Thursday, 17 February 2011

Misty start

With a frost on the car, which caught me out a bit, I arrived at the castle at 7.05, I went and up-dated the sightings board which is situated in the Granary. On the way there it was nice to listen to the Dunnock which likes to sing from near the entrance to the veg. garden. A couple of Canada Geese honked away as they flew east. The Granary was full of calling House Sparrows, I don't mention them much but for a few years we did only have a handful of birds here, maybe only up to 6 at times, this morning though there were at least 15 and flocks last autumn were sometimes 70 strong so hopefully this trend will continue.
So for a change I headed down to the lakes! 3 cock Pheasants were having a bit of a to do and a couple of Mallard flew in, the Grey Heron was back but I couldn't find the Water Rail Stephen had seen yesterday. A small group of 4 Siskin arrived in, just as I met up with Stephen, I set off back to the car and Stephen went into the woods. There were 100+ Woodpigeons over a nearby wood and the Skylarks were again in good voice. There were 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers drumming in the same tree, just above the top lake and a Goldcrest was singing by the corner of the moat from the holly. Nearing the car park at least 3 Greenfinches were calling and flitting around in the treetops and a few Fieldfares and Redwings had flown up from the overflow car park. Later Stephen came across the best flock of Buntings we've had for a while, with 28 Yellowhammers and 7 Reed Buntings, mixed in were a couple Goldfinch and Chaffinch, with a single Lesser Redpoll for good measure.
This was taken yesterday when it was a bit brighter!

It's not a good picture of a Siskin but I like the colours.


Ken. said...

Hi Paul.
Seems like you had a pleasant walk today. Also well done with the flock of Yellowhammer's.

Warren Baker said...

What brought the Buntings in Alan, stubbles ?

Rachel J said...

28 yellowhammers!! Wish I'd seen that. I'm always chuffed when I find a yellowhammer, I don't see them often. And never that many all at once!

Alan Pavey said...


The Yellowhammers are attracted to a small area that has been planted with shrubs and left to go a bit wild, there is stubble nearby and we have counted up to 50 before now, really nice to have them on the estate :-)