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Saturday, August 18, 2012

18th August

Regent’s Park

In general it was a fairly quiet day, with one of the fab four making up for the lack of other migrants.

Common Sandpiper: What was probably the bird now present for its fourth day was on the shores of Heron Island at 6.30am viewed from the area 9. It was the seen back in the Longbridge Sanctuary in the afternoon.

Swift: twelve were above the lake at 6.20am and a couple of singles flew through later on.

Reed Warbler: three birds in the Wetland Pen and one by Hanover Bridge.

Garden Warbler: one in the Cricket Pen.

Common Whitethroat: five birds moving between area 31 and 32.

Blackcap: six birds doing pretty much the same as the whitethroats.

Willow Warbler: five in the Cricket Pen.

Chiffchaff: seven birds in the Cricket Pen.

Pied Flycatcher: having had my look in the Wetland Pen disturbed by one of Veolia’s staff coming in to feed the waterfowl, not that I had seen much anyway. She then banged down the lid of the corn bin scaring the birds from the nearby bird feeders. I looked back to see a bird alight on top of one of the willows. It was a flycatcher, raising my bins I was delighted to see a cracking juv Pied Flycatcher. I retraced my steps hoping to get a photo, I stopped a fair distance from the bird and got a record shot. The little blighter then decided to fly towards the island by Deadmans Corner ( at north eastern end of the lake). As I walked out of the Wetland Pen I thought that it would be hard to pin it down on there. My attention was then drawn to some tacking coming from the nearby Elm thicket. On top of one of the dead Elms sat a flycatcher, the light was not great but the shape was right for Pied. I got into a better position and when I lifted my bins I was rewarded with views of a stunning Pied Flycatcher. I watched it for 3 minutes and managed to point it out to a regular park user who has an interest in birds. She to was pleased to see this scare park visitor. It then flew towards the Pines and I decided that it was time for breakfast.

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My first view of the flycatcher

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That is better

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Two whitethroats were not keen on sharing this tree, which is an area that is a sun trap and means plenty of insects.

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Common Whitethroat avoiding the sun

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Common Sandpiper back in the Longbridge Sanctuary

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The Little Grebes showed well by the Bandstand Island

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Little and very large

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You can almost make out the photographer in this picture

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Jersey Tiger Moth, 2nd park record?

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Brown Hawker seen just below the flycatcher

2 comments:

birdman_euston said...

Nice pics of the Pied Flycatcher, Tony - like Redwings, they look different in the sunlight (i.e., with the brown tones washed out in favour of grey) than in the shade.

By coincidence, I was peering through the Goose Pen gate next to Longbridge iwhen 'Mrs Veolia' , chatting on a mobile, passed through on her way toward you. Crazy as it sounds :), I discreetly followed her progress along the boundary fence toward the Wetland Pen with my bins, just in case she flushed out one of the Fab Four (e.g. Whinchat, Redstart or Pied Fly). Silly me...

By further coincidence, about forty minutes later (after viewing at length the domestic bliss of the new Great Crested Grebe family) I bumped into a birder named Hugh Prior, who didn't know the Cricket Pen but knew a Pied Flycatcher when he saw one - at 08:00, he said. (I gave him credit on Wiki for seeing it first; apologies if it should have been you.)

birdman_euston said...

19 Aug:

Another boiling-hot day in store (temperature 23C at dawn but with refreshing light E breeze).

In addition to what Tony saw today, I had:

Tree Pipit 1 (perched briefly in two trees then flew down to join the Chiffchaffs in the Rose Wheel, Queen Mary's Gardens, area 17 at 09:35).
I can't imagine it lingered long among the roses as there was a constant stream of Park visitors with cameras; breast band with thick, sharp black stripes on rich buff-yellow - emphasis on yellow - background, coalescing into very small, diffuse central spot with little or no obvious side striping and pale-pink legs - without obvious extra-long hind claw though I admit this was the one feature I was not specifically looking for, head with malar stripe and without the 'open-faced' look of a meadow pipit, no noticeable tail-wagging, strangely. As one can tell from the painstaking description above, this was another lifer!)

Reed Warbler 1 (in dead elm copse at W end of Cricket Pen, area 31 at 08:45).

Chiffchaff 4 (areas 17, 19 and 39).

Willow Warbler 3 (locations as above).

House Martin 7.

(No swifts seen.)

(Another birder named Frank saw the Common Sandpiper for a fifth day, on rocky island beach just NE from viewing platform in Longbridge Sanctuary, area 34 at 07:00.)