Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Settling down!

Sunny, 20º, light WSW.

The past few days have been rather steady, with a change for the better weather wise. Several species seen carrying nesting material, i.e. Linnets and food i.e. Whitethroats etc.

Lollingdon Hill has been quiet, just the local breeding species around and Cholsey Marsh much the same. 2 adult Black-headed Gulls flew downriver the other day which is a scarcity at this time of year.

Just an observation but Whitethroat numbers appear to be down on last year with an estimated 25% drop!

Spring so far has been relatively cold and wet and breeding birds appear to have suffered, some will obviously attempt breeding again but some may not!

Sunday 17th June saw the 2nd “Agatha Christie Trail” walk (of which I help out on). 62 visitors joined the walk from Wallingford Museum to Cholsey Church via the footpath along the “Bunk Line”, with Judy Dewey and Tony Rayner talking about Agatha Christie and local archaeology on the way.

There is a section at the museum dedicated to Agatha Christie and the walk takes in Winterbrook House (Cholsey) where she lived until 1976 and Cholsey Church where she is buried.

In addition, there are several Bronze and Iron Age sites along the route that are still to be fully investigated.

A few Yellow Wagtail heard and several Linnet, Whitethroat and Blackcap seen.

From Cholsey Church, we made for Cholsey railway station where we took the train (An old steam engine pulling 2 coaches) back to Wallingford along the heritage “Bunk Line”.

Recent activity in the garden has seen 3 different Great-spotted Woodpeckers (, and a young ), also young of Robin, Dunnock, Song Thrush, Blackbird, Blue and Great Tit,House Sparrow, Chaffinch and Greenfinch and the Moorhen along the brook has at least 3 young, so at least some have managed to breed and some young survive albeit lower numbers.

2 Stock Doves still visiting the garden and 10 Jackdaws, which included several young, seen feeding next to the garden this morning by a neighbour.

Only one House Martins nest occupied this year at Marymead, several House Sparrows in the area of the front garden and 2 Goldcrests seen, 10+ Red Kites, and 2 Buzzards soaring over the village today.

Meadow Brown butterflies appearing now.

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