Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Sunday 16th September

Fishing Heron (c) Bark

Wheatear by the Cattle Pen (c) Paul Greenaway

Photogenic Kingfisher (c) Mike Kosniowski

Just a brief report this weekend as I only managed a short visit on Sunday.
A massive change over the last two weeks. Autumn is nearly upon us and the hedgerows and reedbeds are really showing it with fading colours and scruffy vegetation. The damp and misty weather also highlighted the shift in the seasons. There are still good numbers of Whinchats to be found on the reserve, along with occasional Wheatears. Small passerines are feeding in mixed parties in the hedgerows and in one such group I saw Whitethroat, Willow/chiff, Blackcap and three Tit species. Water Rail is being seen frequently at the first screen and both adult and juvenile were present on Sunday. Green Sand is also frequently on show here. Kingfishers are regularly using the perches out from the screens and giving photographers great views. Several flocks of snipe were seen flying over the reedbed and Greenaways. Groups of hirundines were moving through and all three common species were seen, although only two Sand Martins.
Another sign and sight of Autumn is the way that our resident Jays become much more obvious. They are frequently seen and heard while foraging for acorns and caching them in the fields. There was no sign of either the Marsh harrier or the Merlin that had been seen on Wednesday. The Merlin tends to overlap with the Hobby by two or three weeks, so despite the current abundance of dragonflies they will soon be off.
Still no Stonechats but I am still hopeful.

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