I must admit to submitting to another day of muppetry today and instead of hitting Farmoor or some other water body for a displaced Kitty or Little Gull I took the family to Millet's Farm for soft play, a visit to the Lamas and hog roast. I did check the ponds there for a storm blown waif but overall my crimes against the cause were justifiably rewarded with seeing sweet FA during the return of the Beast. (I have actually got a secret mission to find a rarity at one of these family day out places).
I did venture around Worminghall for an hour or two yesterday and had Golden Plovers flying over the Old Vic and winter thrushes in the horse paddock. Also had Golden Plovers over the M40 on the way back from the gig.
Fieldfare in the paddock
Common Buzzard over Worminghall
Redwings in the paddock
Robin in the paddock
Rook at Millet's farm, also a few winter thrushes there and 3 Gadwall on the duck pond
Been mainly in doors this weekend, in the warm, but missing the action with the Beast 2. There was Stone Curlew and Little Gulls at Beddington yesterday. Had a worthy excuse though as performed with the boys at Sophie's 40th birthday party. We did a stripped down guitars and piano only set- mainly because I couldn't get the drums and the PA out of the loft and also because Matt came over to practise drums and bass and we went down the curry house instead. Hoping one of these decades we actually get our act together.
Interesting correspondence today with the Chair of the Beddington Farmlands Conservation Science Group (CSG), Dave Warburton. In light of the 5000 strong petition calling on Sutton Council to enforce planning conditions on Viridor and develop the Beddington Farmlands Nature Reserve I formally wrote to him and the CSG to ask for an official statement from the CSG to respond to the petition (as local councillors were responding in an inaccurate manner). I also suggested that unless the CSG takes a strong lead with enforcement and supports the local petition and local community than the CSG is nothing more than a front for the Viridor agenda. I've been a member of the CSG for nearly 10 years. Dave's response was to inform me that my position on the CSG is now untenable.
Had a good gulling session with Dave today- juvenile/first-winter Glaucous Gull, second-winter Iceland Gull, first-winter Caspian Gull, a third-winter and first-winter Yellow-legged Gull, a few 'argentatus' and a noticeable influx of Lesser-black backed Gulls. More from Dave HERE.
The other guys had the first Wheatear and Sand Martin for the year, 70+ Snipe and 6 Jack Snipe off the islands which are currently being worked on and a Woodcock.
First-winter Caspian Gull
Second-winter Iceland Gull
Juvenile/first-winter Glaucous Gull
Juvenile 'Northern' Herring Gull
The PochardxFerruginous Duck hybrid also back on the lake
Had 55 Redwing calls between 1030 and 1230 last night from the obs nocturnal migration recorder.
Certainly a few birds moving around at the moment with several interesting migrants across London including a Spoonbill along the Thames and then at Brent and Dunlin and Redshank at the farmlands today.
The very mild conditions last night were also good for moths with Oak Beauty, March Moth, a few micros and the first Common Quakers for the year.