Recording Area Annual Totals

93 Species so far in 2011 - January 2011 72 by March 21st - Common Chiffchaff 74 by March 28th - Wheatear & Meadow Pipit both added; 77 by April 5th 108 species were recorded in 2010; 92 by 4 September; 93 by 22 November

Friday, 20 March 2009

FRIDAY 20 MARCH

Another gorgeous day in the Chilterns with temperatures (after a frosty start) once again climbing to a peak of 15 degrees C. Clear blue skies dominate, with warm sunshine and a light easterly breeze.

CHESS RIVER VALLEY

A single LITTLE EGRET remains.

CHAFFINCH HOUSE, LITTLE CHALFONT

A female SISKIN visited the Nyger feeder for over 30 minutes this morning, whilst a RED KITE circled overhead at 1215 hours.

There was much Common Blackbird activity in the garden, with 5 birds present at one stage

RUDDY HELL - BLUEBILL DEFIES THE WINTER CULL AND MAKES IT BACK UNSCATHED

WEDNESDAY 18 MARCH

Arrived back in the UK to some glorious spring weather - with temperatures hitting 15 degrees C and with high pressure dominating giving clear blue skies and 'wall-to-wall' sunshine. Despite being knackered, just had to get out in such wonderful conditions - and hopefully find a few migrants. The undoubted highlight of my day was the return of one of my drake 'bluebills' - he had survived yet another winter cull (just one more to survive my boy!)

CHESHAM FISHING LAKES

The local GREAT CRESTED GREBE population had risen to 5 in my absence, with 3 birds on the fishing lakes - a pair on the smaller lake at SP 969 003 and the remaining male on the larger at SP 972 002

Also present were -:

Mute Swan (1 first-summer)
Mallard (8)
Tufted Duck (10)
Coot (28 with 2 on the smaller lake)
Moorhen (11)
Wren (3 singing males)
BLACKCAP (singing male)
COMMON CHIFFCHAFF (singing male - first of year in area)
Great Tit (2 singing males)
COAL TIT (singing male - scarce at this location)
Goldfinch (1)
Magpie (1)

SHARDELOES LAKE (BUCKS) (1600 hours)

GREAT CRESTED GREBE (male showing well and calling)
Little Grebes (3 pairs; much whinnying taking place)
Grey Heron (1)
Mute Swans (all 5 birds still present, including 3 of last year's young)
Canada Geese (33)
GADWALL (56+ present many in pairs - could be a bumper breeding season)
COMMON TEAL (pair present)
Tufted Duck (10)
Coot (52)
Common Pheasant (2 males)
Common Buzzard (1)
EUROPEAN HERRING GULL (1 migrant first-year washing and bathing on the lake)
Stock Dove (pair present in dead trees on island)
Green Woodpecker (1)
Great Tit (2 singing males)
Blue Tit (1 singing male)
Long-tailed Tit (2 pairs)
Common Treecreeper (male in full song)
Chaffinch (pair)
Goldfinch (1)
Rooks (at least 38 nests now being utilised in rookery)

WATERCRESS COTTAGE LOOP TRAIL, CHESS VALLEY (BUCKS) (SP 975 000)

CBC Census: Robins (5 singing males), Wren (1), Dunnock (pair), Song Thrush (1 singing male), Chaffinch (2 males), Long-tailed Tit (pair) and on pool, 7 Tufted Duck and a pair of GADWALL.

Against all the odds, an adult drake RUDDY DUCK has defied the winter guns at Staines Reservoirs and returned to a local Little Chalfont site hopefully to breed again for another year (he and his partner yielded 9 babies to flying stage last autumn). This was the icing on the cake for a very enjoyable spring day's birding for me - I just love these adorable ducks.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

VERY QUIET

The last two weeks have seen little movement - just 1 LITTLE EGRET remains in the Chess River Valley and a single male BLACKCAP has been in song at McMinn's Yard in Chesham.

Common Buzzards have been particularly active, whilst up to 5 LESSER REDPOLL have been daily visitors to a garden feeder in Hyde Heath (Paul Keene)

Monday, 2 March 2009

PENN WOOD (SATURDAY)

This afternoon (Saturday 28 March), I recorded a reasonable total of 23 species in Penn Wood.

Highlights included:

COMMON RAVEN (constantly calling from tops of firs for half an hour or so, moving to different trees and "bouncing" along some of the branches)
LESSER REDPOLL (6)
Redwing (20)
Nuthatches and Treecreepers getting active

17 BRAMBLING (over three roost areas)(6 notified by a group of folk from Middlesex in one of the areas where I have not seen many birds recently)
c110 Greenfinch spread over two roost areas

Brambling & Greenfinch dropping to roost at 17:00, whereas a week ago it was still the regular 16:30 (Kevin Holt)