31st October 2017

This morning's skywatching session, over 3.75 hours from dawn, was made worthwhile by three individual Hawfinches and a mighty push of Redwings, totalling 2,550 birds making their way west/south-west. Also moving were 560 Fieldfares, 410 Starlings, a Mistle Thrush, 80 Chaffinches, nine redpolls, 13 Siskins, five Pied Wagtails, six Skylarks, 15 Meadow Pipits, 22 Goldfinches, two Grey Herons, eight Common Gulls, 170 Black-headed Gulls and 250 Herring Gulls. Also noted from Hither Field was a Red Kite, five Mallards and five Greenfinches; two Blackbirds and 15 Song Thrushes behaved as though they were migrants.

David Campbell

30th October 2017

A Hawfinch was seen from Hither Field and the CF sector held 72 Fieldfares, 27 Redwings, a Pied Wagtail, four Meadow Pipits, four Buzzards, a Kestrel, two Mistle Thrushes, 15 Skylarks, a Sparrowhawk, six Black-headed Gulls and two Little Owls.

Geoff Barter

29th October 2017

Another profitable 5-hour skywatching session from the top of Hither Field yielded 14 Hawfinches (including eight which flew out of The Nuttery), two Ravens north along the valley, 800 Redwings, 90 Fieldfares, a Red Kite, eight Siskins, 15 redpolls, five Pied Wagtails, 33 Meadow Pipits, eight Skylarks, 53 Chaffinches, 39 Goldfinches, six Greenfinches, seven Linnets, 170 Starlings, 50 Black-headed Gulls, five Lesser Black-backed Gulls, four Common Gulls and 600 Herring Gulls. Also seen from the position were singles of Tawny Owl, Rook and Kestrel, plus 10 Song Thrushes and six Buzzards. Another three redpolls were by Game Field.

Three Red Admirals flew through the BW sector.


David Campbell (photo), Christian Cogley, Darragh Culley, Paul Goodman, Simon Suter and Phil/Lynne Wallace

28th October 2017

The BW sector continued to produce the goods today, with a Firecrest found at Perrotts Larches and the Hawfinch influx perpetuated by four birds which flew into the recording area from Park Downs and into the Estate. Further sightings in the sector included four Siskins, two Pied Wagtails, a Mistle Thrush, 15 Fieldfares, 15 Redwings, six Meadow Pipits, five Skylarks, 80 Starlings and six Black-headed Gulls. A noteworthy total of 10 Mistle Thrushes arrived at CF late in the day, where a redpoll flew over and a male Stonechat was seen in Poultry Field. Five Fieldfares, four Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel, 30 Linnets, two Yellowhammers, two Meadow Pipits and a Greenfinch were also at the farm, while a Common Gull, 110 Herring Gulls and six Black-headed Gulls flew over.

A Red Admiral was seen in BW.

David Campbell, Paul Goodman, Natasha Preston and Ian Ward

27th October 2017

A thoroughly enjoyable 5.5-hour visible migration session from the top of Hither Field was headlined by 14 Hawfinches (perhaps as many as 17) and a Ring Ouzel, with a strong supporting cast of 12 Siskins, seven redpolls, a Red Kite, a Peregrine, two Yellowhammers, 210 Fieldfares, four Mistle Thrushes, 90 Redwings, 375 Starlings, 15 Skylarks, a Cormorant, a Grey Heron, 19 Lesser Black-backed Gulls, 75 Meadow Pipits, three Pied Wagtails, 130 Chaffinches, 38 Goldfinches, 10 Greenfinches, seven Linnets, 475 Woodpigeons, 550 Herring Gulls, a Common Gull and 20 Black-headed Gulls. Two Rooks, 11 Buzzards, two Sparrowhawks, a Kestrel and two Mallards were also noted from the position.

The farm received relatively light coverage but produced for it a further 20 Fieldfares, 20 Skylarks and two Little Owls.

Eight Red Admirals moved through the recording area today.

Geoff Barter, David Campbell, Paul Goodman, Ian Magness and Nick Tidmarsh

26th October 2017

An experimental visible migration session from the top end of the Harholt Plantation (perhaps an under-rated position for picking up movement?) came up trumps with a Hawfinch, two Bramblings (our 100th species this year), 145 Chaffinches, 40 Meadow Pipits, four Skylarks, a Mistle Thrush, 40 Redwings, 17 Song Thrushes and 10 Black-headed Gulls of note. Meanwhile, a flock of 22 Lesser Redpolls was feeding there, along with a late Chiffchaff. The only news from the farm concerned two Stonechats at Reads Bottom, plus a Peregrine and a Mistle Thrush.

Geoff Barter, David Campbell and Ian Magness

25th October 2017

The patch was not covered till late in the day but observations then kicked off with a Red Kite over Banstead Woods and a season-first was delivered when four Fieldfares dropped into a tree by Owl Meadow. 395 Black-headed Gulls, 63 Herring Gulls and a Common Gull flew towards their roost sites late on. The two Red-legged Partridges were located in the southwest corner of Broadfield East and a female Stonechat was feeding near Canons Farmyard. Also at the farm, four Pied Wagtails flew over, 42 Linnets bumbled around, a Mistle Thrush was in Lunch Wood and 15 Meadow Pipits, three Skylarks, three Yellowhammers, two Little Owls, 58 Rose-ringed Parakeets, four Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel and a Bullfinch were logged. Fames Rough attracted another Mistle Thrush. A frustrating sighting involved a would-be late departure date for either Swallow or House Martin as two silhouetted hirundines were seen motoring high and distantly south from behind and couldn't be confidently assigned to species.

Two Red Admirals were seen at the farm.

David Campbell and Ian Magness

24th October 2017

Banstead Woods provided a decent suite of migrants, topped by a Ring Ouzel calling deep within the yews at Fames Rough before it shot towards Perrotts Farm. Overhead passage in the sector involved eight Siskins, 27 redpolls, 10 Chaffinches, a Skylark, seven Meadow Pipits, three Mistle Thrushes, 115 Redwings, 16 Goldfinches and two Common Gulls. 27 Goldcrests were counted on a limited route. At the farm, there were three further Mistle Thrushes in Broadfield, a Pied Wagtail and two Meadow Pipits overhead, as well as four Skylarks, four Yellowhammers, a Kestrel and a Buzzard.

David Campbell and Ian Magness

23rd October 2017

Considering the mass inundation of Hawfinches into the country over the last couple of weeks, it is little surprise that coverage of Banstead Woods produced a party of three overflying birds this morning, just our third recent record. There should be more of these to come... Overhead passage in the sector also involved a Grey Wagtail, two Siskins, six redpolls, two Meadow Pipits and 15 Redwings. A Grey Heron flew from Park Farm and two Greenfinches were noted. Selected counts of commoner birds included 21 Goldcrests, 10 Song Thrushes and seven Treecreepers.

Three Skylarks and a Buzzard were noted at the farm.

David Campbell and Ian Ward

22nd October 2017

BW sightings included over-flying Siskin, Greenfinch, Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail and Common Gull (all singletons), as well as three Stonechats in Hither Field, three Buzzards and a Kestrel.

A noticeable passage of Lesser Black-backed Gulls took place over the farm in the late afternoon, with 20 birds counted, along with nine Black-headed Gulls and 44 Herring Gulls. Birds in the CF sector included the Barn Owl, two male Stonechats, a late Chiffchaff, a Skylark, 120 Starlings, 50 Linnets, two Yellowhammers, a Sparrowhawk and three Buzzards.

One Red Admiral was noted at CF.

David Campbell, Paul Goodman, Phil Wallace and Ian Ward

15th October 2017

The first redpoll of the autumn flew over the Harholt Plantation and nearby two Stonechats were seen in Hither Field. Fly-overs at BW included four Redwings, three Lesser Black-backed Gulls, a Black-headed Gull, three Rooks, nine Meadow Pipits and a Pied Wagtail. Also present there were two Buzzards, a Kestrel and a Sparrowhawk. CF also had a Pied Wagtail, plus a Chiffchaff and a Bullfinch.

Two Red Admirals and a Peacock were logged in the CF sector. A Brown Hairstreak was seen in the Harholt Plantation, a Meadow Brown was in Hither Field and a Southern Hawker visited Piddly Pond.

Ian Ward

14th October 2017

The first 15 Redwings of the autumn were an overdue sighting at the farm, where a Mistle Thrush, a Chiffchaff, two male Stonechats, six Meadow Pipits, 80 Linnets, 10 Yellowhammers, eight Skylarks and a Lesser Black-backed Gull were among the other notables logged.

Andy Downing and Paul Goodman

8th October 2017

The CF sector produced three Stonechats, the two Red-legged Partridges, four Little Owls, six Meadow Pipits, 12 Skylarks and three Yellowhammers. Four Buzzards were noted.

Andy Harding and Ian Ward

7th October 2017

The two Red-legged Partridges were seen again at the farm, along with a Stonechat, four Buzzards, a Kestrel and a Yellowhammer.

Simon Hammond

12th October 2017

Four Stonechats, four House Martins and two Swallows were seen at the farm.

Stonechats at Reads Bottom

Ian Magness

6th October 2017

Sorry but this will be the last update for at least a couple of weeks due to DKC being away in Ethiopia... Do visit the farm in the meantime to keep up the coverage and, if/when there is wifi, the Twitter feed (@cfbwbirds) will be updated with any significant news. Thanks!

Overhead movement at the farm during the latter half of the morning involved a Snipe, a male Reed Bunting, seven Pied Wagtails and nine Meadow Pipits. 10 Skylarks and 40 Linnets were noted and a male Stonechat flicked along the east side of Horse Pasture, where a Little Owl announced itself. The adult male Peregrine returned and had a pop at some Feral Pigeons over Infront George. One Chiffchaff was by Canons Farmhouse. Four Buzzards, two Kestrels, three Yellowhammers and a Black-headed Gull were also in the sector.

adult ♂ Peregrine

David Campbell (photo) and Linda Mount

3rd October 2017

Overhead passage at the farm involved six Pied Wagtails, 20 Chaffinches and five Meadow Pipits. 20 Skylarks were on the deck. BW had two Wheatears and three Meadow Pipits in Hither Field, along with two Mistle Thrushes, a Sparrowhawk and two Buzzards in the sector.

A Clouded Yellow was at Fames Rough and other BW butterflies were a Common Blue, Brimstone, a Comma, five Red Admirals and five Meadow Browns. A Southern Hawker was at Fames Rough.

Clouded Yellow
♂ Common Blue

Steve Gale, Duncan Jennings (photos) and WoodChips Conservation Volunteers

2nd October 2017

CF had a Chiffchaff, three Skylarks, eight Buzzards, a Kestrel, a Sparrowhawk, a Little Owl and the regular Tawny Owl in Lunch Wood. Another Tawny Owl was vocal in BW, where a late Willow Warbler and 10 House Martins were noted, along with another Buzzard.

Geoff Barter and Linda Mount

1st October 2017

The two Red-legged Partridges were still in Broadfield and the Barn Owl was still at the farm, where two Mistle Thrushes, a Stonechat, 12 Meadow Pipits, a Pied Wagtail, a Little Owl, two Kestrels, five Buzzards, two Black-headed Gulls, 39 Herring Gulls, two Kestrels, three Rooks, eight Skylarks, two Chiffchaffs, 300 Linnets and three Yellowhammers were also recorded.

David Campbell and Steve Gale

29th September 2017

The CF sector provided two Red-legged Partridges, a Hobby, a Mistle Thrush, three Chiffchaffs, a Pied Wagtail, 13 Meadow Pipits, 100 Swallows, nine Skylarks, two Buzzards and six Yellowhammers. The Tawny Owl was on view in Lunch Wood.

A Brown Hairstreak was seen alongside Doric Field.

Geoff Barter and Ian Ward

28th September 2017

The Barn Owl, 250 Swallows, 75 Skylarks, a Blackcap, six Chiffchaffs, 250 Linnets and six Yellowhammers were logged at CF, along with a count of 20 Dunnocks.

Steve Gale

26th September 2017

The Barn Owl, a late Whitethroat, a Whinchat, five Stonechats, six Yellowhammers, 13 Skylarks, three Rooks, six Chiffchaffs, the Lunch Wood Tawny Owl, a Little Owl, four Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk and a Kestrel were noted in the CF sector. BW had two Rooks and a Kestrel of note.

A Clouded Yellow was at BW and other butterflies in the recording area included two Commas, two Peacocks, a Red Admiral, two Brimstones, three Small White, four Large Whites, two Small Heaths, six Meadow Browns and a Small Copper. A Common Darter was at BW and a Migrant Hawker at CF.

♀ Stonechat

Steve Gale (photos), Duncan Jennings, Ian Ward and WoodChips Conservation Volunteers

25th September 2017

A Spotted Flycatcher at the farm was a nice late record and other highlights there included two Whinchats, a Grey Wagtail, the Barn Owl and four Stonechats.

Steve Gale

24th September 2017

Highlights at the farm included a Grey Wagtail, two Whinchats, two Stonechats, a Willow Warbler, a Red Kite, two Peregrines and the Barn Owl. Among the other bits noted were three Chiffchaffs, five Meadow Pipits, two Common Gulls, 15 Swallows, a Little Owl, 40 Linnets, six Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk and two Kestrels.

A Clouded Yellow was at CF and other butterfly sightings on patch were four Red Admirals, three Speckled Woods, a Meadow Brown, three Large Whites, a Small White and two Brimstones. An Emperor, two Migrant Hawkers and a Common Darter were the odonata.

Geoff Barter and Natasha Preston