Tuesday, 14 April 2015

'Tis the nesting season


Plenty of migrants about today, even if the morning started off cool and dull.

The owl boxes were checked at Pitsford Reservoir today, and of the three pairs of Tawny Owls initially utilising the nest-boxes only one pair remain with three eggs ready to hatch. Dave Francis and Lynne Barnett checked the boxes today and found Grey Squirrels again in most of them. The squirrels had ousted two of the female Tawnies and their abandoned eggs remained in the nest-boxes. It seems that the Grey Squirrels are seriously affecting the potential breeding success of our most common owl. However a pair of Stock Doves have managed to hatch and rear two youngsters almost to the fledgling stage in one of the nest-boxes already.

Eleanor visited Harrington Airfield first this morning and espied a male Ring Ouzel at the shooting wall just off the concrete track. Two Wheatears were also present plus 20 Golden Plovers and a pair of Grey Partridge. A female Merlin was hunting across the top fields and summer migrants included Yellow Wagtails and Willow Warblers.

An Osprey was noted flying towards Pitsford Reservoir from Brixworth at about 2pm and Blueberry Farm again hosted two hunting Barn Owls this evening.


Neil M

Tawny Owl clutch
Pitsford Reservoir
courtesy of Lynne Barnett

Open-fronted nest-box
in ivy as suitable for birds
such as the Robin...

...and a clutch of Robin eggs
to prove it!
Pictures courtesy of Chris Payne

Hercules transport aircraft
over Blueberry Farm, Maidwell
Courtesy of Eleanor McMahon

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