The big thing to look for this week is raptors. A quick look on Martin’s blog from the 4th of September last year reveals why.
According to form the northern tip of Tophill at Hempholme has been best for observations on a reasonably warm day (tomorrow?). The flight route takes birds from the North East and out over the fields to the West of Tophill – meaning you really need to set up a folding chair at ‘Top Lock’ and watch the skies.
A quick visit yesterday turned up a passing hobby:
And hunting sparrowhawk – but Martin has had more by spending a bit of time.
Cliff’s efforts to create a man-made thermal today clearly managed to attract one or possibly two ospreys over (this speck actually is one over D res on my mobile!:)
We have had a continuing movement of ospreys now for a couple of weeks. This is one of Alan Walkington's much better shots from earlier in the year:
Chances are raptors will be the target of Saturday mornings' monthly reserve walk at 10am.
In addition to raptors many other species have been moving through. Waders including ruff, dunlin, golden plover and green sandpiper have all been seen flying over – but few stopping to feed:
The passerine movement has included some good numbers of yellow wagtails:
Yesterday I managed to bag all three species in a walk along D res with the grey too:
South scrub is currently alive with moving warblers like this willow:
And many goldcrests – now is the time to try and find something rarer in amongst:
A few late emergents include this brimstone found by Derrick Venus and looking smashing
And Jeff Barker picked up a grey partridge family on the access road viewable here.
No-one was going to sneak up on these marsh/pool frogs:
And John Coish has kindly sent these pictures which are the best yet of our black-necked grebe - here clearly attempting to hide from a tufted duck using an obliging pochard – still present to at least yesterday and looking more wintery each time I look at it: