Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Up early

to catch up on the overwhelming workload but after reading Ipins blog everything seemed a bit pointless and total depression had set in. Off out then at 6.30am to see what was around. Two Lesser black backed gulls swapped perch on the telegraph pole over the road as House Sparrow and Starling flushed from my conifer trees. Greenfinch sang loudly on the telegraph wires at the corner, a Collared Dove eyed me warily and Swallows chattered as they perched on the gutters of a barn. Nearing the bumpy road a Grasshoppper Warbler reeled close by, just 100m from my back garden and a Blackcap sang in the plantation. Alarm calls from Blackbird and Robin alerted me to birds with young families and over the next hundred meters I found noisy groups of young Willow Warbler, Sedge Warbler, Wren, Great Tit and Magpie. Looking out north over the rough grass a Kestrel flushed twenty or so Meadow Pipit and a Skylark passed over giving brief snatches of song. Male Reed Buntings gave their three note rendition from atop the stems of grass and two young Stonechat flicked past them from parents who had this year had evaded my best efforts to find their nest location. Whitethroat chattered away in the bushes whilst a pair of male Pheasant argued and lonely Grey Partridge called from dense undergrowth. The wing beats of three Mallard squeaked close overhead before splashing as they landed on the hidden pond whilst Wood Pigeon flushed from the woodland to the north. A Dunnock sang beautifully as I neared a flock of Jackdaw squabbling over spilt goat feed and a pair Goldfinch tinkled in the bushes close by whilst male House Sparrows chirped as they watched over a second brood in the eaves of Mayfair Cottage. A pair of Crows searched the fields for morsels and a flock of Rooks headed off to their communal gathering near the golf course. As a family party of Linnets passed noisily overhead and another two Grasshopper Warbler reeled I caught sight of a Tawny Owl flying down the lane which, as it saw me, banked into the nearby bushes causing alarm calls from Chaffinch and Great Spotted Woodpecker. As I searched for the bird a Curlew called from grassland near the ranges and the rich note of Bullfinches was heard from the bushes nearby where a Blue Tit also fed.
Returning on my route two Pied Wagtails headed off south and a Yellowhammer gave truncated bursts of song. The sky was now filling with the Swifts as they arrived from I know not where and a Coal Tit family called from the tops of a stand of pines. As I neared Banks Pond House Martins swooped low to feed burbling when they got too close to each other and Mistle Thrushes rattled from a nearby field of freshly cut grass. A pair of Coots fed their solitary young as did a single Little Grebe with a sole survivor of it’s second brood. A Moorhen dashed for cover as a Buzzard circled over Fox Covert Plantation and the Canada Geese family craned their necks to see what was happening.
Back home to find three Tree Sparrow amongst the throng at my feeders so I guess the world carries on and now unfortunately, so must I.

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