Tuesday, 6 April 2010

First Flutters for April.

After a long lay in I desperately needed to exercise the legs and test the aching back. So with the sun shining I chanced a short car journey over to Bookham Common around lunch time. I know it's not the ideal time for birdwatching but standing and walking is far more comfortable than sitting down! For the first hour trudging along muddy paths there was little activity except the songs of Chiffchaff, Blackbird and Song Thrush plus the ever present Jays and Magpies. Despite a thorough search I didn't hear or see any Willow Warblers.
While taking a rest at the main pond a Peacock butterfly (first sighting this year) rested nearby and very high overhead 3 Common Buzzard circled for a moment and then moved northwards over the woods.
On one of the smaller ponds I stood and watched a pair of Mallard practicing their synchronised swimming routine.
Interesting to see the female paddling like mad to stay upside down!
For the first time since I don't know how long a Jay actually sat still long enough for a photocall.
Heading uphill through the quiet woodland glades I watched a number of Comma butterflies, another first for the year. Brimstones and Whites were also flitting around but never settled.
While listening and then locating a male Blackcap in full song inside a blackthorn bush I then heard my first Cuckoo for 2010 calling way over on Banks Common. (I will need to make an early morning visit to stand a chance to capture this species with the camera!)
As I started my homewaard journey a male Chaffinch perched on the roadside hedge which I noted has been cut or more correctly slashed with the 'mower method'. With the back pain much reduced I may risk a longer trip out tomorrow.    FAB.

17 comments:

  1. That peacock butterfly is aptly named - such a beautiful photo of it! Enjoyed the synchronized duck butts too! LOL!!

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  2. This is simply a wonderful series! Especially love the Jay photo. Hope your back is better soon!

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  3. These are some nice bird and butterfly photos. BTW nice blog. Anna :)

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  4. What gorgeous images! I am so glad I found your blog.

    Very best,
    Lois in Cincinnati, USA

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  5. Shelley. Yes, with four false eyes it's very colourful. I'd hoped the butts would get a chuckle from someone! Lol.

    Mona. Despite it's size it is very timid and not usually so confiding.
    The back is improving..Ta.

    Anna. Thanks for stopping by. Appreciate your comments.

    Lois. Thank you and welcome to the "Early Birder".

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  6. well done on your first flutters of the season, and the Cuckoo.

    Good picture of the Jay too, this is the time of year to catch 'em!

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  7. Warren. Thanks for the tip. I notice you had a few flutters earlier this week as well.

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  8. Thanks Roy. Won't be long before there are more species to hunt down.

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  9. Great to see the butterflies on the wing, as it gets warmer.

    And well done on hearing the Cuckoo. I've been keeping an eye, and ear out for these; but unsuccessfully so far.

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  10. Keith. A few more Brimstones today flashing yellow in the sunshine.

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  11. Beautiful butterflies! Looks like you had a great day. Loved the bird photos.

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  12. that jay is beautiful! as is the butterfly!

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  13. Chris P. Thanks, I totally agree.

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  14. Beautiful shots all, Frank! The Jay is really exceptional. I've never seen one before.

    My favorite shot, hands down, is the Mallard's synchronized swimming ;-)

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  15. Hi Larry. Thanks. I think the Mallard were practising for the 2012 Olympics..always fun to watch even the common species.

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