Sunday, 6 January 2013

SP54 Short Day Count etc


Another day where we split forces, with me completing another BOS Short Day Count and Eleanor staying local to NN6.

This morning the Great White Egret was again at Pitsford Res, this time in bushes between the Holcot and Walgrave bays.  A Lesser Spotted Woodpecker was reportedly within a tit flock near to the rookery in the Walgrave Bay.  A 'redhead' Smew was north of the causeway and the Slavonian Grebe was reported south of the causeway again.

This afternoon there were 12 Bramblings feeding on the seed at Harrington Airfield, by the concrete track entrance off the Draughton Road.  An adult female Peregrine appeared over the old airstrip and chased Woodpigeons feeding on the fields.  She was shadowed by the female Merlin which subsequently chased the passerines displaced by the larger falcon, both raptors disappearing towards Short Wood, the Merlin possibly successful in catching a small bird.

In the meantime I spent the day in SP54 which is in the south west of the county.  The first hour of daylight yielded 42 species, with just another 23 species being added before 4pm.  A Kingfisher was noted in the mist at Thenford as were 6 Siskins.  Winter thrushes dominated the day again with big numbers in particular of Redwing feeding on the wet fields.  Nuthatches and Marsh Tits seemed to be present at most sites.  Two Grey Wagtails were at Middleton Cheney and Tree Sparrows and about 10 Siskins were at the Farthinghoe LNR.  A Woodcock was flushed at Thorpe Mandeville. 

The last few hours of the birding day was spent around the Edgcote/Trafford Bridge area where scarcer birds included a pair of Raven, 2 Snipe, another Kingfisher, a pair of Goosander, ca10 Siskins, a Lesser Redpoll and the final new addition of the day, an elusive Willow Tit.


Neil M
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