Sunday, 25 January 2009

What A Buteo-full Morning, 25th January 2009

No I haven't suddenly developed a Norfolk accent nor have I forgotten how to spell beautiful! But I am referring to the number of Buzzards I had this morning at Moss House Farm. Thinking about it, it was a classic morning for soaring Buzzards. There was plenty of sunshine and a moderate wind to also create lift from buildings and blocks of woodland. I had the first two Buzzards just after I had put some seed down at the feeding station and I was walking north along the '97 Hedge. I could hear Buzzard calling and over to the southeast two birds were circling and calling to each other. I scanned round and picked up a hovering bird and then another two circling over some woodland on the next farm. So that's 5 so far. Later on as I was walking south down the track I had three birds interacting with each other over the L Wood and I could see a further 2 Buzzards thermalling to the south. So in total that made 10 Buzzards! Incidentally that is the most I have seen from Moss House Farm.

A number of Pink-footed Geese were on the move this morning, when I say on the move, I mean local movements between feeding stations or when they were flushed. I had a total of 1,638 and also I had similar movements of Lapwings and these totalled 466. All of the Lapwings I had were flying so had probably been flushed from feeding sites locally but I did think that maybe some of these birds were continental birds that were flocking before dispersing east.

I recorded 6 Song Thrushes this morning and most of these were within the L Wood. Interestingly I didn't have any other thrushes other than 9 Blackbirds. I didn't have as many Woodpigeons today only 1,500 which is nothing compared to the 4,200 Phil had here yesterday afternoon. Mixed in with the Woodpigeons were a number of Starlings and Corvids, and the majority of the Corvids were Jackdaws.

At the feeding station itself there was some seed left from when I fed last on Thursday so increasing the feed is working and consequently I counted 116 Tree Sparrows here. I didn't have any Corn Buntings or Yellowhammers with the Tree Sparrows only 9 Chaffinch and 2 Reed Buntings.

In the field to the north of Curlew Wood the Linnet flock had built up to 80 birds and the associated Goldfinch that were around a couple of weeks ago have now moved on. As I walked up the '97 Hedge I flushed 3 pairs of Grey Partridge and 5 Brown Hares were active in the Big Field.

I had my first Skylarks of the morning in this field and ended up with a total 29 by the end of my walk. It was a cold blustery morning but the sun was shining and it was fantastic to hear Skylark singing away. Just after I had seen two Kestrels I flushed a Short-eared Owl that gave stonking views as it flew across Curlew Field and straight into the front garden of Curlew Farm!

I only had 3 Roe Deer this morning walking out of the Plantation and the Plantation itself was dead other than a single Blackbird and single Teal on the pool. On the way home I stopped off to look over the River Wyre from the lay by at Townend and had 41 Teal on the incoming tide.

Once again struggling to find a relevant picture, here is a picture of a male American Redstart I took at Long Point Bird Observatory in 2005. Now that would be a cracking bird to get out of a mist net over here one morning. The first American Redstart that I ringed was at Long Point Bird Observatory in April 1989. I was in the 'chair' in the banding lab and was working my way at fast pace through the large number of birds in bird bags hung up on the pegs around the banding lab walls. I was pulling out Magnolia Warblers, Yellow-rumped Warblers, Yellow Warblers, Empidonax Flycatchers, Thrushes, Sparrows etc, I think you get the picture, and I pulled out my first male Yanky Start and had process it as quickly as possible! Thankfully I got several more that I could take my time over!


Newton Stringer said...

There was me just happily reading about woodpigeons and roe deer and then you hit us with an unexpected YANK FEST !!


Wot ? ...Jealous ?.... Me ?

...... WELL YEAH !!!

Fleetwood Birder said...

Sorry about that Gary; just trying to brighten up a dreary old winter. I don't know about you but when it gets to the end of Jan I've had enough of winter and want to fast forward to Spring!