Kestrel by the hide
Wren in the hedge
Two male bullfinchesThe windy conditions meant that many birds were hunkered down in the bushes or hurtling past at great speed. Grey, misty starts gave way to bright blue skies and the last autumn leaves glowed brightly in the hedges.
On Sunday morning the first bird we saw was the female Hen Harrier, it flew from car park field across into the Closes where it stayed for at least half an hour before flying up the hill towards Beckley. Buzzards, Kites and Kestrels were common. There were large flocks of winter thrushes out on the fields or flying over with Fieldfares outnumbering Redwings by about ten to one. There are still large quantities of berries in the hedgerows and I assume the mild weather has meant that there is more to forage out on the open fields than to tuck into the hips, haws and sloes. The regular small flock of Bullfinches have taken up residence in the hedgerow that runs alongside the path to the second screen and flew ahead of us piping quietly as we walked. They were feeding on dried up blackberries and rose hips. There seems to be a lot Wrens buzzing around the bushes and chasing each other around, is this early courtship activity?
On Saturday we saw at least four Ravens and heard Raven again on Sunday. We heard and saw several parties of Golden plover on both days. The injured Lapwing that has been in front of the first screen since at least Wednesday continues to survive although it certainly looks as though its wing is either broken or dislocated, I don’t hold out much hope for it still being there next weekend.
Rainbow over the reedbed all pictures(c) Peter Barker