Thursday, 11 June 2015

More Wood Warblers at Yarner Wood

The original plan had been to head down to The Lizard in Cornwall with Mavis and Mike on June 1st to look for choughs but with some nasty weather forecast to arrive at lunchtime we switched plans and headed East for a morning walk at Yarner Wood.

It was grey and cloudy and breezey and cool but at least it was dry. The birding was heavy going in the poor weather and poor light conditions but we did eventually see all our target birds except for spotted flycatcher.

We heard a few quiet and brief trills of wood warblers before one bird sang strongly for a short time but we couldn't find it in the tree foliage. A second bird also sang strongly for a brief time elsewhere in the wood and we managed a brief view as it flew acroos the footpath. It had leg rings, different to those on the birds I saw in May - silver and orange on the left leg, green over yellow on right leg. I hadn't expected to see any wood warblers so I was quite pleased with our brief views.

On the Heath two tree pipits and a whitethroat were songflighting, a yellowhammer was briefly singing and a male stonechat was feeding a fledgling. A willow warbler gave some lovely views feeding in the birch trees.

Around the pond 3 male and a female Mandarin duck were seen - 1 male was moulting in to eclipse plumage and the female was with just one duckling. A pair of grey wagtails were with two fledglings and a pair of bullfinch came down for a drink. A female great spotted woodpecker and a marsh tit were attempting to pick out the last nuts and seeds in the empty feeders in front of the hide.

Male Mandarin Duck

Male Mandarin Duck in eclipse

Grey Squirrel

Pied flycatchers were seen and heard throughout the Wood including a pair feeding young in a nest box by the car park. Another pair elsewhere in the Wood were feeding young in a nest box too but these young must have been older as they were very noisey as we walked by. A male redstart was seen with a beakful of food and at least 6 song thrush were heard singing with 1 seen. A fledgling blackcap and some fledgling coal tits being fed by their parents were also found in the undergrowth.

Male Pied Flycatcher

Female Pied Flycatcher

The rain duly arrived at 2pm and so we headed off home, having had an enjoyable walk although it was unusually cold for the time of year and I hadn't seen one butterfly or moth.

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