Saturday, 4 May 2013

Late dawn

The Safari was on the North Blackpool Pond Trail at about 6.30 this morning ready to help lead a late Dawn Chorus Walk...tomorrow is International Dawn Chorus Day, not sure how that works in the international bit of the Southern hemisphere, but hey-ho, it was chilly in the wind but not to bad in the lee of the trees.
All the species present were singing, just not all at the same time which is a bit easier for novices to get their ear in unlike the real dawn chorus a coupe of hours earlier when everything is singing at the same time, adds to the overall experience but is hard to differentiate which voice is who's if you're not an ardent bird listener.
Almost straight way we heard an NBPT patch year bird, a Lesser Whitethroat always a nice find. Blackcap and 'ordinary' Whitethroat soon fell too.
When the crew arrived a Reed Bunting was 'zip zip zap zapping' in the nearest bush but we couldn't see it through the fresh new growth.
We walked along the trail listening at various points and having a look see at the other wildlife to be found like the almost open Bluebells and the multitudinous Grey Squirrels.
At the lake at the far end the Heron was almost hidden sat hunkered down on it's nest, a Sparrowhawk was seen carrying nesting material and a Great Crested Grebe provided some glamour. The 'wild-side' of the lake held both Reed Warbler and Sedge Warbler if a little confusingly at first it took the three most experienced of us a few minutes of concentrating to work out there were actually two birds present! They took our NBPT list to 59 for the year.
Also at the lake we saw the striking and very impressive wood sculpture for the first time.

There will be another one but not quite the same at our end of the trail shortly - one to look out for in the next few weeks.
We were out a full three enjoyable hours in the end.
After a lush brekkie of toasted crumpets Frank wanted to go out so we took him and saw the bees were out on our neighbours dry stone bank at last. not sure what the larger mining bee is but Gooden's Nomad Bees were also out.

Back at Base Camp a Wren was scuttling around the wood-store like a mouse and giving it plenty of vocal welly. Wifey spotted it disappearing into a defunct' upside-down tomato hanging basket by the garage doors. A sneaky peaky revealed a mossy ball hidden in the depths. Hope it survives there's a nasty looking tear top left that could give in any of the strong winds we get here...

It took a while to get a decent pic of him as being a Wren he just never sat still for a second.
Taken through dirty double glazing at a very acute angle

Not much else happening at Base Camp, a pair of Long Tailed Tits were seen in the front - not seen them round here for a few weeks, and three Swallows (Garden #30) tazzed over northbound.
Where to next? Another early start because the moth trap is out for the first time this year...blimey that's late!!!
In the meantime let us know who's vocal chords are being tested to their limit in your outback .

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