Records over the spring and summer

Thank you all for the continued submission of detailed bird and wildlife sightings so far this year. Our database for 2012 onwards is now nearing 30,000 records. As we enter the breeding season, we are going to be more selective about the records that we report on the blog for various reasons, instead focusing on reporting migrants, but we will continue to gratefully accept all records (breeding information being very important!) and store them in our database so that we can keep tabs our local bird populations and report on them at a later date. Thanks!

23rd April 2017

The Reads Bottom area came good mid-afternoon with a Black Redstart flitting between the fence posts (AD/RR). A typical spring date for our 11th record and 15th bird (all since 2010), there were no records last year so this was a sight to savour. Two Wheatears and the two Red-legged Partridges were in Broadfield, while seven Swallows and four Whitethroats were also around.

The BW sector had a Willow Warbler at Parsons Land and a Mistle Thrush by the Holly Lane car park, as well as five Whitethroats, 27 Blackcaps, 14 Chiffchaffs and seven Pheasants.

Butterflies on the wing in the BW sector included five Dingy Skippers, six Grizzled Skippers, a Holly Blue, a Speckled Wood, a Peacock, two Orange-tips, a Small White and a Brimstone. Two Small Tortoiseshells were at CF.

Black Redstart
Grizzled Skipper
David Campbell (photos 1-3), Andy Downing, Paul Goodman, Ian Jones, Ian Magness, Paul Manville, Robert Russell and Ian Ward (photo 4)

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22nd April 2017

Migrants at the farm included three Wheatears in Broadfield, a Willow Warbler by Reads Rest Cottages, a Meadow Pipit which flew from Owl Meadow and five Whitethroats. Two Mistle Thrushes were also noted on the north side.

A Whitethroat in Hillwood Field was the first of the spring in the BW sector, across which 16 Chiffchaffs were counted.

Two Dingy Skippers were to be found in Fames Rough and other BW butterflies included three Speckled Woods, three Peacocks, two Orange-tips, a Red Admiral, a Small White and six Brimstones.

Dingy Skipper at Fames Rough
Orange-tip at Fames Rough
Buff-tailed Bumblebee
Greater Celandine
Paul Goodman, Ian Magness (photo 4) and Ian Ward (photos 1-3)

21st April 2017

Broadfield attracted four Wheatears and a Willow Warbler was singing in Lunch Wood. Also logged at the farm were two Whitethroats, 10 Swallows and three Mistle Thrushes of note.

Paul Goodman, Ian Magness and Phil Wallace


Our Spring Migration Tour Saturday 29th April; meet at Canons Farmhouse. Starts 09:00, ends 12:00. 

20th April 2017

The only 'newsworthy' bird sightings were a Mistle Thrush in Broadfield, three Pied Wagtails at Legal & General and a BW sector Pheasant.

It was a better day for butterflies, with the first Grizzled Skipper and two Dingy Skippers of the year seen at Fames Rough, where there were no fewer than five Green Hairstreaks, a Speckled Wood and a Peacock. However, potentially much more exciting was an unconfirmed sighting of a Wall by the old tarmac dump at Lunch Wood - keep your eyes peeled there for the next few days!

Duncan Jennings, Ian Pratley and Woodchips

19th April 2017

Our latest spring Stonechat on record, a male, toured around Horse Pasture. Both of the Red-legged Partridges remained in Broadfield. Five Swallows skimmed around the farm and singles of Grey Heron and Mallard flew over. Two Little Owls were showing, at Horse Pasture and Legal & General.

Three Small Tortoiseshells and a Comma were noted.

♂ Stonechat

David Campbell (photo) and Ed Stubbs

18th April 2017

A Wheatear, five Swallows and two Mistle Thrushes were at the farm and two Lesser Black-backed Gulls flew over BW.

An Orange-tip was seen in the BW sector.

Duncan Jennings, Ian Pratley, Natasha Preston and Woodchips

17th April 2017

A bit of coverage at the farm late in the day revealed the first Whitethroat of the spring bursting into song briefly on the south side of Owl Meadow. Broadfield hosted three Wheatears in Broadfield, including a male showing features of the 'Greenland' form leucorhoa, and the pair of Red-legged Partridges. A Willow Warbler was singing in Lunch Wood and a Mistle Thrush was seen. Eight Swallows, a Grey Heron and five Mallards flew over.

♂ Wheatear showing features of form leucorhoa

David Campbell (photo), Ian Magness, Natasha Preston and Phil Wallace