Its been a long, and busy couple of weeks. Just after I left you at my last post I met up with Gary, Rowlands Gill Birder, SH and Phil had found a Marsh Warbler the previous night, a possible life tick for both of us so an early start was in order, 06:45am to be exact. Walking down to the Oddie hide, Sedge Warbler, and Reed Warbler were keeping us sharp, but no Marsh, after scanning the main pool we picked up something different, further investigation and a life tick was found, Marsh Warbler. The song of this bird was fascinating. After appreciation its call we headed off, up to East Chevington, highlights included 4 Little Gull, a female Marsh Harrier and two hunting Barn Owl. Cresswell was visited on the way back, although there wasn't a great amount about. To finish the morning off I took Gary on a tour of the patch, which I think he was impressed by.
Next a camping trip in Cumbria, roughing it for the weekend, although not a birding trip, it produced some good birds and great records.Most impressively a immature female Goshawk.
My sister and I visited Holywell Pond on the 19/06. Species noted included 9 Little Grebe + 2 young, 3 Grey Heron, pair of Gadwall, 7 Coot, Mute Swan, 4 Tufted, 3 Mallard, and a large number of hirundines.
Sunday night I joined Tom Tams, and Tim Sexton Moth Trapping at Holywell, have a look at Tim's blog for the full species list.
Monday and Tuesday I was down at Holywell, both the pond, and roaming the Deleval Estate. A Barn Owl hunting over East fields from the members hide was a treat, I love seeing these birds on patch and successfully breeding. A male Bullfinch was also seen on Sunday morning near to the feeding station at the first bridge. Its was nice to see the Kestrels were also successful in raising a brood.
Later on the same day I headed towards the Village Pond, and Silverlink Park for a wander. Lots of dragonflies about, I'll need to get my finger out and brush up on my identification skills. Some time was spent watching the local House Sparrows agilely hunting flies over the water occasionally missing and taking the plunge. There was a number of Common Blue Butterflies about. I bumped into Davy T at one of the small ponds, he shed some light on the Dragonfly species in the area.
I've eventually managed to begin the training process of bird ringing, something I've wanting to get involved with for a while now, so far I've been out twice and learnt a lot, but the surface has just been scratched, I look forward to learning more.
If you follow Brian, Killy Birders blog, you may have seen his mention on a project I'm running in the near future. The project he's referring to is a scouting program which I have planned with the aim of the Scouts gaining their Scout Naturalist Badge. This will be taking place at Holywell on Saturday 3rd July, the hides will be busy, so if a relaxing day is planned, I would advise avoiding Holywell. Scouts which gain this badge will be some of the first in the district. Oh, there is a twist on the day, an invented bird, the Long-legged Chameleon Finch, a large pigeon sized, flightless bird. Only five in the area, so if you happen to be wandering Holywell on the 3rd, and see a yellow bird shaped object please do not approach, as they are very wary and disturbance may cause a failed breeding attempt. Although they could provide a easy life tick.
Some of you may have noticed a new blog in my list, The Journal of a Wildlife Photographer, by Steven Williams, a colleague and friend from University, its already shaping up to be a great blog, worth a look.