Wednesday, 20 May 2020

Cuckoos, owls, Grasshopper Warblers and baby birds!


Yesterday evening (Tuesday) and Kenny Cramer tried his luck at continuing his Cuckoo ringing project at Linford Lakes and successfully caught his second bird within a week.

Eric's expedition on the Titchmarsh Reserve yesterday provided two Hobbies, three Cuckoos and the now standard breeding birds on site which includes excellent numbers of all-sorted warblers.

Sad news that the Barn Owl taken into care after being found in Scaldwell village last week didn't make it and died, but the good news is that another bird was seen flying around the village at the week-end. A adult Tawny Owl was dead alongside the A508 south of Maidwell today.

Up to two or three 'reeling' Grasshopper Warblers have been present at Harrington Airfield this spring and there were still two this morning. None of these individuals have been easy to spot but Pete Gilbert set about trying to see one of these birds and capturing a digital image- well done Pete!

Stanwick Pits this morning (Wednesday) provided sightings of two Cattle Egrets and a Curlew and two Ospreys were over the A5199 near Hollowell this afternoon. The drake Mandarin Duck was north of the causeway at Pitsford Reservoir this afternoon and was feeling amorous towards, of all things, a Greylag Goose! A Turtle Dove was heard 'purring' at a site in the county today.

Birds recently fledged during the last couple of days include Long-tailed Tit, Goldfinch and Starling and for those researchers completing nestbox surveys, this is the time to be ringing the nestlings of Great and Blue Tits and other species too. Some Swallows in the county have young in the nest already (it feels like they've only just arrived)!

Just a reminder that there will be some bird ringing at Harrington Airfield tomorrow (Thursday) which ensures that there will be access restrictions on the old airstrip and bunkers. The concrete track and footpaths remain unaffected.


Neil M

Cuckoo courtesy of
Kenny Cramer.

Skulking Grasshopper Warbler at
Harrington Airfield courtesy
of Pete Gilbert.

Fledgling Blackbird
courtesy of Cathy Ryden.

Nestling Great Tits
courtesy of Chris Payne.

Stock Dove squabs
courtesy of Chris Payne.
They definitely look much
prettier when they grow up!

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