Wednesday, 30 October 2013


I spent the majority of the session scouring the bushes at the north end of the patch. 5 Blackcap, 5 Whitethroat, a single Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Willow Warbler and 8+ Chiffchaff. Otherwhys, it was fairly standard in the species present, so i moved onto the area of grazing land, where i quickly found 15 Lapwing. However, from here i also had a vismig session, where i had a TREE PIPIT fly over calling, heading south at 8:50am. Large numbers of Swallow were also on the move, with over 500 counted before heading home. 40 'Alba' Wagtail also flew over, as did 3 Bullfinch.

The strangest sighting however was that of a Kingfisher, not content with feeding along the river, which decided it wanted to be a Spotted Flycatcher and sit on a Hawthorn in the middle of a paddock

Monday, 28 October 2013

Catching up (AGAIN!)

As i'm sure you have all come to expect of the blog over the last few months, it has become fairly inactive. Much of my time has been fairly full recently and a recent change in personal circumstance has left me with very little motivation to do anything, particularly blog orientated work. I appologise for the complete lack of posting, and i will try to create a regular routine again.

A day out around Cannock chase was rewarded with 5 Spotted Flycatcher around the car park.

We then moved onto Blithfield Reservior, where i luckily stumbled across a juvenile BLACK TERN as it hawked over the water to the north of the causeway. A further exploration of the area produced, Little Egret, 5 Ringed Plover, a juvenile Ruff, 5 Yellow Wagtail and a single Tree Sparrow. Aside from the Black Tern, my other personal highlight was seeing my first Clouded Yellow butterfly.

6 Willow warbler (4 juv) were nice to find on the patch.

Later that morning, i headed to Grimley Camp lane pits, where 3 Little Egret, 6 Ringed Plover and 4 Yellow Wagtail were showing.

Following a period of work, i then headed to Upton Warren for the Roost, where a single LRP was 'hanging on', Ringed Plover (Ad and Juv), Dunlin,7 Green Sand and 2 Ruff.

The only passerine of note was a Lesser Whitethroat.

The following night, i again dropped into Upton Warren for the roost, the LRP and the 2 Ringed PLover remained, as did the Dunlin but Green Sandpiper numbers had increased to 8. A GOLDEN PLOVER flew north over calling which was a nice addition to the list. 2 1st winter Common Gulls roosted with 1000c BHG. The Lesser Whitethroat also remained.

A early morning vismig session was very quiet, a single Common Gull was seen briefly and a Lesser Whitethroat was found.

For the last time of the weekend, we dropped into Upton Warren as they were having somewhat of a wader fest. The highlight goes to a flock of 6 RUFF, but vismig in action was shown by 2 juvenile Dunlin which dropped in.


Friday, 4 October 2013

Catch Ups

A drop into Upton Warren was rewarded with a juvenile ARCTIC TERN, a juvenile RUFF, 5 Curlew, 2 Common Sand and 7 Green Sand, a nice array!

Back to patch, and it was equally rewarding as the last visit, with 2 Lesser Whitethroat, a Garden Warbler, Blackcap and 3 Whitethroat found. Warblers were certainly moving! A adult HOBBY was found hawking over Lickhill farm briefly following migrating Swallows.

Later the same day i dropped into Eyemore Wood, which, aside from 5 Marsh Tit and 30 Goldcrest there was little of note birdwise. However, my first Painted Lady butterfly was found feeding on Buddlia.

Moving onto Shenstone, i saw my 2nd HOBBY of the day, this time a Juvenile while looking (and failing may i add) to find Clouded Yellow butterfly.

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Patch Migrants

A momentous discovery in patch terms, i was very happy to find an adult SPOTTED FLYCATCHER flycatching off one of the hedges wedged between Lickhill and the riverside fields, a likely location for migrants on patch. I enjoyed a good period watching it, being my first patch SpotFly for around 5 years! The last record being of a juvenile around the same time of year.

However, been stationary at this one spot paid extra dividends when not long after the discovery of the Flycatcher i spotted a large raptor flying up from the south, towards me. As it got closer the long winged look got me immediately interested, and as it circled to the right flicked its wing up, revealing a long and forked tail.


Not the patch rarity that is SpotFly, but a great bird to see, and one i always love to see on patch, usually on a yearly basis. I got a few minutes viewing before it circled off, and flew back south.

It was also great to catch up with a stunning singing Marsh Tit at a regular patch area, and i managed to get some stunning views as it fed around the Willows.

 15 Mandarins were still present along the river, of which 7 were drakes of varying ages (Juvenile males can be separated from females).

(One of the juvenile drake Mandarin Ducks)

 An impressive 25+ Chiffchaff were counted, but only 2 Willow Warbler and a single Whitethroat.