8.00am.

House Martin: One was over the lake at mid-day.

Common Whitethroat: A male was in area 29 this afternoon.

Willow Warbler: At least nine birds present.

Chiffchaff: Six birds heard.

Blackcap: Males heard all over the park.

Lesser Redpoll: Two flew north

Tufted/Pochard hybrid present at 6.10am.

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Common Buzzard with a blue sky background and then a cloudy background.

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Sparrowhawk (male)

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Great Spotted Woodpecker (female)

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Mandarin preparing for takeoff

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Tufted/Pochard hybrid

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Monday, April 19, 2010

Tw19th April

Swallow: Four birds flew through.

House Martin: Five birds overhead, they could be resident birds returning.

Willow Warbler: Five birds were singing around the park, best viewed in area 26 and 29.

Chiffchaff: Five birds present.

Sparrowhawk: Two pairs seen over the lake.

Kestrel: Three birds seen

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Willow Warbler

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These pictures show the difference in structure of Sparrowhawk (above) and Kestrel (below).

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Sunday, April 18, 2010

18th April

Common Buzzard: Two flew SW at 4.15pm

Red Kite: One was in the company of the above species.

Sparrowhawk: females were seen four times on this mornings bird walk.

Little Owl: the male was heard and seen at 6.20am.

Redwing: One flew north-east.

Swallow: six birds flew north.

House Martin: two flew north.

Grey Wagtail: one flew north.

Chiffchaff: three birds were singing in area 1, 25 and 29.

Blackcap: six males were present.

Jaackdaw: one flew south.

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Little Owl male on the eastern side of the park

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Stock Dove in the Leaf Yard Wood, area 29.

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Asculapian snake in my garden, about 40cm in length.

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

17th April

This week has been very disappointing with very little in the way of spring migrants. The cold north-easterly wind is delaying the arrival of birds on passage. If the forecaster are to be believed then tomorrow could be a reasonable day, if we have some patchy cloud rather than dawn to dusk sunshine.

Last weeks

Chiffchaff: four birds seem to be holding territories.

Blackcap: This species seems to be the only migrant that has increased in numbers; 9 males can be heard in most areas with suitable habitat.

Willow Warbler: One was singing in area 26 15th.

Meadow Pipit: four birds headed north 15th.

Pied Wagtail: Two birds were on the ground 15th.

Jackdaw: One flew east 15th.

House Sparrow: A male was feeding in my garden by St Marks Bridge 15th & 17th. Even though there are still reasonable numbers in the zoo, birds seldom stray.

Goldfinch: Eight birds on feeders in area 29 and in my garden.

Stock Dove: Sixteen birds feeding in my garden by St Marks Bridge every afternoon.

Kestrel: The female in area 25 seems to have chosen her old nest box again this year.

Sparrowhawk: Two females displayed 15th.

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Chiffchaff (above and below)

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Blackcap (female below)

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Wren (below)

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Great Scaup: this bird has been present in the park for thirteen years, having turned up one winter.

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Male Red crested Pochards chase a female high over the lake.

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This is the end result of all that chasing, these hatched out on 15th.

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European Pochard (drake above) Tufted X Pochard hybrid (below)

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Saturday, April 10, 2010

10th April

Sorry there hasn’t been any recent news, I was away at a Birds and Climate Change Conference. So here is an update of what has been around in my absence.

Ring Ouzel: The male was last seen on the 9th unless someone knows otherwise.

Willow Warbler: At least seven were present on the 8th & 9th.

Chiffchaff: Ten birds were singing around the park 8th.

Yellow Wagtail: One flew north at 7.10am 9th.

Lesser Redpoll: Two flew over 9th.

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Several pairs of Grey Herons have young in their nests while others are displaying and looking for nesting opportunities.

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Red Crested Pochards males have been busy chasing females or each other.

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While on my way up to the conference I was able to call in at Eyebrook reservoir. Birds on show included 3 Ospreys, 2 Red Kites, Green-winged Teal, Little-ringed Plover and Tree Sparrow.

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