Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Sun and Migrants.


Had a stroll out to a favoured valley this afternoon and with the warmth of the sun and some true migrants made it feel true spring like. A pair of Wheatears, the first of the year for me were much appreciated, a single Willow Warbler singing added to ambience with Chiffchaffs also singing from what appeared to be every tree. 


Firecrests are just every where at the moment and I just cant help but click away at these Forest Flamers and they make Goldcrests look so drab. 




Arriving at the valley I decided to take a seat in order to have a cuppa whilst enjoying the view, this is a favoured valley of mine where I tend to get a fair few Merlin sightings throughout the winter period and today, yet again there was a perched bird, this time a female just looking over the valley. 

Lapwing are now on territory in most places but hearing Snipe drumming really is somethig that bit special especially when they are right over head at dusk just as I was starting my return walk. Sightings of Woodcocks are becoming more frequent as the spring snow-balls in time and size. 




Saturday, 25 March 2017

Winter Hen Harrier Survey Draws to a Close.


So another winter Hen Harrier survey comes to an end but with the change in weather and spring here there is more to be getting on with until the next winter season survey commences. 

There has been some good days this winter sitting out on the moors and heaths looking and waiting for Harriers to come in at the days end. I have to say that I visited 3 different sites reguarly this winter but my own survey site location failed to produce any sightings which is disappointing but a reflection of what is happening elsewhere with this species throughout the country. Talking with Dorset roost watchers they also state that this was a poor year compared to others. 

So as I walked off site staring at the fire-balling sun as it set over the heath I pondered on how the next winter season will be for the Harriers. 

The day ended with two Hen Harriers, an adult male that drifted through and then a female lingering, dancing in the buffeting wind. A Female Merlin sat motionless in a nearby bush watching over the nearby valley.