Sunday, 27 March 2011

Patchwalk - 27 March.

During my 90 minute stroll at Epsom Common late morning today the majority of the species logged were by sound rather than by sight against background noises that included yapping and barking dogs plus a low overflying helicopter. The pond held 11 Canada Geese, occasionally squabbling with one another, plus the usual Mallards, Moorhen and a single lazy Cormorant. No sign of any Mandarins ... probably hiding from the dog walkers! Wren, Robin, Blackbird and Song Thrush were all singing from various locations around the pond and twittering overhead were Blue and Long-tailed Tits.

Great Tits were less numerous but as usual their calls were somewhat varied, from the scolding 'che..che..che' to the more common constant 'didger, didger, didger' sound that to the untrained ear could easily be mistaken for the Chiffchaff (Phylloscopus collybita) our earliest returning migrant warbler. I saw at least six separate Chiffchaff singing from their high treetop perches (see above) and heard a few others calling throughout my stroll. A silent Dunnock evaded the lens while Great Spotted Woodpeckers drummed repeatedly against dead wood while occasionally announcing there presence with a short, sharp 'kick, kick..kick!' A Green Woodpecker evaded my eyes but blurted out its distinctive 'yaffle' laugh. Way in the distance I thought I heard the mewing 'piiyay' of a bird of prey but the call wasn't repeated. A few minutes later my attention was drawn to the repeated and increasing crescendo of 'krrrr, krrrr ... krrrr' calls from a group of Carrion Crows and a search with the bins located them mobbing and chasing a Common Buzzard across the open sky. 


Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo).

Other sightings included Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Magpie, Jay, Jackdaw and Woodpigeon while hearing the ''vuih, vuih, vuih' whistling calls of the resident Nuthatches.

 Narcissus, Pulsatilla (Pasque Flower) and Tulipa humilis 'Persian Pearl'.

Back at home the sounds came from the twittering House Sparrows hiding in the privet hedge, Parakeets squawking overhead and the 'doo, doooo, do' from the Collard Doves while I enjoyed a cup of tea outside in the sunshine together with the colourful array of spring blooms.  FAB.

9 comments:

  1. It sounds as if you had a lovely day. :) Nice images, too. :)

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  2. Such a nice series. The bright flowers really cheered me, as we still have nothing but snow, snow, snow, and wind.

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  3. Beautiful images Frank. I love the pink flowers. Sounds like you had a great day. Have a good week. Carol

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  4. Your photos, as always, are incredible--he spring flowers are so fresh looking. I also like the way you described the birdsong--I can almost hear them!
    I'm enjoying catching up on your posts--always interesting, beautiful, fun to read!
    Kay

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  5. Hi Frank ...it sounds like you had a very pleasant day, and you have some good photo to go with it!!
    Have a good week!!

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  6. Beautiful flower collage Frank. I did get the very briefest of sightings of my first Chiffy this last week.

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  7. I had to laugh at your opening paragraph Frank, it sounded just like my patch!!

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  8. Great photo`s as usual Frank!
    It`s great to finally get some migrant birds coming through now. We have had a few Chiffchaffs, a Ring Ouzel and today I saw my first Wheatear of the year!
    Spring is `springing`!
    J
    Follow me at HEDGELAND TALES

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  9. Thanks Lois, it was very enjoyable in the sunshine.

    Hi Mona. Also lots of green shoots appearing with the promise of other colours to follow.

    Thanks Carol. Still plenty more pinks and dark reds yet to appear.

    Hi Kay. More colour from the flowers than the birds ... unlike your backyard where the avian species are very vibrant.

    Hi Grammie. Cheers, I'll do my best to enjoy whatever comes.

    Cheers Roy. Good numbers around here so hopefully you'll see a few more soon.

    HI Warren. Would be great to have a patch that nobody else had access to!!

    Hi John. Ring Ouzel and Wheatear ... either here would be a rarity for me.

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