Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Early Morning Bird Song.

A week ago I set my alarm with the intention of catching the 'Dawn Chorus' but overslept by half an hour by which time the sun was just beginning to lighten the sky at Bookham Common and the bird song was not as vocal as I'd expected. However in the first 20 minutes I heard two Nightingales plus 2 Lesser Whitethroat singing deep within the scrub and a distant calling Cuckoo to add to my year list.
Click here to hear the delightful song of a Nightingale.

The first photo call was a Blackbird in full voice, silhouetted against the western sky
Click here for a song recording.

Slowly the cloudless sky lightened and I headed in the direction of the calling Cuckoo but failed to find its perch within the wooded area but added Nuthatch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Jay, Woodpigeon, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Pheasant and Stock Dove to the list.
Returning to the open 'plain' I snapped a perched Kestrel just before it flew away. 


The next obvious chorister was a Song Thrush, initially just enjoying the early morning rays on its high perch and then it promptly turned away to utter its repetitive song.

Click here for a song recording.

As expected I saw and listened to numerous Robins as they all confirmed their presence from their lofty song posts.

I also saw and heard Willow Warbler , several Common Whitethroat, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Chaffinch, and Dunnock.  

With the warmer weather the green clothing on the trees and bushes continues to intensify day by day so very soon many species will become more difficult to find. Above are a female Blackcap and a male Bullfinch taking a rest.

A cropped view of a silent Chiffchaff perched amongst the blossom.

Birds flying over the common included Jackdaws, a lonesome Greylag Goose and a Common Buzzard slowly soaring upwards. Others not photographed were Mallard, Collared Dove, Crow, Magpie, Canada Geese, Ring-necked Parakeets, Sparrowhawk, Grey Heron, Starling and a single Swallow which passed over the common heading northwards.

Wrens were also very vocal during my walk but failed to perch long enough (or I failed to operate the camera quick enough!) for a decent picture. 

I saw several species collecting nesting material including this obliging Robin.

As I returned to my starting point around 9am (some three hours later) the male Blackbird was in the same place and still belting out his territorial song. The final tally for my morning stroll was 34 species.  FAB.


  1. Frank you picked up enough great photos from your outing and a good tally. The later start didn't cause too much a dent on your tally it seems. Beautiful birds and locations...

  2. Hello
    Oh, so beautyful birds you have her.
    I can hear the song.
    Hugs from Karin

  3. What a beautiful assortment of photos - love them!

  4. What a wonderful walk! Your images are, as always, just beautiful.

  5. Great way to start the day!

  6. It's always good to get out early(?) and listen to the fantastic sound of the dawn chorus Frank, it's a wonderful experience.
    At the moment 'my' Blackbird sings his heart out every morning and most evenings from his lofty post, seemingly undeterred by whatever the weather is doing.

    You got some great images and collected an excellent set of 'ticks' from your walk...[;o)

  7. All of them, are photographed by you.

  8. That was a really nice stroll and a great observation moment!
    Impressive array of species!
    The last pic of the Black bird is gorgeous!
    Cheerio, Frank and enjoy your WE!

  9. It's a great time of year for dawn and dusk bird song. For once I can hear Mistle and Song Thrushes at the same time along with all the usual garden songsters.


  10. Great pictures Frank, nice that once again started to publish the entries :)

    Regards :)

  11. Thanks for all your comments.

    The early am chorus is a special time and hopefully I'll enjoy the various vocalist again in the very near future ... weather permitting!

  12. You have Nightingales? I am impressed. A great selection of photos Frank. And you need only to get up at 5am this week to repeat the job.


I hope you enjoyed your visit and I always appreciate your comments and feedback.


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