Sunday, 8 January 2012

Local Patch

I have decided to put more effort into my local patch birding to get the best out of the opportunities in the local area that, at present,  is severely underwatched.  My brother and I are the only regular observors so a detailed account of the birds that use the area may come in usefull for future refrence and possibly conservation purposes.  For this reason, I have also decided to take meticulous notes on as many relavent sightings of birds and wildlife in general in the surrounding area.  I have begun by outlining a local patch border in which most of my observations will be made and have subsequently divided the local patch into 69 smaller areas, labeled A-Z followed by 1-43 for the remaining locations.  Although this may sound a little extortionate I believe it is the best way to accurately assess the area without creating confussion when interpreting results.


 My local patch map, extent of borders denoted by the thick pale orange border.

FIELDS BEHIND THE RSSKL

I decided to make a larger circuit around my local patch today whilst walking my dog, Theo for an afternoon walk between 11:45am and 14:00pm.  The route took me south around the fields behind the RSSKL were a flock of 23+ Fieldfare (area E) and a Red Kite (area I) started the day out nicely.  The hedges at the southern extent of the first field hosted 5 Blackbirds chasing each other aggressively through the small ash trees and ending up attacking each other over a disputed territory.  Area G hell douzens possibly hundreds of Fieldfare amongst a large group of sheep grazing in the field as well as a flock of 50+ Starlings, a Yellowhammer was also of note but was only heard briefly calling.  I decided to take an unusual route behind Langley Lodge Farm (area K) were a pair of Mallard were on the small hamlet pond accompanied by 1 Moorhen, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker (a year tick) in the front Garden near Berrybushes farm and a single Wren in the undergrowth.  Area L held 11 Common Gulls and 2 Black-headed Gulls followed by 2 flyover Stock Doves (a year tick).

BERRYBUSHES WOOD

Area 31 was particularly active with a probable flock of Siskin or Redpoll sp. in the tree tops at the western extent of the wood feeding on dead Norway Spruce trees.  Further north east a flock of 24+ Stock Doves were feeding in area N and a flyover Siskin was also of note as were the douzens of Fieldfare and 2 Song Thrushes.

MIDDLE FARM AREA

The A4251 gull field (area P) hosted douzens of Common Gulls, a full count could not be conducted as many were temporarily out of sight behind the mound.  Around Middle Farm (areas N and G) was particularly active with a flock of 61+ Fieldfare, in the hedgerows and trees bordering the A41, followed by the only 3 Redwing of the day.  Also of note was 1 Green Woodpecker, and a single Skylark (a year tick) in area J.  On my return through area E (the first field behind the RSSKL), 1 flyover Linnet (a year tick) and 2 Yellowhammers (also a year tick) were of note.
(Samuel Perfect)