Thursday, 20 February 2014

Box End Park WeBS: 16/02/2014

I was just glad to be able to access the park for my Webs count this week. The previous weekend the entire park was under water so it was good to see some grass between the lake and the river when I arrived.

It was also great to see the first Oystercatcher of the year on site although with the island underwater it was limited as to where it could go. I hope the island appears in time to give it a chance to nest this year.

There were a number of areas of standing water between the lake and the river which had attracted Pied Wagtails and Meadow Pipits in to feed. This resulted in my highest site counts for these 2 species.

The Mute Swan count was also the highest for this species since I have been surveying this site. Quite surprised by that given they can go just about anywhere at the moment and find water!

Here are all the counts:

Black-headed Gull 26
Canada Goose 2
Cormorant 5
Grey Heron 2
Kestrel 1
Mallard 70
Meadow Pipit 16 (Also had 4 over)
Moorhen 1
Mute Swan 19
Oystercatcher 1
Pied/White Wagtail 33
Skylark 1

Monday, 17 February 2014

If you go down to the woods today....

... you will find a carpet of Snowdrops, well you will at Putnoe Wood in Mowsbury Park, Bedford.

Snowdrops by fallen tree
The Snowdrops can be found along the west side of the wood. Get down there soon and enjoy the show while it lasts.

On Sunday it was time for the monthly bird survey in the wood and a break in the weather tempted a few birds out. This Nuthatch surprised me by flying into the tree I was standing next to. It was just a few feet above me so I grabbed my camera and started shooting. These two photographs were the best of the bunch!


There were at least 3 "singing" Stock Doves in the wood and I managed this shot of one high up in the canopy, I love the iridescent green patch on the neck:

Stock Dove
Another surprise was a Moorhen calling from within the wood. They are always around the ponds on the golf course but I haven't had one in the wood before. A little less surprising when you see the ponds in the wood following all of the rain we have had recently. 

A Buzzard was a little less surprising, although a new species for the site since I started surveying, they are regularly in the area and eventually I was bound to catch up with one in the wood.

Here are the counts for the day:

Blackbird 7
Blue Tit 22
Buzzard 1
Carrion Crow 9
Chaffinch 6
Coal Tit 1
Dunnock 1
Goldfinch 7
Great Spotted Woodpecker 3
Great Tit 25
Green Woodpecker 2
Jackdaw 20
Magpie 3
Moorhen 1
Nuthatch 1
Redwing 20
Robin 8
Song Thrush 6
Stock Dove 3
Treecreeper 3
Woodpigeon 16
Wren 1