I wasn't expecting much today, however it turned out to be a good visit with an excellent 52 species being found, that despite not finding the likes of Nuthatch, Bullfinch, Long-tailed Tit, Turtle Dove or Mistle Thrush, all species that could have been expected today, with a bit more fortune I could have been pushing the holy grail of sixty species in a day :-)
Fortune did arrive today though, when I added KINGFISHER (64) to the June species list, two maybe three birds were seen along the College Stream and in the adjacent Grounds, they were trumped however by the sighting of my first COMMON TERN (99, 65) of the year, one flew from the NW over Ashes Lane, heading SE, that's 99 species for the year now just one more for the 100! :-)
A GREY HERON flew over, as did a CORMORANT the latter only the 3rd record this month, also up in the sky was noted many SWIFTS moving through, with smaller numbers of HOUSE MARTINS, I think the latter were feeding rather than heading south, a bit early yet for them to leave. A HOBBY was one of four fantastic raptor species seen to today, the others being the SPARROWHAWK, a pair of BUZZARDS that flew from the Greenhouse Copse and the KESTREL pair, the male of which was watched hunting, it was seen catching a vole, then taking it to the nest box, so surely there are young in there :-)
Other nice species seen today were LESSER WHITETHROAT in the Tree Nursery, SPOTTED FLYCATCHER at the College Grounds and a LITTLE OWL at the Small Holding. Only one of the adult COOTS were seen at the lakes, with one of the two youngsters, but the other youngster and adult could have been obscured from my view.
Few butterflies were noted, just Red Admiral, Meadow Brown and Large Skipper, all seen at the Tree Nursery.
Well that wraps up another months birding at Pittswood, the wettest June for 100 years ( and probably the windiest!) It wasn't quite all doom and gloom though, the Hen Harrier sighting was brilliant record, and a new June species, the Barnacle Goose was less exciting, but none the less a new June species too, bringing the 11 year combined June tally to 87 species. The month ended with a total of 65 species being recorded, which is two better than the mean average, and in joint 4th position out of 11, ending just 3 behind the record June tally of 68 which was achieved in 2010.
The photo's today were hard to come by, but I was pleased to get the young SWALLOWS, ( I did take a few images of them too!) and it's always good to photograph the Spotted Flycathers :-)
|Spotted Flycatcher at the College Grounds|
|Swallow feeding young|
|Young sibling Swallows|