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Thursday, May 10, 2012

10th May

Just to let you know I will be away in Norfolk for the next 3 days. Hopefully the weather will be kind to me and the group of friends that I will be meeting there. As usual please leave any interesting park observations in the comments section.

Regent’s Park:

Not much to report, the more uncommon park migrants have moved on. The best bird today being;

Garden Warbler: One was singing in area 9 in the trees bordering the grounds of the Holme.

Bushy Park:

As with Regent’s nothing much to report.

Little Egret: One was feeding on tadpoles on the pool nearest the Longford River in area 3 for much of the morning. It then moved to area 24 in the afternoon, before being flushed by horses.

Northern Wheatear: one was south of Upper Lodge Road again.

Common Whitethroat: Being new to the park I am pleasantly surprised by the amount of birds holding territories.


Little Egret





birdman_euston said...

Another 'for the record' correction: it turns out through recent genetic analysis that vireos and New World warblers are *not* near relations; rather, vireos are related to crows and shrikes, warblers to New World tanagers. (A case of convergent rather than divergent evolution, I guess: in the wild, vireos look and act like duller, slower versions of 'wood' warblers.)

birdman_euston said...

11 May: The (dry) cold front went through overnight accompanied by brisk WNW winds, so no migrants. On the other hand, the vegetation finally had a chance to dry out thoroughly making walking more comfortable, although the ground is still saturated.

Near Macclesfield Gate, area 38, a pair of Mistle Thrushes are lining what is presumably a second nest (I heard my first singing Mistle Thrush in this area way back in late February / early March - a lovely harbinger of Spring) 15m up in the crotch of a medium-sized Turkey Oak. I found it when one bird flew in carrying a fragment of paper with bright-green print, so damp that it split down the middle as the bird reached the nest; it lined the nest with both halves anyway.

Happy to report that the family of Red-crested Pochards in area 14 (2 ducklings), and of Greylag Geese in area 13 (1 gosling), are both doing well.

Elderberry is beginning to bloom in area 23.

birdman_euston said...

13 May: Clear and calm at dawn, with light SW breeze later but still no migrants seen.

Collared Dove 2: pair in area 18 next to Nursery Lodge at 06.45.

Reed Bunting 1m: singing in Wetland Pen, area 32 at 07.10.

Reed Warbler 5m: singing in areas 2, 5 (two birds, at opposite ends of the large reed bed SE of the Boathouse Café), 32 and 34. (The singing male heard in the area-13 reed bed for a few days last week may have moved on.)

All six male members of the Park's colony of Chiffchaffs were belting out their signature-tunes this morning - as they have every morning for about two months (!) now, so it's reasonable to assume they've all found mates and at least attempted to nest. For the record, their nicknames and the current centres of their respective territories are:

John - area 13/14
Jason - area 17
Duane - area 19 (& 10)
Geoff - area 31 (& 29/32/34)
Paul - area 40/41 (& 42)
Angus - area 45 (he moved here from the garden of Winfield House, area 1 about a month ago).

Swift - up to four seen hawking insects high over the park at any one time.

New juveniles seen this morning: Chaffinch (area 34) and Starling (Open Spaces, area 37).

The three ash trees just south of the Cricket Pen, area 31 are finally starting to leaf out.

birdman_euston said...

14 May: Visited the park in the late afternoon, after a few hours of light rain carried on SW winds, but there was little avian activity.

Willow Warbler 1: Cricket Pen, area 31, feeding energetically.

Gadwall 2: the pair with the drab, brownish drake was seen again off Long Bridge.