Tuesday, 30 November 2010


Tuesday 30 November 2010

Filled the feeder at the Watercress Beds.  The usual birds were still around (Water Rail and Green Sandpiper), the only slightly unusual birds were Black Headed Gulls and a Pied Wagtail.  I am always surprised how infrequently I see Pied.  Also unusually the gulls were drinking and washing in the beds.  Not a great deal of open water available at the moment and some were even taking advantage of puddles on Firebrass Road by the pig farm.  Also a Kestrel posing for me.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Battle Farm

Monday 29 November 2010

On an extremely cold and frosty morning I tackled my regular monthly survey round the fields at Battle Farm, Preston Crowmarsh.  A nice little covey of 11 Grey Partridges, 35 Fieldfare and 22 Redwing were the best of the 437 birds of 29 species noted.  I also noticed some movement of Lapwings with 5 groups totalling 114 individuals heading to the south at high altitude.  I probably missed loads as I was concentrating on trees and bushes rather than looking high up in the sky.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Ewelme & Warburg

Sunday 28 November 2010

Morning visit to the Watercress Beds to top up the feeders - the usual Water Rail/s & Green Sandpiper which allowed a couple of poor distant photos.
Not much to report from the afternoon visit to the superb Warburg Nature Reserve though a small flock of Siskin was seen feeding in the top of a Silver Birch tree as well as good numbers of members of the tit family, including Marsh and Coal, on feeders.

Friday, 26 November 2010

Swyncombe area

Thursday 26 November 2010

Spent the morning carrying out one of my Atlas bird surveys between Swyncombe, Britwell Hill and Cookley Green.  Most noteworthy by the numbers of "white rumped" birds - 4 Jays, 10 Brambling and 4 Bullfinches.  Also lots of winter thrushes, Redwing and Fieldfare.  Note for future reference - walking up Britwell Hill is not easy!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Linky Down

Wednesday 24 November 2010

After a quick walk round the Watercress beds where I have brief views of Water Rail and Green Sandpiper I drove up to Linky Down - just past Cowleaze Wood.  The bushes were alive with Redwings (pictured), Fieldfares, Brambling and Bullfinches (also pictured).  Perhaps if the cold spell continues they might be tempted down to lower ground and our gardens?

Monday, 22 November 2010

Preston Crowmarsh

Monday 22 November 2010

My daughter came across this on the way to work this morning.  It was on the side of the road through Preston Crowmarsh near the footpath down to the weir.  I am always surprised how small these are, especially the males, when I see them up close.  Not sure what caused its demise but probably either hit by a car or flew into overhead cables.

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Benson Garden

Sunday 21 November 2010

Siskin, female, in the garden at lunchtime.  Unfortunately gone by the time I had found the camera so took one of a Goldfinch instead.


Sunday 21 November 2010

27 species on my count of the Watercress Beds this morning including Blackcap (a female), Sparrowhawk and a Green Sandpiper.

Saturday, 20 November 2010

Thames at benson

Saturday 20 November 2010

A muddy walk on a grey day along the Thames path towards Shillingford was somewhat enlivened by 3 female Goosanders - they were obviously very camera shy as my best efforts came to nought and they were last seen flying downstream.  There were also three Great Crested Grebes on the river and a large flock of Canada Geese in the field alongside the main road.

Friday, 19 November 2010


Friday 19 November 2010

My monthly WeBS count of the seven lakes at Dorchester today.  Atotal of 1986 birds of 18 species.  The highlights were 402 Wigeon and 3 Red-crested Pochards.  Although fairly common on the lakes in the Stanton Harcourt area I rarely see RC Pochards at Dorchester.  A rather poor photo is shown.


Thursday 18 November 2010

A quiet birdcount at the Watercress Beds slightly enlivened by Goldcrest and Green Woodpecker.

Wednesday, 17 November 2010


Wednesday 17 November 2010

No time for wildlife observations - busy planting 105+ trees at Ewelme with 9 volunteers.

Tuesday, 16 November 2010


Tuesday 16 November 2010

Not much to report - garden full of Goldfinches eating me out of house and home and joined by other regulars including Blue, Great and Coal Tit, Greenfinch and Chaffinch.  A quick look at Ewelme which was quiet, the only bird of note being the pictured Sparrowhawk.  It appeared wet so it may have been drying off from a dip in the stream.
Returned this afternoon to do some preparation work for tree planting tomorrow and flushed a green Sandpiper from the beds - first sighting of the winter. 

Sunday, 14 November 2010


Sunday 14 November 2010

Son took me to Otmoor but damp with poor visability did not help.  Raven, Common Sandpiper and singing Cettis Warbler were the best we could manage.  Others had seen Otters earlier and Bearded Tits but not for us.

Friday, 12 November 2010

A few new birds for the list

Friday 12 November 2010

Star sightings today were a Mistle Thrush and two Water Rails chasing one another and screaming briefly. A rather attractive fungi seen growing on a fallen Willow which I am trying to identify and will add as and when.

Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Another new bird for my Ewelme 2010 list

Wednesday 10 November 2010

Added Redwing, feeding on Hawthorn berries, to my list during a quick visit to fill the feeders.  Filling nearly every day at the moment and costing a fortune.  The Moorhens, Water Rail, Robin and Dunnock taking advantage of messy eaters by waiting underneath the the feeders.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

New birds for year

Tuesday 9 November 2010

Don't get too excited my Ewelme year starts on November 1.  Still - there was some quality there with Water Rail, Kingfisher, Song Thrush and Pheasant.  Spent afternoon reducing very large fallen branch from Ash tree at top end of meadow.  Nice little covey of 10 Grey Partridges on way back to Benson.

Monday, 8 November 2010

Rain, rain and lots more rain

Monday 8 November 2010

Cherry tree has one remaining leaf which I have been watching for most of the day.  Bet it will fall during the night and I'll miss it!

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Coal Tits

Sunday 7 November 2010

Guided walk at Ewelme this morning.  Only 8 visitors but they all seemed to enjoy it.  As well as the regular Coal Tit/s in the garden one showed up on the feeder at Ewelme this morning.  Quite an unusual sighting at the Watercress beds.

Friday, 5 November 2010

Garden sightings

Friday 5 November 2010

Weather and painful hip (too much gardening) prevented Ewelme trip but some good birds in the garden including 2 Coal Tits and a Goldfinch.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Wallingford Green Gym

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Wallingford GG working at the Watercress Beds this morning - clearing nettles and weeds from around shrubs.  Exceedingly good cake!

Monday, 1 November 2010

Birds and Fungi

Beautiful sunny day for counting the birds at Ewelme.  Unfortunately they were not really cooperating.  Best of the 20 species seen was a male Bullfinch and two Mistle Thrushes.  The fungi growing on the stump of a walnut tree proved to be a Velvet Shank, or so I'm told by an expert on ISpot.