Monday, 25 April 2011

Ashridge Forest and Croxley Moor

Lewis picked me up 0700 hrs and we were viewing Wood Warbler in poor light,it was singing near thee pond just before the monument,four birders were there including us an old friend Graham from Wat RSPB about 30 years ago.
Prior to arrival we saw a party of Fallow deer grazing,we left around 0800rs for Croxley moor for the devishly elusive gropper on arrival Kay Marriot had heard it briefly as did we ,we grilled the moor finding a variety of warblers ,while watching a reed warbler I saw a carp spawning in the reeds,finally Paul Lewis and I saw a pair of Lesser Whitethroats on leaving.
Late afternoon painting garden furniture overhead sparrowhawk ,red kite and at 1800hrs  8 Waxwing were calling from the tree at the bottom of the garden.

Monday, 18 April 2011

Woodoaks Farm and Stockers Lake with BBWT

Around 1200hrs on Sat, 10 hearty souls met at Denham Way and proceeded to Woodoaks farm,nimbus clouds gathered on the horizon as we made our way through the barns noting barn owl pellets.and
We were soon being entertained by the regular Red kite and a few aerial skylarks,across the fields a few Stock dove obliged along with Pheasant. We scanned the orchard in vain for Little Owl but heard the Yellowhammers call of " a little bit of bread and no cheese" in the distant Hawthorn an Blackthorn hedgerows dissecting the field.
On leaving a single swallow obliged ,walking to Springwell lane a pair of Chaffinch were setting up territory in the hedge near Froghall farm
At Springwell lane met G.Lapworth who gave us more bird info,red eared terrapin appeared on Inns GP as did 2 more on Stockers,we galloped off for cuckoos but got 3 red crested pochards and a Reed warbler singing in the phragmites before lunch,later at the causeway Common terns were displaying and Sedge warbler and Reed bunting had obliged,hirundines were not at a premium however a party of House martin showed briefly.
Stockers farm held swallows and Sparrows but no wheatear,we carried on canal side of Stockers to see a wealth of warblers including Garden , from the kingfisher hide a Kestrel was in the nest box ,originally put up for Stock doves,notable wildfowl was a rather late female Goldeneye.

We reluctantly retraced our steps through Inns GP and back ti Denham Way around 1600 hrs.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

April brings Migrants and breeding birds

On Sunday the 3rd six blackcaps were at Maple Lodge and a Little Owl was at Woodoaks farm.The following day it was 8 Blackcaps and 3 Common snipe,on the 6th a Wheatear obliged at Woodoaks farm.At Stockers on the 8th with Lewis 7 Common Tern and a male Wheatear on Stockers farm.
Three venues produced good birds ie Croxley Moor the Withey Beds and Stockers again.

Three Whitethroat along the Gade in the scub skulking were difficult,a Cuckoo heard in adjacent Croxley Woods,finally the icing on the cake a male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker excavating a nest in an Alder along the River Colne.