Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Tuesday 22nd January

It was a gorgeous sunny morning today. The temperature was a lot milder that it has been, and the sky was almost cloudless. Today's post is also my 100th post.

With the Wild Daffodils nearly open, and plenty of bird song, the atmosphere was very spring-like. 5 Great Spotted Woodpeckers were heard calling and drumming, a Treecreeper was calling from an Oak tree, a Nuthatch called from an Oak in the wood on the southern edge of the Park, 4 Jay was seen, and a few parties of Long-tailed Tits were seen. 2 Green Woodpeckers were seen – with 1 bird drumming finishing touches to its hole in an Alder, in the Alder wood along the River Len. I decided to spend about 20-30 minutes in the Alder wood to see if I could spot the rather elusive Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, and with only 2 minutes gone I located a female drumming near the top of a tree. However, within seconds of locating it, she flew onto another Alder and frustratingly kept to the side I couldn’t view. After a further 15 minutes had passed I decided to move on, being satisfied with the brief but beautiful view. A flock of around 15 Siskin fed with a large flock of Goldfinch also along the Len.

Birds that were present on the Lake were at least 2 Mute Swans, with a Black Swan for company, 32 Canada Geese, a pair of Pochard, 3 Great Crested Grebes – all now in summer plumage, 1 Little Grebe, and the countless Mallards, Coots and Moorhens. The gull flock on the Lake consisted of at least 17 Common Gulls, and 42 Black-headed Gulls – 1 of which had it’s summer chocolate brown hood on. Also, in addition to these birds, a Grey Heron was seen, 4 Water Rail were heard, 2 Cormorants were fishing on the Lake, and a Lesser Black-backed Gull flew north.

Also of note, was the information from a fisherman that he had caught a Trout along the River Len, earlier in the morning, and the first female Hazel flower was nearly out. These tiny tufts of crimson flowers always strike me as looking like miniature sea anenomes.


As I approached the Hazel bush it appeared as if each branch was dripping with catkins.

5 comments:

Warren Baker said...

Nice list of species there simon. you've got some good habitat. How many species have you recorded in the park in total?

Steve of Kingsdown said...

Great to read that you saw & heard a Lesser Pecker. It must be the time of the year again for me to scan the bare branches in the vain hope of seeing one.

Simon said...

Since starting a list 2 and a half years ago I have recorded 95 species...so far!

Steve said...

Great to hear about the Lesser Spot Simon....

Steve of Kingsdown said...

Thanks for the inspiration Simon - we went out today and finally saw one - lovely - first ever!

Next Event - TBA