Monday, 6 May 2013

A sunny bank holiday Monday morning

Surely not I hear you say but yes a beautiful morning and I was out the door before 0600 to make the most of it. I headed down to Kempston Mill and spotted JAs car in the car park. A quick exchange of texts and I caught up with him at the metal bridge up stream at Church End having already heard my first Lesser Whitethroat of the day along around the bypass bridge over on the Church Walk side of the river.

It was to be a day of Lesser Whitethroats, a bird I seldom require more then a couple of fingers to count at the sites I visit regularly!  We had our second of the day in the hedgerow along the road side at Biddenham Loop CP. The third was in the hedgerow by the footpath between Queens Park and Kempston Mill.

All of the other migrants were present in small numbers including a Willow Warbler which was showing well along the north side of the golf course.

Willow Warbler

Other birds of note were a pair of Linnets along the footpath between the new builds at Great Denham and a displaying Lapwing over the flood relief pools a little further along the same footpath.

Grey Heron
Having spotted this heron at some distance we waited as it appeared to be coming towards us and we were rewarded with a fly over.

I also found a possible Treecreeper nest along the riverside path down stream from the Mill. I saw one bird carrying food and another or same with nest material so I will keep an eye on the tree they appeared to be favouring.

Later I went up to Mowsbury Hillfort NR and had my fourth Lesser Whitethroat of the day. I heard it singing when I got out of the car in the car park and found it along the footpath up the west side of the outer meadow. I probably spent the best part of an hour with this bird as it moved around the reserve but failed to get a clear view in the entire time. Brimstone, Peacock and Orange Tip butterflies were seen along with one or more whites but I couldn't determine which. I also spotted my first Hornet of the year along the east side of the farmers field while I was following the Whitethroat around. Mallard and Moorhen were added to the site bird list, the ponds providing suitable habitat for these species this year. At least all of the rain last year was good for something!