Monday, 6 April 2015

Easter Break

Well easter weekend is nearly over and I did not exactly do a great deal. Winds have been northerly and cold, so little is coming into the country at the moment, and most of the wintering birds have gone so the pager RBA reports are rather dull.
Went over to see Sarah and Ed on Friday. Lot of rain early on and it was cold windy and sometimes drizzly. We went over to Saffron Walden to visit Beeches Nursery, picking up a few plants for her and me. Rather overwhelmed with the number of plants they have on sale, and a visit can prove rather expensive.
Spent a bit of time in her new garden, looking things over to assess some area. While out there we had regular visits by Dunnocks, Robins, Blackbirds, Song Thrush, Greenfinch, Chaffinch and tits. Their garden list is up to 28 already-not bad for four weeks.

Saturday I decided to go down to Amwell. Misjudged it as it was very cold and windy, and rather unpleasant. One Swallow and two Egyptian Geese seemed to be it so I went for a wander. Several singing Chiffchaffs, and two Blackcaps were the highlights, and there was little else in the woods or along the Hollycross track.
Eventually got back to the view point where there were a small flock of hirundines visible towards the south-seven Swallow, one House Martin and a few Sand Martins. Numbers of the varied over the next half hour, and at one point fifteen Swallows headed north.
Not much else, the Black Headed Gull colony is large, loud and noisy. One Redshank remained on view most of the morning, and two Oystercatchers called in briefly.

Sunday I stayed in and watched the Tour of Flanders cycle race, with a sore throat and a bit of a cold.

Easter Monday is nice warm and sunny, but there is still a cool northerly breeze.
Went for a walk around Aston End. Three singing Greenfinch, and four singing Linnets were nice to hear. Lots of Chiffchaff in as well, but no other migrants. Also encountered a few Yellowhammers (no Corn Bunting though, and no Bullfinch).

Despite the sunshine and the warmth, the only raptors were Buzzards. Eight or nine were seen at one point while scanning up and down the river, with at least one pair displaying.

Butterflies were also rather scarce, one Small Tortoiseshell and three Peacocks.
Working in the garden this afternoon, I had two Small Tortoiseshells and a Peacock, with two Swallows flying over.

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