DURING CORONAVIRUS LOCKDOWN
Small flock of Fieldfare in the trees across the fields behind us. Full extension of camera lens to identify the birds on the computer. Sure sign winters nearly here.
Within the bird watching group we have encouraged the members to keep in touch and share their stories/walks and photos, below are a few of their replies. Also a poem about a song thrush.
RSPB Langford Lowfields
Our Bird watching and wildlife visit was to RSPB Langford Lowfields near Newark. Observing social distancing and the rule of 6 we had a lovely sunny morning. A walk from the car park through the woods, where fungi were spotted, and hedged lanes saw us t the old gravel pits. A one way system was in place with very few people around. All the normal ducks/Geese were seen along with Heron, Kestrel, Cormorant, Mute swan, Blue and Great tit. Various warblers were heard but not seen, as is often the case. After a mornings spotting we all headed for home.
Stalking heron shaggy parasols
I had an early walk (5.00 am) up Long Lane, Moorgreen yesterday. The early morning sun rise looked fabulous accompanied by the dawn chorus. With numerous Whitethroats, Yellowhammer and Blackbirds. There was a Buzzard regally sitting in a tree with Blackbirds squawking giving him what for. But the most amazing thing I saw was seven Hares in the crop fields. I have only ever seen the odd one or two before.
Had a walk around Aldercar/Erewash floods to get my bird fix. You may remember the number of ducks we see when we go there early in the year. You could count on one hand the ducks that are there now … BUT .” the musical sound of the migrants which are now resident is just beautiful. Maybe we need to go later in the year?
Walking by Moorgreen Reservoir
Our blue tits chicks have fledged and we have some photos of the parents going in and out but missed the chick being fed on the branch of a tree. Our hedgehogs give us great pleasure and we capture them on cameras inside and outside the feeding box. I have a few recent photos below of Ol’ One Eye our returning male, who is blind in one eye (hence the name) and has many tricks. He tends to eat his fill, lie in the bowl and have a nap before having a good scratch and going off. We found that a feeding box was essential as the cats eat the food otherwise (see bottom picture of a few years ago, before we perfected the entry). Chris made a wooden box which has a dog leg pipe entrance. We feed them dog food and meal worms.
We walked across the fields to Watnall Woods this morning. We had some bird food so put it on the bird tables and sat for a while to watch the birds. There were blue tits,great tits and a jay who visited and a cheeky squirrel also had a feast. There are a few photos below. In the fields we saw a lapwing and heard a skylark.
Robin chicks in our garage have now fledged and had a visit from the local Peacock
Some of mine from either Watnall woods or Brinsley Headstocks or local to me.
BY ROBERT BROWNING
Oh, to be in England
Now that April’s there,
And whoever wakes in England
Sees, some morning, unaware,
That the lowest boughs and the brushwood sheaf
Round the elm-tree bole are in tiny leaf,
While the chaffinch sings on the orchard bough
And after April, when May follows,
And the whitethroat builds, and all the swallows!
Hark, where my blossomed pear-tree in the hedge
Leans to the field and scatters on the clover
Blossoms and dewdrops—at the bent spray’s edge—
That’s the wise thrush; he sings each song twice over,
Lest you should think he never could recapture
The first fine careless rapture!
And though the fields look rough with hoary dew,
All will be gay when noontide wakes anew
The buttercups, the little children’s dower
—Far brighter than this gaudy melon-flower!
Reports of recent events.
January 2020 – Shipley Park
Our visit to Shipley park on the 16th January 2020 was one of the recent days it didn’t rain! Walking from the visitors centre to Derby lodge very few birds were spotted, Carrion crow, Wood pigeon and Black headed gull. Walking through the woods at Derby lodge onto the old manor ruins Robin, Blue tit, Great tit, Long tailed tit, and Grey squirrel were seen. We were looking for Hawfinch which sometimes are located near the ruins. Unfortunately not today. We popped into Derby lodge for refreshments before heading to Osbournes pond. Mistle thrush and Magpie were viewed on our way to the pond where all our normal ducks/ geese were there along with Mute swan, Goosander and Muscovy.
17 species were recorded. Paul and Chrys Millington
Where we were going to go in 2020
20th February – Rufford Park, Ollerton NG22 9DF
19th March – Aldercar Flashes
16th April – Langford Lowfields, NG23 7QL RSPB (Newark)
21st May – Attenborough, NG9 6DY Notts wildlife trust
18th June – Skylarks, NG12 2LU Holme Pierrepont
16th July – Carsington Reservoir Sheepwash
20th August – Potteric Carr, DN4 8DB Yorkshire wildlife trust (Doncaster)
17th September – Dearne Valley Old Moor, S73 0YF RSPB (Barnsley)
15th October – Willington/Calke Abbey, DE65 6YB National trust
19th November – Kingsmill Reservoir, NG17 4PA Notts county council
17th December – Brinsley headstocks