18 Nov 19

Perryfields Butterfly Reserve, Church Ope Car Park, Penns Wood, St Andrew's Church, Church Ope Cove and Church Ope Cove Wood, Wakeham Railway Cuttings and Wakeham Wood

A beautiful Autumn day, with wall to wall blue skies and a little bit of warmth in the sun. Main highlights today were the long-staying Yellow-browed Warbler and the eastern Lesser Whitethroat, both in Penns Wood. The latter was heard singing and having heard a recording of Sylvia curruca halimondendri, could this bird possibly be that form. Click Here for the song of S. c. halimondendri.

Also in the wood were 2 Firecrests, several Goldcrests, 20+ Long-tailed Tits, Chaffinches, Goldfinches and the female Great Spotted Woodpecker.

Unusual sighting of the day went o a Mallard which was seen flying over Perryfields Quarry towards The Bill.

Here is a breakdown of the birds recorded today:

Perryfields Butterfly Reserve: 1 male Blackcap. Also 2 Meadow Pipits, 1 Siskin and a Mallard overhead..

Church Ope Car Park: 6 Long-tailed Tit

Penns Wood: 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 5 Goldcrest, 1 Firecrest and 20+ Long-tailed Tit

St Andrew's Church: 1 Chiffchaff and 2 Goldcrest

Church Ope Cove: 35 Rock Pipit, 1 Grey Wagtail and 2 Pied Wagtail (1 adult, a 1st winter)

Church Ope Cove Wood: 2 Chiffchaff, 2 Goldcrest and 2 Firecrest

Wakeham Railway Cuttings: 5 Goldcrest, 1 Firecrest and 7 Long-tailed Tit

Wakeham Wood: 1 Goldcrest

Also about were 5 Wall Lizards (all in the church grounds), 4 Red Admirals, 2 Marmalade Hoverflies and a Celery Fly.

Here are a few images from today:

In the butterfly reserve at Perryfields there are plenty of berries about. This Blackbird is just about to swallow this rose-hip.

Also in the reserve a male Blackcap soaking up the sun and this.....

.......inquisitive Blue Tit

These two Firecrests were busy........

...........feeding in amongst the Hebes........

.........behind the huts at Church Ope Cove.

Also at the back of the Cove were these two...........

............Chiffchaffs.

One of the two Chiffchaffs making its way through the Ivy.

On the beach today were 35 Rock Pipits. This one is keeping an eye out for any potential bird of prey swooping in from above.

Always on the run chasing down the Kelp Flies.

Not my best effort but one of the Rock Pipits flies off to another spot.

So busy chasing down the Kelp Flies.

An adult Pied Wagtail takes the high ground, perhaps to keep an eye out for..........

............junior here.

Also on the beach the adult Grey Wagtail.

It wasn't just the Rock Pipits feeding on the Kelp Flies, but also this Grey Wagtail, which was proving to be a lot harder to video than the Rock Pipits. So busy.

And wasn't just the birds enjoying the sunshine but several Wall Lizards like this youngster and this........

..........adult, in the grounds of St Andrew's Church. As I was photographing this wall Lizard, I realised there was a fly on one of the leaves. Turns out it was an..........

.................aberrant orange-brown morph Celery Fly. It must have been warm out!!!

Also found were two Marmalade Hoverflies at the back of the cove.......

........where there was also this Red Admiral and 3 others close by.

Mammals Recorded: 2 Grey Squirrel

Birds Recorded: 1 Mallard, Herring Gull, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Meadow Pipit, 35 Rock Pipit, 2 Pied Wagtail, 1 Grey Wagtail, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, 1 Lesser Whitethroat, 1 Blackcap, 5 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 15 Goldcrest, 4 Firecrest, 33+ Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wren, Magpie, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, 1 Siskin and Goldfinch

Reptiles Recorded: 5 Wall Lizard (Podarcis muralis)

Butterflies Recorded: 4 Red Admiral

Wasps Recorded
: German Wasp (Vespula germanica) and Common Wasp (Vespula vulgaris)

Hoverflies Recorded: 2 Marmalade Hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus)

Flies RecordedKelp Fly (Coelopa frigida) and an aberrant orange-brown morph Celery fly (Euleia heraclei)

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On this day..........
2018
Today's Sightings Here.


2017
Today's Sightings Here.

17 Nov 19

Pennsylvania Castle Woods.

On my walk this morning I dropped into Penns Wood a couple of times and on both occasions was fortunate enough to see and hear the Yellow-browed Warbler. Also here were 3 Firecrests, 2 Chiffchaffs and a male Blackcap.

What I wasn't expecting though, on my return trip, was looking at what I first thought was the Blackcap and then realising I was actually looking at a Lesser Whitethroat.

With other birders here, who were also looking for the Yellow-browed Warbler, one of them Duncan Walbridge was kind enough to point out that it was one of the Eastern Lesser Whitethroats.

Note: More Lesser Whitethroats Here.

Here are a few images:









Also in Penns Wood a Great Spotted Woodpecker, 12+ Long-tailed Tits and several Chaffinches. Also a Siskin overhead.
Here are a few other images from this morning from Penns Wood and St Andrew's Church:

One of the 3 Firecrests in Penns Wood.

A Grey Squirrel looks on.

Is it safe!!

One of the juvenile Wall Lizards makes its way out into the sun, in the church grounds.

Ships Today

This is the Dutch Container Ship "Helga" on its way from Southampton to Belfast. More on this vessel Here.

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On this day..........
2018
Today's Sightings Here.


2017
Today's Sightings Here.

16 Nov 19

Wakeham Wood, Wakeham Railway Cuttings, Penns Wood, St Andrew's Church, Church Ope Cove, Rufus Castle, Bumpers Lane and Mermaid Track.

Another fine start to the day and great to see the Yellow-browed Warbler back in Penns Wood. Yet again some good views of it, before it headed off down the slope with the 20+ Long-tailed Tits.

Just the 3 Firecrests today and all singles at Penns Wood, Rufus Castle and The Mermaid Track.

Here is a break down of this mornings birds recorded:

Wakeham Wood: 1 Goldcrest, 6 Long-tailed Tits and 2 Fieldfare

Wakeham Railway Cuttings: 5 Long-tailed Tits

Penns Wood: 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 5 Goldcrest, 1 Firecrest and 20+ Long-tailed Tits. Flying over the wood 1 Grey Wagtail and 1 Siskin

Church Ope Cove: 12 Rock Pipit and 2 Pied Wagtail (1 adult and a 1st winter)

Church Ope Cove Wood: 1 Chiffchaff

Rufus Castle: 1 Firecrest and 5 Long-tailed Tits

Mermaid Track: 1 Goldcrest, 1 Firecrest and 4 Long-tailed Tits

Also about were a few Grey Squirrels, a juvenile Wall Lizard and a Muscidae Fly,  Phaonia subventa fly

Here are a few images and a video from today:

This Sparrowhawk really upset the Long-tailed Tits as it passed over Penns Wood.

On the beach an adult Pied Wagtail

One of the 2 Fieldfare in Wakeham Wood this morning.

In the grounds of St Andrews Church a juvenile Wall Lizard.

This is one of the Phaonia species of Muscidae flies, of which there are 3 similar ones Phaonia rufiventris, P. bitincta and P. subventa. From what I can gather, it is most likely to be Phaonia subventa due its location. More on Muscidae Flies Here.

Mammals Recorded: 3 Grey Squirrel

Birds Recorded: 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Buzzard, 1 Peregrine Falcon, Herring Gull, Wood Pigeon, Collared Dove, 12 Rock Pipit, 2 Pied Wagtail, 1 Grey Wagtail, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, 2 Fieldfare, Song Thrush, 3 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 7 Goldcrest, 3 Firecrest, 40+ Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wren, Magpie, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch, 1 Siskin and Goldfinch

Reptiles Recorded: Wall Lizard (Podarcis muralis)

Wasps Recorded: German Wasp (Vespula germanica) and Common Wasp (Vespula vulgaris)

Flies Recorded: Kelp Fly (Coelopa frigida) and 1 Muscidae Fly (Phaonia subventa)

Ships Today

Way out on the horizon is this Dutch Cargo Ship "Arklow Valour" on its way from Warrenpoint to Rochester. More on this vessel Here.

This is the British Pleasure Craft "Jessica Kate" on its way from Weymouth/Portland to Dartmouth. More on this vessel Here.

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On this day..........
2018
Today's Sightings Here.


2017
Today's Sightings Here.

15 Nov 19

Wakeham Wood, Wakeham Railway Cuttings, Penns Wood, St Andrew's Church and Church Ope Cove.

All I can say about today is that it was dry. Other than that it was a pretty gloomy day, which was also reflected in the birds noted. Other than 5 Firecrests at Penns Wood (3) and Church Ope Cove Wood (2), the only other highlights were singles of Chiffchaff at the aforementioned locations, a handful of Goldcrests at various spots along my walk and a male Blackcap along the Railway Cuttings.

The only bit of drama today was the sudden appearance of a Common Buzzard which came "screeching" into Penns Wood closely followed by a second bird and a Carrion Crow. Goodness knows why they were chasing each other, but watching all 3 birds flying at speed and avoiding the trees and bushes, just showed that whatever your size, these birds were real masters of aviation. Very impressive.

A sad sight this morning was watching one of the 12 Rock Pipits on the beach at Church Ope Cove with its right foot missing and minus a claw on the the remaining foot. I can only surmise that by virtue of their feeding habits, this individual may well have caught its feet in something "alien" to the beach. i.e. fishing line, netting, rope etc.

Here's a break down of the birds noted today.

Wakeham Wood: 1 Song Thrush and 2 Greenfinch

Wakeham Railway Cuttings: 1 Blackcap, 2 Goldcrest, 8 Long-tailed Tits and 2 Redwing

Penns Wood: 1 Chiffchaff, 6 Goldcrest, 3 Firecrest, 12+ Long-tailed Tits and several Chaffinch

Church Ope Cove: 12 Rock Pipit

Church Ope Cove Wood: 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Goldcrest and 2 Firecrest

Here are a few images from today:

All appears well with this Rock Pipit.............

............and even here in this video, you wouldn't suspect anything was wrong as it drinks from a small pool of water in the recess of this boulder. That is until it walked away.

As you can see, it has lost its right foot and a claw on its remaining foot. Tough world out there!!

The German Wasp nest is still active despite the cold conditions.

And the Common Wasp nest is still active as well, though there were definitely fewer wasps coming and going.

Birds Recorded: 1 Cormorant, 2 BuzzardHerring Gull, Wood Pigeon, Meadow Pipit, 12 Rock Pipit, 1 Pied Wagtail, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, 2 Redwing, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Blackcap, 2 Chiffchaff, 10 Goldcrest, 5 Firecrest, 20+ Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wren, Magpie, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Starling, House Sparrow, Chaffinch and 2 Greenfinch

Wasps Recorded: German Wasp (Vespula germanica) and Common Wasp (Vespula vulgaris)

Flies Recorded: Kelp Fly (Coelopa frigida)

Ships Today

This is the American Container Ship "Maersk Idaho" on its way from Bremerhaven (Denmark) to Norfolk (USA) More on this vessel Here.

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On this day..........
2018
Today's Sightings Here.


2017
Today's Sightings Here.

14 Nov 19

Penns Wood, St Andrew's Church, Church Ope Cove, Wakeham Railway Cuttings and Wakeham Wood.

Another lovely start to the day, but the cloud soon moved in. Good to see and hear the Yellow-browed Warbler again in Penns Wood, with a brief but excellent view of it as it landed on a Buddleia in the grounds of St Andrew's Church. Unfortunately a group of people came through the archway and that was the last I saw of it. As soon as it was spooked it made its way back into the main wood.

Here is a breakdown of the birds noted this morning:

Penns Wood and St Andrew's Church: 1 Blackcap, 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 5 Goldcrest, 2 Firecrest, 12+ Long-tailed Tits and 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker

Church Ope Cove: 23 Rock Pipit, 1 Grey Wagtail and 1 Pied Wagtail. Out to sea a Black-headed Gull a few metres of the beach.

Church Ope Cove Wood: 1 Chiffchaff, 1 Goldcrest and 2 Firecrest

Wakeham Railway Cuttings: 2 Goldcrest

Wakeham Wood: 1 Goldcrest and 5 Long-tailed Tits

Also seen today were 4 juvenile and an adult Wall Lizard in the church grounds. And at the back of the cove were 2 Red Admirals.

Here are a few images from today:

Penns Wood where there are good numbers of birds especially Chaffinch, Great Tits and Blue Tits. Every now and then a wandering flock of Long-tailed Tits will pass on through and in tow there are Great Tits, Firecrests, a Chiffchaff and a Yellow-browed Warbler.

Sadly the Yellow-browed Warbler but a Chiffchaff high up in the canopy.

Meanwhile at ground level the Goldcrests work their way along the brambles and bushes.

Well it is that time of year and there aren't many places where you wont see a Robin.

Still about in Penns wood, the female Great Spotted Woodpecker

In the church grounds an adult Wall Lizard.

Also on the walls were 4 juveniles, with this one shedding its skin.

A family day out. Six very vocal Ravens making their way over the cove.

On the beach the Rock Pipit numbers are picking up again.

Today there were 23.

Very photogenic, especially when the sun is behind you.

Also on the beach this Grey Wagtail making the most of trillions of Kelp Flies.

Mammals Recorded: Grey Squirrel

Birds Recorded: 1 Buzzard, 2 Kestrel, 1 Black-headed Gull, Herring Gull, Wood Pigeon, 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 23 Rock Pipit, 1 Pied Wagtail, 1 Grey Wagtail, Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Blackcap, 2 Chiffchaff, 1 Yellow-browed Warbler, 9 Goldcrest, 4 Firecrest, 17+ Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Wren, Magpie, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, 6 Raven, Starling, Chaffinch and Goldfinch

Reptiles Recorded: 5 Wall Lizard (Podarcis muralis)

Butterflies Recorded: 2 Red Admiral

Wasps Recorded: German Wasp (Vespula germanica) and Common Wasp (Vespula vulgaris)

Flies Recorded: Kelp Fly (Coelopa frigida)

Ships Today

This is the Danish Tanker "Maersk Barry" on its way into Portland Harbour from Brake (Denmark). More on this vessel Here.

This is the Liberian Container Ship "MSC Antonia" on its way from Maasvlakte (Holland) to Valencia (Spain). More on this vessel Here.

This is the British yacht "Wanderer" on its way from Portland Harbour to an unknown destination. Now you see it..........

...........now you dont. Quite a swell out there. More on this vessel Here.

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On this day..........
2018
Today's Sightings Here.


2017
Today's Sightings Here.