An excellent morning so far. As well as the Whinchat, the following also recorded:
Hepatic phase female cuckoo (performing its bubbling call) flew over the canal and landed in a tree along Egg Lane.
Singing male Cuckoo at Tapenhall.
An Oystercatcher flew over Tapenhall
A Lapwing flew over Mildenham
A Peregrine at Tapenhall perched on electricity pylon + Raven and Kestrel.
Two Redpolls flew over near Tapenhall (Lucy's Wood area).
Lapwing at Copcut Rise + Common Whitethroat
Seems like a large influx of Sedge Warblers along the canal - litterally everywhere between Tapenhall and Hawford.
Also, 1 Willow Warbler, Common Whitethroats, Lesser Whitethroats, Yellowhammer, RL Partridges, Sparrowhawk, Reed Warblers, Chiffchaffs, Blackcaps, Coots, 2 Gadwalls, 2 Kingfishers, Swallows and Sand Martins.
A few more items from today:
A Little Owl heard this morning at Ladywood (but not showing)
A Mistle Thrush feeding a recently fledged juvenile this evening in Droitwich woods.
5 Greylags flew over Coney this evening
Cuckoo calling around Coney this evening
1 Swift over towards Westwood (where a very large flock of hirundines had gathered)
April has been an outstanding month on the patch, with a total of 97 species recorded over the past 30 days. My current patch year list stands at 105 species.
Male Whinchat again in scrubby patch along river near Tapenhall pool.
Further birds from this morning's rounds:
3 Greylags over Tapenhall
Cuckoo (2 males calling Tapenhall area + non-calling bird seen)
Yellowhammer between Egg Lane and Jacob's Ladder
Lapwing and singing Willow Warbler Copcut Rise
Lesser Whitethroat (2) at Porter's Mill
Gadwalls, Common Whitethroats and Sedge Warblers very numerous, Linnets, Reed Warblers, Mistle Thrushes, Blackcaps, Chiffchaffs, 5 RL Partridges, Buzzards, Stock Doves, Grey Wagtail, Canada Geese, House Martins, Swallows, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Nuthatch, Grey Herons, Jay, Reed Buntings.
Spent a lovely morning down at Coney Meadow and heres my sightings:
Mallard (one female with 3 ducklings), Moorhen, Grey Heron, Buzzard, Kestrel, Pheasant, Black-Headed Gull, Lesser Black-Backed Gull, Carrion Crow, Raven, Magpie, Jackdaw, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Stock Dove, 1 Cuckoo (non-calling bird), 5/6 Swift, Swallow, House Martin, Common Whitethroat, Sedge Warbler, Reed Warbler, Chiffchaff, Blackbird, Robin, Wren, Dunnock, Goldcrest, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-Tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Chaffinch and Reed Bunting.
Swifts starting to increase now, based on an early afternoon walk:
1 over Copcut Rise
5+ over New Mill
4+ over Coney
Also plenty of Sand Martins, House Martins and Swallows - especially around New Mill.
Lesser Whitethroats at New Mill (2) and Ladywood along the canal.
A pair of Coots have 3+ freshly hatched chicks on the pond between Hawford and Chatley.
A Pipit sp. flew low over Coney early afternoon - it had white outer tail feathers and its flight was stronger than a Meadow Pipit. Although it circled low a couple of times, frustratingly, it didn't call. I suspect it was probably a Tree Pipit.
Whinchat again on fence by Tapenhall pool.
Little Owl between Egg Lane and Jacob's Ladder. 4 Yellowhammers.
Cuckoos at Salwarpe and Tapenhall this morning.
The usual warblers including 2 LWT
Yellow Wagtail over Harford Hill just.
2 Greylags over Coney this morning.
A few Swifts about including 3+ at Tapenhall earlier.
2 Gadwall at New Mill, Kingfishers at Porter's Mill and Salwarpe, singing Coal Tit, singing Willow Warbler Copcut Rise, Treecreeper, Grey Wags.
Heres a shot of the Cuckoo from yesterday.
A Little Egret just flew over Coney Meadow and up the Salwarpe valley - new for the year, amazingly!
A Water Rail called from Coney reedbed this evening - they've been very quiet for the last few weeks.
A male Kestrel caught and ate a Vole.
Male Cuckoo calling and showing well.
SMW reports singing Grasshopper Warbler at Tapenhall this morning - in scrubby patch along river.
I was there until 06:50 - had to leave due to work - and the bird started at 07:13. Will try and get down there this evening.
Did have Cuckoos at Coney and Tapenhall this morning plus the usual warblers etc. A pair of Gadwall over Coney also.
Comparison of return dates on the patch for a selection of species over the last 5 ye
Chiffchaff (singing) 01/04/12, 10/03/13, 01/03/14, 09/03/15, 23/03/16
Willow Warbler 02/04/12, 13/04/13, 04/04/14, 08/04/15, 31/03/16
Grasshopper Warbler 28/04/12, 16/04/13, 05/04/14, 11/04/15, 08/04/16
Sedge Warbler 19/04/12, 16/04/13, 13/04/14, 11/04/15, 17/04/16
Reed Warbler 21/04/12, 17/04/13, 12/04/14, 14/04/15, 17/04/16
Lesser Whitethroat 02/05/12, 13/04/13, 13/04/14, 22/04/15, 17/04/16
Common Whitethroat 01/05/12, 20/04/13, 14/04/14, 18/04/15, 13/04/16
Swallow 14/04/12, 13/04/13, 23/03/14, 12/03/15, 30/03/16
House Martin 11/04/12, 14/04/13, 13/04/14, 06/04/15, 30/03/16
Sand Martin 21/04/12, 14/04/13, 23/03/14, 04/04/15, 25/03/16
Cuckoo 18/04/12, 17/04/13, 14/04/14, 14/04/15, 19/04/16
Blackcap (singing) 10/03/12, 13/04/13, 02/03/14, 23/02/15, 27/03/16
Spotted Flycatcher 12/05/12, 31/05/13, 19/05/14, 13/05/15, Not yet recorded in '16
Hobby 08/05/12, 02/05/13, 04/05/14, 21/04/15, 27/04/16
Swift 30/04/12, 29/04/13, 02/05/14, 19/04/15, 24/04/16
Yellow Wagtail -- , 17/04/13, 19/04/14, 26/04/15, 17/04/16
Whinchat 25/04/13, -- , 18/04/15, 30/04/16
Wheatear -- , 04/05/14, 19/04/15, 13/04/16
Note: Both Chiffchaff and Blackcap birds present from early January 2016. It is difficult to ascertain whether singing birds are freshly returned migrants or just over-wintering birds stirred into performing by favourable weather conditions. One incidence of a ‘pollinated’ Chiffchaff has been recorded – which may be a more reliable sign of a recently returned migrant from the Mediterranean basin.
Got the Gropper at Tapenhall singing now.
Tufted Duck drake and 3 Greylags over.
This morning's birds (05:15 - 06:50):
Coney Meadow: Cormorant over, Lesser Whitethroat, 3+ Whitethroats, Sedge and Reed Warblers, Cuckoo.
Ladywood: Little Owl
Tapenhall: Grasshopper Warbler singing from 06:40, 2 singing male Cuckoos + 'bubbling' female. Lots of Whitethroats + Sedge Warblers, Gadwall, Coots.
quick hour this evening down coney, rewarded with 3 cuckoos.pied wag and swallows came into roost,but surprise was the amount of different Bats flying by the canal bridge
pics 1 & 2 same male, pic 3 different male this bird gave what sounded like a stuttered call?
Grasshopper Warbler singing again this morning at Tapenhall.
Cuckoo, Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats, Lesser Whitethroats, Reed Warblers, House Martins, Swallows, Coots, male Gadwall and Canada Geese also.
3 Lapwings at New Mill
3+ Cuckoos at Coney
1 Willow Warbler Droitwich Woods
Drake Mandarin between Mildenhall and Hawford - currently perched on a bare bough of a tree along the river.
Male Lapwing displaying over Tapenhall plus female.
Lesser Whitethroat Egg Lane. Tufted Duck over.
Little Owl showed well at Ladywood this morning.
Today's sightings so far:
Grasshopper Warbler showed reasonably well from the canal towpath at Tapenhall this morning - perched briefly in a bush.
2 Hobbies seen from Coney early afternoon
Garden Warbler singing in garden near Salwarpe village hall.
Drake Mandarin and a pair of Tufted Ducks Hawford.
Displaying Lapwing at Tapenhall - also present yesterday there.
Cuckoos at Coney, Porter's Mill, Tapenhall (3+) and Hawford.
Yellowhammers Egg Lane area.
10 Swifts over Coney.
Reeds, Sedges, Common and Lesser Whitethroats, Little Owl between Egg Lane and Jacob's Ladder, Cormorant, Coal Tit, Chiffs and Blackcap.
Kestrels, Grey Wagtails, Kingfishers
Great views of another Hobby over Mildenham this evening.
Insects a lot more plentiful now - especially Orange Tips and Small Tortoiseshells plus 2 Holly Blues, 2 Brimstones, Comma, Large White and Peacock today. Also my first Beautiful Demoiselle of the year.
Oystercatcher circling over Coney Meadow calling constantly.
Grasshopper Warbler singing at Tapenhall this morning plus Lapwing still and Cuckoo, drake Tufted Duck, Gadwall, Grey Heron and Coot pair with chicks.
Sad news that one of the Mute Swans which were nesting at Porter's Mill has been killed - looks like either a traffic collision or an attack by a large animal.
Spotted Flycatcher Salwarpe village by weir along the river. I think that's all the regular migrants now accounted for.
Hobby yesterday evening over Coney plus female Cuckoo eating Drinker caterpillars plus 2+ male Cuckoos.
Return dates for Spot Fly over the past 5 years - the second week in May generally being the norm:
Spotted Flycatcher 12/05/12, 31/05/13, 19/05/14, 13/05/15, 12/05/16
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