A quiet day suddenly sprang into life when a Peregrine Falcon circled over KGVPF just before lunch and attempted to take one of the local pigeons but it just missed and drifted off towards Hampermill Lake. Then just before hometime a Buzzard flew east over the park closely followed by 2 Carrion Crows and then this evening at home my first Hobby of the year flew past the living room window.
After the weekends mega it was back to the park. A Yellow Wagtail and Cormorant flew over but it was a day of breeding birds. An adult Herring Gull dropped in and started dipping nesting material into the paddling pools which annoyed the bloke working there as he'd just finished cleaning them ready for the day! I then found a GS Woodpecker nest by the fishing lake and a Blue Tit nest near the toilets followed by a LTTit nest near the car park. Further up the park a nest with at least 2 juv Starling were in a dead tree. On the way home I saw one of the Peregrines again circling over the town centre.
Well someone or something must have read my last post when I wrote that I hope something rare would turn up! Friday night and I was asleep in bed when Carey woke me to say something was beeping! I grabbed the pager off the bed side table and read with squinting eyes that a Dusky Thrush was in Kent for its 3rd day. Looks like i'd be off there in the morning! As it was I awoke around 6am anyway and checked for any news and luckily it was still present. So at 7am I set off and arrived on site just after 8.30am. It had showed 10 minutes earlier but another 20-30 minutes went by before the birder next to me said those magical words. "i've got it"! Sure enough stood motionless in an Ash tree there it was my first ever DUSKYTHRUSH. For 15-20 minutes it stood still only moving its head revealing its pale throat. Only the 9th or 10th for Britain depending what you read, it was the first twitchable bird since 1959 so a very much awaited bird for pretty much everyone. Once i've seen a bird it generally disappears the next day and this one was no exception having not been see all day Sunday.
Amazingly i've now reached the 900 posts landmark and so for something to write i'll let you all know that i'm now a newly fledged member of Twitter. If you are also a member then please feel free to follow me @ianbennell75
Hopefully something very rare will turn up somewhere south of Yorkshire (as anything decent lately has been Yorkshire northwards!) very soon and give me something to go have a look at! This is the worst run i've had since I started twitching in late 2001 with my last full blown BB rarity tick being the Baillon's Crake at Rainham way back in September. But I guess the more you see the less you need.
A Bullfinch was heard first thing outside home in Chipperfield and at the park 6 Stock Dove flew over the yard. Down at KGVPF 14 Herring Gull flew high over enjoying themselves. Also present were over 60 Swift which is one of the highest numbers at this site and a Buzzard was rising on the thermals.
A Common Tern flew north following the river mid morning while a Chiffchaff wassinging from the meadow. On the river itself a Grey Wagtail was by the weir and a female Mallard was present with 2 well grown juvs. A Swallow was hunting over the old cress beds.
Born and bred in Watford,Herts, I started birding when I was just 8 years old because the old next door neighbours garden was very overgrown and attracted birds to his and our gardens! I first went to the Watford RSPB group at 15 and then I joined the Herts Bird Club in the same year. I was on the Herts Bird Club committee for 3 years. I started twitching in September 2001 after i'd bought my RBA pager and within a week of owning it i'd added Red-Necked Stint and American Green Heron! I keep 2 main lists which can be seen above.