Thursday, 2 December 2010

Lots of Finches, but Still No Snow

I had a few hours owing me so when I went to Rawcliffe Moss to feed this morning I took a little longer and had a walk round. Out here on the Fylde we still haven't got any snow and it doesn't look like we'll get any (famous last words!), so that's good news.

 This is as close as the snow got!

There was a hard frost again this morning as I made my way down the track to the feeding station. No Yellowhammers in the usual place at the Pheasant feeder but there were 6 at the feeding station. I had 6 Skylarks go over fairly high heading east and I also had 2 Kestrels.

 Ingredients for a Tree Sparrows brunch

And here it is laid out for them

I pushed 9 Blackbirds and a Song Thrush out of the hedge and 7 starlings that had been feeding on the fruit I put out left towards Curlew Wood. It was pleasing to note that Tree Sparrow numbers had increased to 130 and 4 Corn Buntings and 2 Coal Tits were at the feeding station as well.

This young Woodpigeon was very tame and I think probably suffering 
from the cold

I headed up the '97' hedge to have a look again for the finch flock I had last Sunday. As I walked along the southern edge of the wild bird seed mix I could see a large number of finches lifting off and dropping down again. I got in a position with the sun behind me and tried to estimate numbers. There were about 200 Chaffinch, 15 Reed Buntings, 100 Linnets and at least 20 Bramblings. These are conservative estimates and there could have been half as many birds again.

 You wouldn't believe that in this vegetation are 200 Chaffinch, 100 Linnets, 
170 Skylarks, 15 Reed Buntings, 20 Bramblings and a Short-eared Owl! 
Or maybe you would.

As I walked along I pushed 170 Skylarks out of the stubble field next to the wild bird seed mix and then I flushed a Short-eared Owl from the wild bird seed crop which caused pandemonium amongst the finches! As I headed towards the L Wood I could hear a party of Long-tailed Tits calling, which was odd as I was in the middle of some fairly large arable fields, and then I looked up and saw eight of them flying east!

I had a look in the :L Wood and flushed a single Woodcock which rounded off a pleasant mornings stroll.

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