Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Back home to roost


Yesterday morning saw Neil H and I depart from Skokholm after an early morning ringing session which resulted in the capture and release of seven Manx Shearwaters and a Jackdaw.  The boat trip back was pleasant, the boat influenced with a heavy swell but we were bathed in lovely sunshine to top up our suntans.  An adult Mediterranean Gull and a flock of Kittiwakes were good to see; a distant feeding flock of Gannets gathered over a small pod of Common Dolphins.

It was then a slow drive back along the A40 through Wales, the occasional Red Kite dotting the horizon.  A short break at Symonds Yat in Gloucestershire was again good with several species of raptor on show including a Hobby and a juvenile Peregrine with prey.

A quick scan over some farmland near Kelmarsh yielded a single Clouded Yellow butterfly and then it was time for some supper at Hanging Houghton.

Eleanor in the meantime continued her scouring of the local area and at Harrington Airfield in the afternoon located a Marsh Harrier which was hunting fields west of the concrete track at about 5.15pm, a Red Kite, 2 Ravens and a Turtle Dove.

This morning we both (EKMcM and me) went up to Harrington Airfield but the heat haze affected scanning across the fields.  Raptors included many Common Buzzards, a Red Kite and a distant raptor that may have been a Marsh Harrier.  However the best bird was an Osprey which slowly moved over the area at 10.25am, heading off towards Pitsford Res.  A Hobby was dramatically hunting Swallows here at Hanging Houghton at 12 noon.


Neil M

Juvenile Common Buzzard
Symonds Yat

Juvenile Kestrel
on straw bales
Harrington Airfield
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