Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Sunset on the Marsh

Cold and bright, 0°, very light SSW.

Benson recorded the lowest overnight temperature in the UK on Monday night of -9° and the second lowest last night of -6° so it is pretty chilly out there.

A cold late afternoon at Cholsey marsh for the roost. 60+ Corn Bunting in and a similar number of Meadow Pipit.

Lots of Fieldfare and Redwing around and 2 Chiffchaff noted, 1 on the marsh and another over the other side of the river, both with Tit flocks.

A Little Grebe on the river along with several Black-headed Gull and a few Cormorant up and down the river.

3 Water Rail and a couple of Common Snipe on the marsh.

A distant Sparrowhawk observing the roost this evening but flew of east after about 5 minutes.

 A couple of photos by Loren this morning of the 2 Moorhen that visit the garden. Trying to decide whether to come in, then going for it.

The Lime Tree in the meadow in the morning frost.

Monday, 28 November 2016

Cold & Quiet

Sunny but chilly, 7°, light E.

A little quieter out at Lollingdon today, still plenty of Fieldfare and Redwing around plus a good Starling flock but most of the buntings appear to have moved elsewhere. Just a few Yellowhammer, Reed Bunting and Corn Bunting out there.

A small flock of c50 Meadow Pipit in one of the fields and a flock of c80 Linnet still around on the hill and at least 1 Bullfinch present.

Roe Deer also seen and a Hedgehog still feeding in the garden.

Sunday, 27 November 2016

November Garden

A few visitors to the garden recently.

The Tawny Owls have been very active in and around the garden recently with up to 3 present and a Little Owl has been heard nearby.

Several times a day a tit flock passes through the garden with Great Tit, Blue Tit, Long-tailed Tit and 2 Nuthatch and a Treecreeper invariably with them.

Chaffinch and Greenfinch are regular visitors and the odd Goldfinch.

The pair of Carrion Crow that visit the garden frequently still have their single offspring accompanying them, whereas last year the young bird disappeared in early October.

The only thrush in the garden so far have been Blackbird although I’ve heard Fieldfare and Redwing passing overhead and a couple of Song Thrush and Mistle Thrush in the meadow.

Other species in the garden recently have been MallardMoorhen, Wood Pigeon, Stock Dove, Collared Dove, Great-spotted Woodpecker, Pied Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Wren, Dunnock, Robin, Goldcrest and Magpie.

Species seen over or in the meadow regularly, Grey Heron, Buzzard, Red Kite, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Black-headed Gull, Lesser Blackback Gull, Green Woodpecker, Kingfisher, Skylark, Meadow Pipit, Rook and Jackdaw.

The above photo is the right way up

Merlin & Golden Plover

A Merlin seen out at Lollingdon on Friday morning and c200 Golden Plover on a field near Cholsey Marsh this morning.

Also a lot of Thrushes around Cholsey Marsh, Fieldfare, Redwing and several "continental" Song Thrush.

(per Tony Williams).

Friday, 25 November 2016


A sunny day, 8°, light to breezy NE.

Much of the same out at Lollingdon today with Fieldfare everywhere. Just about every bush with berries on had Fieldfare feasting on them, also Redwing, Blackbird, Song Thrush and a couple of Mistle Thrush.

A mixed flock of Finch and Bunting present with mainly Linnet and in addition good numbers of Chaffinch, Yellowhammer and Reed Bunting.

2 Bullfinch also present on the wooded side of the hill and a Grey Wagtail down near the pond.

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Marsh & Meadow

Cloudy, 8°, getting misty and a breezy NE.

The marsh roost slightly up on last week with c60 Corn Bunting in this evening and Meadow Pipit down to around 40.

3 Yellowhammer also in and c10 Reed Bunting present.

Lots of Fieldfare and Redwing flying over in all directions, 2 Mistle Thrush over and a Song Thrush singing on the marsh.

A Cetti’s Warbler and a Chiffchaff close to Ferry road and at least a couple of Bullfinch nearby.

7 Common Snipe flew off the reserve and headed across the river and approx. 80 Lapwing and c100 Golden Plover overhead.

2 Mute Swan flew in and settled on the river and 2 Egyptian Geese flew upstream.

At dusk there were 500+ Corvids (Rook and Jackdaw, maybe more but view restricted) in the air upstream and towards North Stoke presumably going to roost in that area and making a whole lot of noise.

Buzzard, Kestrel, Grey Heron, Cormorant, Kingfisher, Great-spotted Woodpecker and 2+ Siskin noted.

2 Nuthatch in the garden again today.

News from Tony Rayner.

Took a turn around our meadow today, a huge flock of Linnet, at least 100 and probably many more. These attracted to the weedy field beyond. A number (4+) of Skylark flying around - also attracted to the weedy fields.

At least 10 Blackbird a singing Song Thrush and at least 10 Fieldfare.

Two male Blackcap in our central hedge. Also our first Greenfinch for over a month.

A Buzzard seems to be resident on the site which may explain the current absence of Red Kite. (Suspect someone is feeding them elsewhere).

In the weedy field there were 3 Roe Deer.

Tuesday, 22 November 2016


Cloudy with a little light rain, 8°, breezy SSW.

A very soggy walk out to Lollingdon today after 2 days of rain, the streams are running high and a lot of flooding in the fields.

Very much of the same out there today, still plenty of Fieldfare and Redwing around and Yellowhammer, Reed Bunting and Corn Bunting present.

A lone Raven flew east over the hill.

Mammals: Roe Deer, also a Hedgehog still active in the garden, he (I’m assuming it’s a boar) is a large one and should have no trouble surviving the winter and we believe he will hibernate somewhere in the garden.

Friday, 18 November 2016

Buntings, Thrushes and a Merlin

A generally colder and cloudy day with intermittent sunshine, 6°, light SSW.

The first Merlin (♀) of this winter on the hill today, flew from a post, along the track and flipped over a hedge not to be seen again.

Still plenty of Fieldfare, Redwing and Starling around, 50+ Yellowhammer, 20+ Reed Bunting, 2 Bullfinch, 2 Jay and a Goldcrest.

Another flock of Buntings were in a Maize crop feeding on the seed heads and difficult to get a count but between 30-40 birds. Mainly Reed Bunting here.

A few Pied Wagtail and a flock of c80 Meadow Pipit in fields closer to Cholsey village.

Nuthatch and Treecreeper in the garden this week.

Mammals: Roe Deer.

Some of the Reed Bunting


Wednesday, 16 November 2016

A quiet roost

Overcast, rain showers, 12° and a blustery WSW wind.

A fairly quiet marsh this evening with c40 Corn Bunting and c80 Meadow Pipit coming into the roost. The roost should start to grow as the colder weather progresses.

2 Chiffchaff roaming around with some Tit flocks, a couple of Bullfinch in the Blackthorn and a few Fieldfare and Redwing around.

A Cormorant flew down river and a Kingfisher and a Grey Heron present.

Approx. 200 Lapwing flew north and appeared to come down on a field between Cholsey Meadows and Bow Bridge.

Some of the Lapwing flock from a distance.

Monday, 14 November 2016

Similar to last week

Overcast with light rain showers, 12°, light WSW.

Another samey day with hundreds of Fieldfare out at Lollingdon and their chattering could be heard affair distance away. Approx. 100 Redwing, 250+ Starling, 20+ Song Thrush and 4 Mistle Thrush all feeding in and around the Lollingdon area.

20+ Yellowhammer, 5 Reed Bunting, 3 Corn Bunting and a handful of Meadow Pipit and Pied Wagtail.

An increase noted in the number of Robin today with twice as many noted than of recently.

Several Corn Bunting coming into the roost at Cholsey Marsh but no count done yet.

Mammals: Roe Deer.

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Watlington Hare coursing!

Reports of criminal damage to fields and crops near Watlington. Also possible hare coursing. Described as silver Subaru forester, registration BU52 P**. Any sightings or information to Thames valley Police quoting urn 898 13/11/16.

Friday, 11 November 2016

A bit samey!

A frosty start then sunshine, 10°, very light SSE.

A week with not much change, still lots of Thrushes around Lollingdon, the majority being Fieldfare and plenty of Redwing.

20+ Song Thrush also today and several Mistle Thrush.

Buntings also still prominent with Yellowhammer, Reed Bunting and a few Corn Bunting present.

A few Pied Wagtail and Meadow Pipit feeding in the area.

The sunshine was warm enough to bring out a few insects with 3 Common Darter Dragonfly and 2 Red Admiral Butterfly.

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Little change

Cloudy with a few sunny spells and rain showers, 8°, breezy NW.

A cold and breezy day with little change this week.

Still plenty of Fieldfare and Redwing feeding on the Hawthorns and fields, also 100+ Starling, c30 Yellowhammer and several Reed Bunting.

Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Chaffinch and Skylark also noted low double figures and 2 Goldcrest on the hill.

A flock of 120+ Black-headed Gull flew over in some haste suggesting something had spooked them?

Black-headed Gull

Monday, 7 November 2016

Winter taking a hold

Sunny spells, 8°, fresh N.

Colder than of late and Thrushes still dominating the avian scene out at Lollingdon.

Several hundred, mainly Fieldfare scattered around and somewhere in the region of 100 Redwing in several small flocks.

Relatively quiet elsewhere except for a stretch of hedgerow that was very busy.

As well as a few thrushes there was a Brambling, c10 Chaffinch, 2 Goldfinch, 5 Starling, 12 Yellowhammer and 3 Reed Bunting. 15 species in all.

At least 2 Goldcrest in the Bullshole area.

A Grey Wagtail in the garden over the weekend and today.

Mammals: Roe Deer.

Friday, 4 November 2016

Thrushes centre stage again

Rain, 12°, light WNW.

A rather soggy trip out to Lollingdon today with almost constant rain.

Hundreds of winter thrushes around with up to a 1000 birds scattered around in flocks feeding in fields and hedgerows both Fieldfare and Redwing, and 2 Mistle Thrush.

6 Corn Bunting, c30 Yellowhammer and 10+ Reed Bunting, also 2 Goldcrest.

Mammals: Roe Deer.