Friday, 7 October 2016

A good day on the Hill

Overcast with light rain showers, 14°, light ENE.

A different day today out at Lollingdon with 5 hours birding around the area.

The highlight of today was a flyover Woodlark. I noticed a Lark fly over the hill that appeared a little dumpier and shorter tailed than the Skylarks that had been flying over. Fortunately it called a few times as it went over with its characteristic call that confirmed its ID.

Am not aware of any Cholsey records of this species since the 60’s so quite a rarity in these parts and only my 2nd in Oxfordshire.

Anyway back to the nitty gritty: A couple of Chiffchaff and Redwing by the millennium wood/Bullshole area.

Halfway out to Lollingdon there was a Common Redstart along the hedge by the pylon. Also 60+ Pied Wagtail, 6 Yellowhammer and c100 gulls, Lesser Blackback and Black-headed Gull in the fields.

As I got to Lollingdon there was a mixed flock of c40 Redwing, 20, Song Thrush and up to 40 Blackbird. In fact there seemed to be an increase in Song Thrush and Blackbird numbers around Lollingdon generally today with both the latter on the hill and in surrounding hedgerows.

Once on the hill there were birds moving most of the time with approx. 150 Swallow, 42 Skylark, 30 Corn Bunting and a lot of Meadow Pipit and of course the Woodlark.

On and around the hill there were approx. 80 Pied Wagtail and a good number of Meadow Pipit feeding in the fields along with a few hundred Lesser Blackback and Black-headed Gull, c20 Yellowhammer, 2 Reed Bunting, 5 Jay, a Mistle Thrush and 6 Chiffchaff.

A flock of 12 Long-tailed Tit and a Goldcrest initially feeding in the Hawthorns on the hill took a brief 200 metre flight to a hedge adjacent to the track that leads to a farm and whilst watching these I noted a Wheatear feeding further along the track.

There was also a standoff between a Magpie and a Sparrowhawk on the hill with both taking turns in chasing each other, eventually the Sparrowhawk flew off.

Another Tit flock down by the paddocks had at least 2 Goldcrest with them.

The Redstart was still present on the way back.

Dragonflies: 1 Common Darter and no butterflies today.

Got chased by this lot today.....they are normally more placid but today!

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