Wednesday, 18 March 2020

Damp birding


Limited opportunities for personal birding but a few bits and pieces seen in the county today despite a rather damp second half of the day...

A Chiffchaff in our Hanging Houghton garden and some noisy Ravens nearby were pleasurable sounds and Eleanor's foray in to the Brampton Valley below this village yielded a Barn Owl this morning and two north-bound vocal Curlews this afternoon. Another Barn Owl was hunting between Holcot village and the A43.

A quick check of the Sailing Club grounds at Pitsford Reservoir this evening provided an excellent view of a hunting Weasel as it sought high and low for a vole which it could obviously smell. The vole broke cover and hid in some waterside detritus but to no avail as the Weasel tracked it down by scent and dispatched it and ran off with it. A sad end for the vole which obviously knew it was being hunted; when you are that small you are a tasty morsel for a broad range of predators. Ten Sand Martins were noted flying around the Pintail Bay.

Summer Leys was still home to the Knot this morning but the count went up to five birds, albeit it sounds like they became elusive later. Also a Redshank, nine Snipe, four Oystercatchers and a Great White Egret were on the reserve today. Other birds for the Nene Valley included an Osprey at Thrapston Pits, perched on a pylon next to Elinor Lake, and the Dark-bellied Brent Goose was still at Clifford Hill Pits together with a Great White Egret and over a hundred Golden Plovers.


Neil M

Common Buzzard
courtesy of John Tilly,

Sparrowhawk courtesy
of Robin Gossage.

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