Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Sunday and Monday 25th and 26th August

Yellow Wagtail (c) Bark

Lined up on the reed screening (c) Bark

Lots of plumage variation (c) Bark

Whinchats and Wheatear at Noke in the gloom (c) Bark

Stalking Egret (c) Bark

The Otmoor Flock minus one ! (c) Bark

Lesser Whitethroat (c) Bark

Stunning Spot Fly Carpark Field (c) Pete Styles

The same bird before it flew (c) Pete Styles

Male Redstart (c) Pat Galka

Showing how it got its name (c) Pat Galka
 There were plenty of birds to be seen on the moor this weekend, once the early morning greyness and chill had lifted. It was very gratifying to hear that last weeks predicted Whinchats had turned up only a day after I wrote about them. The birds on Tuesday were out on the MOD land by the Pill, this weekend there were two by the farm at Noke and another juvenile along the path to the first screen on Monday. The birds at Noke were keeping company with a juvenile Wheatear, the first on the reserve this Autumn. Spotted Flycatchers have been seen again regularly, both off the reserve and in the carpark field, hunting from the wires. Redstarts too are still present, with at least three on Monday.
There is a flock of at least fifty Yellow Wagtails feeding around the feet of the cattle on Ashgrave. There are both adults and juveniles and most are in various stages of moult and rather varied plumages. They showed particularly well when the cows were feeding just below the hide on Sunday and they all flushed up onto the roof and the screening when a raptor flew over, allowing great photo-opportunities. There are a resident party of seven Little Egrets still finding food in the diminishing water in front of the hide, at least thirty eclipse Teal were there and a couple of Green Sandpipers came and went, as is their wont. Turtle Doves are still present and a pair of adults and a juvenile have been seen feeding in an Oddington garden. They may or may not be the breeders from the reserve.
There are now certainly two and possibly three Marsh Harriers on the moor. One of the individuals looked significantly different to the one photographed last week by T.S.. A Peregrine put in a brief appearance, three Hobbies were hunting actively along the northern edge of Greenaways all Monday morning and a Sparrowhawk passed over the reedbed.
At least seven Wigeon were on the northern lagoon on Monday, they may be the birds that failed to head north in the spring rather than the vanguard of the returning winter migrants.
When the sun shines there are plenty of butterflies to be seen and the relative abundance of the Brown Hairstreaks is attracting enthusiasts from considerable distances.

No comments:

Post a Comment