Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Hobby vs Peg

 In comes the Hobby (adult)
 Peregrine's clocked it (Juvenile Peg)
 Hobby circles over
and dives 
Hobby re-considers wisdom of attack as it's chased off with life in the balance
 Whinchat again today. Also 2 Spot Flys on 100 acre and Roger had 2 Cuckoos (really want to see them- juveniles, one of my favourite autumn local birds).
Lapwings- despite the flooded conditions a group still around (I thought they'd gone)
Meet Helen (hopefully will be working with us locally)  this morning and had a tour of the Hackbridge Project and Beddington Farmlands Projects. We witnessed a Hobby and a Peregrine having an altercation and also saw the 2 Spot Flys that Roger found but didn't see the Cuckoos he found.
Spent the afternoon doing some work (after discussing revolution with Matt who popped in for Trout and chips) on the obs garden and farmlands entrance but difficult to focus as Dingers was finding a Barred Warbler Here at Staines Moor and seems like Pied Flys are turning up everywhere. So good (birding) overcame evil (work) and I dropped tools and had a look along the path and Parkside. Had a few warblers and Whinchat. 

More from Roger HERE

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Sushi lesson

In keeping with the tradition of this blog hosting posts with some rather tenuous links to Birding here is a lesson on how to make sushi with Sushi-guru Rosie and assistant Jen.  

 1. Get in the spirit
 2. Spread sushi rice over seaweed
 3. Add strips of salmon and tuna sushi
 4. Add some avocado
 5. Roll it up
 6. Slice it up
7. Serve it up
(with an icy Caipirinha)
The tenuous link here is that Dingers and I do our birding business in sushi restaurants (sustainably sourced) so learning how to make it ourselves was a real treat. Thanks to Andrew and family! Great evening. 

Migrants etc

 Another good wave of migrants today. Two Whinchats (above), 1 Yellow Wagtail over, 25+ House Martin, a few Sand Martins and Swallows.
 Chiffchaff- one of 10 on the bridge, also Redstart, Spotted Flycatcher, 1 Lesser Whitethroat (Roy had two more), 2-3 Willow Warbler, 2-3 Common Whitethroat, 8 Blackcap, 1 Reed Warbler on the bridge. 
 2-3 Sedge Warbler by the lake
 An influx of Cormorants and Gadwall today. 35+ Teal and 10+ Shoveler around. Waders present today include 3 Dunlin, the juvenile Black-tailed Godwit, Common and Green Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank and 2 Snipe.
 Vestal- the first for the farmlands. A migrant moth.
 White-point- another migrant. Also had Silver-Y last night and Painted Lady seen by Roy and Phil today too.
 Aethes sp- a few of these on the mound
Eristalis arbustorum (I think)- one of the only hoverflies around at the moment. Also a few Migrant Hawker dragonflies about and the odd Common Darter. 

Monday, 31 August 2015

Wash Out


Brightened up for a few hours in the afternoon

Was supposed to be at the Carshalton Environmental Fair today promoting our nature friendly gardens but the weather was atrocious meaning two things 1) It was going to be very hard work at the fair 2) Birds were probably going to be pushed into the farmlands. Therefore the decision was made to go birding, set a make-shift virtual stand up on line (pics above) and then we went to fair in the afternoon, when the weather was predicted to clear up to hand out flyers.

38+1 Common Tern over, 18 Ringed Plover, 3 Dunlin, Black-tailed Godwit, Wood Sandpiper, 5 Green Sandpiper, 4 Common Sandpiper, 5 Snipe, 3 Golden Plover, Lapwings and 1 Tree Pipit proved that it wasn't a bad decision. A good day.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

Looking good for waders

 The enclosed bed looking in top shape for the autumn wader passage. Today there were seven species of wader on this bed; Black-tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Wood Sandpiper, 2 Greenshank, 5 Green Sandpiper, 3 Common Sandpiper and 1 Ruff with Lapwing and Snipe on the lakes- nine species in total.
 The juvenile Wood Sandpiper still present- no sign of the Pec
 Juvenile Black-tailed Godwit- the only problem with the large enclosed bed is that the waders are at difficult to photograph at distance
Juvenile Whinchat. A few other migrants around today including 40+ Swallow, 10+ Sand Martin, 1 Swift (probably the last one now), five Yellow Wagtail over, a high probable Black Tern, 5-6 Sedge Warbler (the ringers caught five), a handful of Willow Warblers and Chiffchaffs, a few Blackcaps, the odd Whitethroat and  the ringers also caught the third Kingfisher of the autumn (they have been prominent around the lakes recently)

Saturday, 29 August 2015

Stone Age Lunch

Sid, Iris and I decided to see if we could collect our lunch from the wild today
 First stop was Beddington Park Spring for some water
Then over to the nature reserve to see what we could find to eat
 We got a bit distracted as the Birders were gripping us off - a Pec Sand was around and also raptors were on the move
 We had a Red Kite
and a Common Buzzard
 Then we went collecting- Apples, Blackberries, Wild Plums, Mullberries (actually from the Park), some Mallow leaves, Mints, Eleagnus berries (from the Obs hedges) and some Rose Hips.

  Lunch was served back at the Obs 
  Then we processed the moth trap and found this Small Mottled Willow- a first for Beddington Farmlands
 Then back to drop Sid and Iris back home, where we released this juvenile Great Spotted Woodpecker that Steve had caught with his bare hands- saved it from the talons of a Sparrowhawk
Then I went back to the farmlands to look for the Pec Sand and came across this Mandarin walking along the path. All in all, a bit of an odd day. 

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Review of Azores Report 2013

Here's a review of the Azores Rare and Scarce Bird Report 2013 from Birdwatch. Currently working on the 2014 report ready for this season with lots of new improvements and new sections.