Thursday, 31 October 2013

Pearl's A Singer - Elkie Brooks

A perfect end to yesterday as while transporting one of the Moth Traps to the vicinity of the 5th Golf Tee, a Barn Owl took to the wing from a perch on the perimeter fence. Heard now on a nightly basis and seen by Hugh occasionally, this was my first 'sighting' of the year at the farm.
The night however was a little less than perfect, but the temperature did rise, the wind moderated to a zephyr but the rain was persistent during all the hours of darkness. Given the conditions, there was sure to be something in the traps which included dozens of Caddisflies and what might be described as House Flies. Otherwise, Moths were represented by
 THE CHESTNUT* (new to the property)
 2 contrasting specimens of
 and the Micro
I hadn't noticed, prior to this morning, the amount of 'berries' that have disappeared from the trees and bushes hereabouts. This HAWTHORN, directly outside my bedroom window, has already been stripped of two thirds of its crop and was predominantly 'red' when I left just a week ago. From the 'feeders', the niger seeds have been totally overlooked for weeks until this morning when a single Goldfinch was seen feeding there. Similarly, the peanut feeder has attracted nothing, not even a Grey Squirrel, but was in need of a bit of a clean up. Within minutes of re-establishing it this
was at them but quickly moved on to the fat balls.
 Across at Janet's stables, while reinstating power to the Moth Trap, 
this PIED WAGTAIL was capitalising on the food source there.
Au Naturel
one of c7 distinct and separate individuals encountered on the 
property this morning. 2 other species unusually not common 
or regular here, for reasons best known by themselves, are
which were both transiting in good numbers today with odd birds
landing to feed.
on the other hand breed here although are rarely seen near the house.
 One of the COBHAM jets takes off to undertake the daily
commitment with the Royal Navy.
are also back along the River Stour with this individual
 involved in a skirmish with a
which appeared to get the worst of it and retired to a nearby field.
Unfortunately no 'action shots'!
 It is not unusual for the COMMON PHEASANT to 'roost' in 
trees but seem a little ungainly perched this high aloft.
 This strip of MAIZE has been left as a 'Game Crop', providing
food and shelter for wildlife during the winter months. Today it
certainly seemed to be up to the task as c3
were 'flushed' from cover.
plenty of those here taking advantage of the abundance of
Hedgerow Fruits.
 A Royal Navy Helicopter pays a visit to
Bournemouth International Airport.
 and while on the subject of ungainly perchers, far less familiar
 than Pheasants in Oak Trees has to be
on power lines.
As previously reported these OAK TREES were overborne with Acorns earlier in the year, but all seem to have disappeared. Unlike others on the farm there isn't a single 'nut' remaining on any of these 3 neither is there sign of any on the ground. All other trees have a carpet of fruit beneath them and similarly all are still holding on to most of their leafs, despite recent gale force winds!
 Looks like a BADGER had been foraging here?
Other sightings/counts here today include c2 x Song Thrush (good to see back, if indeed they have been anywhere), single Common Buzzard, foraging flock of Long-tailed Tit, numerous Goldfinch all feeding on ASH, a single Cetti's Warbler singing along the Stour along with half a dozen Reed Bunting and 'double figure numbers of Jay (no wonder the Acorns are missing!).
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