Wednesday, 4 May 2011

May 4th

Even though May is a great month for birds, most of the summer visitors that we're likely to get are now here, so this month tends to be enjoying the songs of the new arrivals and looking for evidence of breeding regulars, with hopefully a surprise thrown in here and there. This morning there was plenty of song, COMMON WHITETHROATS dominating proceedings, once again the LESSER WHITETHROAT rattled from the same hedge. Although he has been singing now for a while I've only seen him a couple of times, generally staying deep in the middle of the hedge(that's him not me!). A GREY HERON croaked loudly as it flew south and SONG THRUSH was in full song from the by the gardeners cottages. I could hear the NIGHTINGALE from the cottages, which are a good few hundred yards from it's favoured area, I always find that pretty impressive how their song carries. Nearing the lake 2 GOLDCRESTS were very vocal and my first BLACKCAP of the morning was heard, usually there have been at least 2 or 3 birds heard by this point in the walk. Through the wood a MARSH TIT  was heard from the undergrowth and a TREECREEPER sang from near the stream.
My most exciting find today wasn't a bird or an animal,as such, it was tracks, around the newish pools as you leave the wood there were a dozen or so deer tracks, probably Roe. I've never seen deer on the estate and very rarely find any sign of them, so it was great to know they are about! After I finished looking at the tracks a fast flying bird caught my eye, a male MANDARIN headed towards the stream, the first I've seen for a while. Walking back there were half a dozen SWALLOWS over the fields, 3 YELLOWHAMMERS were singing and a male REED BUNTING flitted off the top of the hedge. I met Stephen further on, he had seen a Little Owl on his way in, on a post by the last layby before the car park.

This Pheasant flew up from by rares hedge


Greenie said...

Alan ,
Your flight shots of the Pheasant really capture the intensity of their wing beat , to keep themselves airborne . Well done .

ShySongbird said...

Most enjoyable Alan. I do wish I was as adept at recognising birds by song as you obviously are. It is not for the want of trying! I have listened to recordings for years but it just won't stay in my brain. I listen to one and think I have 'got it' then hear another and the first has completely gone :( It really is frustrating!!

Great shots of the Pheasant. I should have had a lovely photo of one posed on a gate but we were driving at the time and although it was still there when we pulled up next to it, the camera was on the back seat and by the time I managed to reach it the Pheasant was disappearing round the gatepost into the undergrowth ;)

Lovely photo of the beautifully posed Robin too.

Alan Pavey said...

Hi Greenie, Thanks, I'm really enjoying having a go at some photography, as you can see wtih pretty varied results!! :-)

Hi ShySongbird, Thanks, I think I'm lucky that I got started early with bird song but there are still loads of things I still can't get, maybe we'll both pick them up eventually :-)

Pheasant on a gate would be a classic shot, hopefully the camera will be closer to hand if it happens again :-)