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Old Tuesday 17th May 2005, 22:03   #1
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Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Doncaster, UK
Posts: 5,432
My Outback 2005 / 13

Sunday morning (15th May) availed us the chance to take advantage of the decent weather, and see if the birdies would be more visible in calmer conditions.

The answer was a resounding "YES!" with the day total reaching 40 for the first time. In addition, many species were well repesented - probably much moreso than my numbers will suggest... usual excuses apply!

Stepping out the front door, the first id of the morning was a small flypast of House Martins. I have to be honest and say that the overall House Martin numbers are very disappointing again. This will be our fourth summer in our new house, and the first year there were literally dozens and dozens... but the second year the numbers were much lower, and last year was even more disappointing - something I blamed on the hot weather, rightly or wrongly. This year, as already intimated, it ain't looking great.

So what's the difference? Well, we moved into a brand new house, so maybe the Martins were hear first, and our first summer was their first experience of the new builds in their territory? Perhaps they have moved on elsewhere, but to where, who knows.

If the houses are the cause of their absence for whatever reason, then this is surely A Bad Thing!!! :(

Anyway, back to Sunday...

Loads of Skylarks in evidence... too many for me to keep and accurate track of!

A good number of woodland birds, and a healthy selection of Warblers, again likely to be undercounted by yours truly.

The duckies and the cooties were still very much doing the family bit - some of the Mallard chicks being somewhat larger, the 7 baby Coots still having the appearance of scraggy balls of fluff!

The pair of Tufted Ducks from last time, has become 3, two males one female. Perhaps another missus is less bold. And Mrs. Swan is still tightly wrapped on her nest, the fella taking an apparent rest from his duties at the other end of the pond, stretching his wings on the island.

So all in all, really enjoyable... loads seen, although nothing in itself spectacular, but nonetheless we managed to pick the first outback House Sparrow of 2005.

No Cuckoo, it should be said, but we've heard it/them from the garden at numerous other times.

Plain text = Outback day tick
Bold text = Outback year tick
(Number in brackets is highest number of individuals identified at one time)

Grey Partridge (Perdix perdix) : 2 (2)
Pheasant (Phasianus colchicus) : 1 (1)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) : 2 (2)
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) : 21 (16)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula) : 3 (3)
Greater Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major) : 1 (1)
Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis) : 3 (1)
Swift (Apus apus) : 7 (3)
Woodpigeon (Columba palumbus) : 11 (2)
Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) : 2 (2)
Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) : 2 (1)
Coot (Fulica atra) : 13 (7)
Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) : 1 (1)
Buzzard (Buteo buteo) : 1 (1)
Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus) : 2 (1)
Little Grebe (Tachybaptus ruficollis) : 1 (1)
Magpie (Pica pica) : 7 (2)
Jackdaw (Corvus monedula) : 6 (3)
Carrion Crow (Corvus corone) : 3 (1)
Blackbird (Turdus merula) : 5 (1)
Mistle Thrush (Turdus viscivorus) : 2 (1)
Robin (Erithacus rubecula) : 2 (1)
Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) : 5 (5)
Nuthatch (Sitta europaea) : 3 (1)
Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes) : 8 (1)
Great Tit (Parus major) : 2 (1)
Blue Tit (Parus caeruleus) : 5 (1)
Swallow (Hirundo rustica) : 2 (2)
House Martin (Delichon urbicum) : 4 (4)
Willow Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus) : 4 (1)
Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita) : 4 (1)
Whitethroat (Sylvia communis) : 5 (1)
Skylark (Alauda arvensis) : 15 (3)
House Sparrow (Passer domesticus) : 1 (1)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba) : 5 (2)
Meadow Pipit (Anthus pratensis) : 1 (1)
Dunnock (Prunella modularis) : 1 (1)
Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) : 5 (2)
Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) : 6 (4)
Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella) : 3 (1)
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