24 October 2016

Narrow-winged Grey: 24 October

Found this Narrow-winged Grey Eudonia angustea, a late flying species, at the porch light last night. More common on the coast where it is found in sand dunes, this is the first record for the garden. Does it warrant its own post? Of course it doesn't, but there's bugger all else wildlife-wise going on in this neck of the woods this autumn so I'll take what I can get!

Narrow-winged Grey Eudonia angustea, Worcester Park, 24 October 2016

22 October 2016

Staines Moor: 22 October

A few hours on the patch today was slightly better than of late (not that this was difficult to achieve). On Staines Moor, 1+ Water Pipit along the Colne (the first returning bird), 1 Jack Snipe (flushed from the Colne), and 1 Short-eared Owl (hunting over the east side late afternoon) were the highlights.

Also noted on Staines Moor were 7 Stonechat (4m, 2f, 1f/imm m), 8 Goldcrest, 4 Chiffchaff, 1+ Grey Wagtail (Colne), 1 Kingfisher (Colne), 1-2 Little Grebe (Colne), 1+ Little Egret (Colne), 1f Pied Wagtail (Colne), 3+ Skylark, 3 Greenfinch (2m, 1f), 21 Meadow Pipit, 3 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2+ Song Thrush, 1m Reed Bunting, 3-5 Red Kite, 1 Eurasian Sparrowhawk, 1H Cetti's Warbler (south end of Bonehead Ditch) and a Red Fox.

Vis mig was poor with just 1 Siskin W, 1 redpoll sp H, 2 Chaffinch W, 2 Goldfinch W, 4 Great Spotted Woodpecker (2N, 2W), 5 Northern Lapwing N, 28 Common Starling NW and 4 Woodpigeon S. Yawn!

Record of today's Jack Snipe at Staines Moor

Stanwell Moor added 4 Common Pochard W.

Weather: Overcast in the morning (8 oktas) with sunny periods in the afternoon (6 oktas), light NNW wind becoming NNE in the afternoon, some very light rain in afternoon.

12 October 2016

Staines snore: 12 October

A few very quiet hours at the bore this afternoon produced... know what, today was so crap I really can't be arsed to write it up. 

9 October 2016

Staines Moor: 9 October

A long mid morning to dusk session at the patch today. Staines Moor produced 1 Short-eared Owl briefly early afternoon then hunting over the east side at dusk (presumably the bird reported yesterday), 12-14 Stonechat (6m, 5m 1 undetermined), 2-3 Siskin (including a male drinking at Butts Pond and 2 off from here high south), 2 Little Grebe (first returning wintering birds on the Colne), 6+ (1H) Goldcrest (5 Bonehead Woodland), 12 (1H) Common Chiffchaff (mainly Bonehead Woodland), 3 (1f, 2H) Blackcap, 3-4 Barn Swallow mainly S, 2 Common Snipe, c. 30 Meadow Pipit (east side), 3H Cetti's Warbler, 1+ Kingfisher (Bonehead Ditch), 1 Red Kite, 2 Kestrel (including 1 attempting to catch Goldfinches), 1 Eurasian Sparrowhawk, 3-4 Common Buzzard, 9 Linnet and 2 Pied Wagtail (Colne).

Stanwell Moor added 5 (2H) Common Chiffchaff, 1 Common Teal and a Red Fox.

I was really hoping to find Staines Moor's first ever Yellow-browed Warbler this year, especially after the recent influx, but was beaten to it yesterday by Rob Innes (very well done to Rob on an excellent find). The bird was also reported today - I blanked it.

Weather: Sunny periods, little cloud in the morning (1 okta) becoming cloudier in the afternoon (6 oktas), light easterly wind.

24 September 2016

Staines Moor: 24 September

Another dull as hell day trudging around the moor seeing very few birds - birding in Surrey is so exciting! 'Highlights' were: 1 Whinchat (NW corner), 3+m Stonechat (1 NW corner, 2 east side), 2 (1m, 1f) Yellow Wagtail (NW corner), 14 Meadow Pipit, 2 Blackcap, 10 Chiffchaff (inc. 6 Bonehead Woodland), 5 Common Snipe, 1 Goldcrest (Bonehead Woodland), 5 Skylark, 1-2 Little Egret, 1 Eurasian Sparrowhawk, 1 Common Buzzard, 3 Kestrel and 2H Cetti's Warbler. Passage overhead amounted to 83 House Martin SW and 21 Barn Swallow (mainly S). Also 1 Red Kite and 3 more Common Buzzard were seen at distance over Wraysbury Reservoir.

First Parasol Mushroom Macrolepiota procera of the autumn noted today and a few Snowy Inkcap Coprinopsis nivea, and only 7 Red Admirals were seen on Staines Moor today - an amazing 530+ were present just 16 days ago!

Snowy Inkcap Coprinopsis nivea, on dung, Staines Moor, 24 September 2016 - a few of these tiny delicate toadstools today

Parasol Mushroom Macrolepiota procera, Staines Moor, 24 September 2016

A Speckled Wood in the garden on the 14th was one of very few records for the garden.

14 September 2016

Staines Moor: 14 September

A few more migrants at Staines Moor today in unseasonally hot conditions. Migrants on the ground included 4 Whinchat (3 SE corner, 1 NW corner), 1m Stonechat (SE corner) - the first of the autumn, 13+ Yellow Wagtail around the livestock (with others overhead), 1-2 Common Snipe (calling high over the Colne early morning), 2 Northern Lapwing (also over the Colne early morning), 1 Sedge Warbler (beside Colne), 40 Meadow Pipit and 2+ Common Whitethroat.

Some movement overhead with 20 Meadow Pipit S, 63 Barn Swallow (mainly S), and 1 imm. m Eurasian Sparrowhawk WSW.

1 of 4 Whinchats at Staines Moor today

1 of a single flock of 11 Yellow Wagtail, including males, females and juveniles, around the horses on Staines Moor today

Also noted were 1+ Hobby, 1-2 Kingfisher, 2 Little Egret, 5 Reed Bunting, 2 Skylark, 8 Linnet, 2 Red Kite, 3 Kestrel, 2-3 Common Buzzard and 1+ Grey Heron.

Still plenty of Red Admirals around in the NW corner, although much fewer than my last visit, and 7 were seen migrating (mainly S), and 1 Small Copper, 4 Small Heath and a Meadow Brown were logged. Stanwell Moor added a few more Red Admirals along the Colne Valley Way.

8 September 2016

Staines Moor: 8 September

A little better for migrants at Staines Moor today with 2 Whinchat, 6 Yellow Wagtail (around the livestock), 2 Sand Martin S, 118 Barn Swallow S (then W from mid afternoon) noted, and 2 Common Whitethroat and 1H Lesser Whitethroat in the hawthorns (which could be local birds). Also noted were 1-2 Hobby, 1 Red Kite, 4+ Skylark, 8 Meadow Pipit, 3 Reed Bunting, c50 Goldfinch (including many juveniles feeding on the thistles) and c100 Eurasian Starling (mainly around the livestock).

Red Admiral butterflies once again stole the show, with an amazing 530+ counted around the blackberries in the NW corner, west side, along the old railway, and in the NE corner, amounting to a spectacular sight. Their origin is a bit of mystery. They are very fresh and so presumably hatched fairly locally, and I suppose they are heading south stopping to feed on the abundance of blackberries currently on the moor. In addition another 24 Red Admirals were seen along the Colne Valley Way through Stanwell Moor in the morning.

Other butterflies on Staines Moor today include 1 Painted Lady (feeding with Red Admirals), 4 Small Copper, 9 Small Heath, 3 Comma and 2 Speckled Wood. Several Migrant Hawkers Aeshna mixta were also noted.

On Stanwell Moor 3 (2H) Chiffchaff were also noted.

Painted Lady Vanessa cardui feeding on blackberries with about 20 Red Admirals Vanessa atalanta in the NW corner of Staines
Moor today. Heading north or south I wonder?

Red Admirals Vanessa atalanta feeding on blackberries, Staines Moor, 8 September 2016