Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Cassiobury Park- 31.3.10

A couple of surprises today with a late Lesser Redpoll and 4 Swallows that were heading South! The Little Egret was on the river and a Blackcap and Chiffchaff were singing.

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Good day in Herts

The Yellow Wagtail, Ruddy Shelduck, a Shoveler at Wilstone, Oystercatcher, Red-Crested Pochard and the LRP.

I'd booked the day off in preperation of visiting Suffolk for the Lesser Kestrel, Pallid Swift and Alpine Swifts but when news late afternoon on the Monday was negative of the first 2 I decided not to go and go to work instead. Tuesday morning and my alarm went off at 6.15am and I thought sod it im not going to work today! 8.30am the LK was still there but had gone by 9am so I went to Hilfield Reservoir instead and added 3 year ticks in doing so. A Little-Ringed Plover was on the dam and Sand Martins and Swallows were evident in small numbers. 8 singing Chiffchaffs were dotted around the reservoir.

I then went to Tring Reservoirs where a Buzzard flew over the A41 near Chesham and a Red Kite was over the leisure centre on Cow Lane. Startops End was the first port of call. The male Red-Crested Pochard was still there with a Blackcap and 2 Chiffchaffs singing. On Marsworth 2 Cetti's Warblers were singing from the reed bed.

Wilstone held a few hirundines and another Cetti's Warbler was heard from the hide. A Red Kite and a Buzzard flew over and an Oystercatcher was forced down by the heavy rain showers. Another Red Kite was over the sewage wworks on the way home .

Another Buzzard was circling over junction 21a of the M25.

The final stop was to the puddle at Willow's Farm near Tyttenhanger. For such a small body of water there was an amazing selection of birds around it with a cracking male Yellow Wagtail being the highlight. Also present was the Ruddy Shelduck, 2 Egyptian Geese, 2 Oystercatchers, 2 Redshank, 2 Lapwing and a probable White Wagtail!

Monday, 29 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 29.3.10

A Meadow Pipit was a surprise find in the bowling green this morning before flying off West. Also present were 3 Chaffinches and 2 Pied Wagtails.

A slow Sunday aswell! - 28.3.10

A few Long-Tailed Tits and Carrion Crows were seen while playing footy with my boy on the Meridan.

Another slow Saturday - 27.3.10

10 Canada Geese flew over near Leavsden Studio's at 8.45am.

Callowland Rec - 26.3.10

A Meadow Pipit was heard flying over mid morning.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Watford - 25.3.10

Only 9 months to christmas!!

The best bird of the day was a low flying Red Kite that flew North over Callowland Rec. Also present was a singing Chiffchaff. Another singing Chiffchaff was at Oxhey Park. My first Blackcap of the year was singing at KGV playing fields along with another Chiffchaff. Finally a Kingfisher and a group of 11 Magpies were in Cassiobury Park.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 24.3.10

A good day in the park today with a pair of Mandarin Ducks flying over the meadow at 8.30am heading North. My first Herts Chiffchaffs were singing away and the Little Egret was by the rustic bridge. A Brimstone was at the East end of the park in the afternoon making the most of the sunshine and finally the male Kestrel was around the mini railway showing very well.

Cassiobury Park - 23.3.10

The Little Egret was still on the river and a Ring-Necked Parakeet flew over.

Meadow Pipits - 22.3.10

2 Meadow Pipits flew over Cassiobury Park.

Titchfield Haven - 21.3.10

2 of the 14 Med Gulls, the showy Bittern and the GND.

An own car trip to the Solent with the Watford RSPB group provided a few good avian highlights but unfortunately not a lot of year ticks or Spring migrants as hoped for. The first good bird of the day was a Great-Northern Diver fishing for crabs just offshore. This was followed by my first Chiffchaff of the year singing away and then cracking views of a Bittern were had from the meadow hide. At leat 14 Mediterranean Gulls were around the reserve 13 of them summer adults and 1 1st summer. A muddy walk towards Meon was undertaken as 7 Water Pipits had been reported in horse paddocks by the canal. Unfortunately for the rest of the group I was the only person to see them with 4 birds still present, as 2 had walked past them and the others arrived just after they had flown to a nearby field!

Bobbing around at East Hyde - 20.3.10

I finally pulled my finger out and went over to East Hyde near Harpenden to try to see the Jack Snipes that had been present on a small channel for many weeks. I tried just after noon with no luck so carried on to the Herts bird club conference at Rothampstead research centre. Once that had finished I went back just before dusk and after a 5 minute wait I finally picked out a single Jack Snipe bobbing around feeding. Everytime I had another look another bird appeared until there were 3 next to each other all bobbing. Quite comical!

Also present were a Little Egret , 2 Little Grebes, a few Gadwall and a hybrid goose.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Weekly Catch Up - 19.3.10

Due to internet problems beyond my control I shall just give you a quick catch up of the highlights of the past 4 days.

Tuesday - A Ring-Necked Parakeet flew over Hempstead Road on my way to work with another 2 in Cassiobury Park.

Wednesday - A Green Woodpecker was feeding on the grass at the side of the bowling green in Cassiobury Park and another Ring-Necked Parakeet flew over.

Thursday - By far the best day with a Meadow Pipit flying North over KGV playing fields and another over Cassiobury Park along with the male Kestrel being mobbed by a Carrion Crow.

Friday - 2 Green Woodpeckers were heard calling to each other this morning and a Goldcrest was singing from trees in the council yard.

Monday, 15 March 2010

100th Buzzard - 15.3.10

2 Buzzards which soared over Callowland Rec in North Watford were my 100th and 101st seen in Hertfordshire. The Little Egret was again on the river in Cassiobury Park just before noon.

Hilfield Reservoir- 14.3.10

I spent a couple of hours walking around the reservoir this morning and saw the following. A male Bullfinch and Greenfinch were seen in the hand and 3 Buzzards were soaring over neighbouring fields. Skylarks were singing and a male Siskin was seen briefly.

Dull Saturday - 13.3.10

A day of no birds as I stayed in to do chores! :(

Friday, 12 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 12.3.10

Another quiet day in the park with Grey Wagtail, 7 Redwing, Kingfisher (heard) and 2 Ring-Necked Parakeets being of any note.

Thursday, 11 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 11.3.10

A Grey Heron flew over the yard first thing while the Little Egret was on the river again and 2 Grey Wagtails were seen. The best bird of the day were the 2 Skylarks that flew North around 9.30am.

Oxhey - 10.3.10

A Grey Wagtail and a flock of 19 Magpies at Paddock Road allotments were seen.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 9.3.10

A fairly quiet day today with the Kingfisher by the rustic bridge and 2 Bullfinches in the meadow being of any note. 8 Ring-Necked Parakeet flew over and Mute Swans were obvious with 2 adults on the river which were joined by an incoming 1st winter which they soon saw off. Another adult was on the canal with 2 Canada Geese. Even with a cold wind a Carrion Crow flew over with a stick in it's mouth and a Bumblebee was seen.

Monday, 8 March 2010

KGVPF + Hilfield Res - 8.3.10

Spent most of the day pruning at KGV Playing Fields in West Watford but apart from a couple of Redwings and some Common and Black-Headed Gulls it was pretty quiet.

After work I paid my first visit to Hilfield Reservoir of the year and saw a couple of year ticks those being Black-Necked Grebe and Goosander. A Buzzard also flew over continuing the good run of that species.

Back Garden Birds - 7.3.10

A slight difference in that it's my mums garden rather than mine! 2 Goldfinches, 2 Collared Doves and a Chaffinch were seen.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Great Birds Without Birding!! - 6.3.10

An earlyish start taking my son to football practise at Evergreen FC in Abbots Langley saw 40+ Redwings and 2 Fieldfares on the pitches and 2 Sparrowhawks were seen including 1 male that flew over at head height to try to grab one of the thrushes.

An hour in Hemel Hempstead shopping was brightened up by a Red Kite flying low over the water gardens then over the high street. Also seen were 87 Canada Geese along the water gardens aswell as 1 Muscovy Duck and 2 Grey Wagtails.

The final good birds were 2 Ravens flying NE over Kings Langley occasionaly soaring on thermals.

Friday, 5 March 2010

Cassiobury Park - 5.3.10

After lunch I went to finish off marking out the bottom 2 football pitches when Martin Parr was walking back to his car. He told me the Little Egret was still on the river and the male Kestrel was still around the toilet block. Whilst looking for the Little Owl (which we didn't see) a Buzzard flew over and joined another Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk circling over the East end of the park.

Around Watford - 4.3.10

At KGV Playing Fields 2 Ring-Necked Parakeets flew over as did a group of 9 Magpies whilst 3 Jays were around the community centre.

At Callowland Rec 39 Redwings were feeding on the football pitches.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Not a lot - 3.3.10

The only highlight today was an adult Mute Swan which flew over Rickmansworth Road this morning.

Butteryfly no.2 - 2.3.10

A much quieter day than yesterday with just another/same adult Cormorant flying over the council yard in Cassiobury Park and whilst working on clearing a roundabout at the end of Rickmansworth Road a Comma flew in to sun itself.

Cracking Cassiobury - 1.3.10

An excellent day in the park was had with not 1 but 2 good raptors seen. The first good bird of the day was a Skylark that flew North. A Pair of Ring-Necked Parakeets were in the meadow and at least 20 Redwings were still around. An adult Cormorant flew South shortly afterwards with a Grey Wagtail and Kingfisher flying along the canal. A Lesser Redpoll flew over the council yard and there were 8 Canada Gesse dotted around. 2 were on the canal and 2 flew over them with 4 on the cress beds next to the fishing lake. The Little Owl was showing well sitting in the sun in it's favoured tree and the sun even brought out a Red Admiral. The 2 good raptors were a Buzzard which flew over towards Whippendell Woods (first record in nearly 4 years) and a male Kestrel which I accidentaly flushed when going to lock the toilets.

Lynster's Farm - 28.2.10

I popped in on the off chance on the way back from Dorset and luckily the Green Sandpiper was still on the farm pool. 2 Egyptian geese were asleep in the field aswell.