Saturday, 28 March 2009

Saturday 28th March

Back into work today - yep I know it's a weekend but we haven't managed to breed a line that flowers 5 days then stpos fot two! I walked from East Malling village across the Research Station land to the glasshouses complex. It was very cold with squally showers and so I shouldn't have been suprised to see 32 Fieldfares and 7 Redwings flying over the churchyard orchard. Not too far from here people are seeing Swallows!

I had to return again later in the day so I paid a quick visit to Ditton Quarry around 16:00 to check out the Redpoll situation. Five Lesser Black-backed Gulls dipped in and out of the sky and a Song Thrush sang from the shrubbery. Being careful, after Tuesdays mistake (!), I located a flock of 8+ Redpoll feeding on the ground near the alder trees in the SW corner of the site. Bingo - I quickly picked out a Mealy Redpoll amongst them, instantly recognisable by it's more 'washed-out' appearance and bulkier, larger size. I attempted some photos but the flock were very flighty, often taking cover in a nearby willow, and not tolerant of me approaching too close. After watching them for a good 10 minutes or so they took flight as a Kestrel loomed overhead.
After pollinating, and with more rain clouds looming, I scanned across the nearby ploughed area next to the new experimental Pear Orchard. I was hoping for something out of the ordinary -but a cock Pheasant with a harem of four hens was all I was rewarded with. For some reason the male Pheasant kept lying low in the mud, not for my benefit I'm sure. Driving back to Barming I saw more hen Pheasants and 8+ BH Gulls in the field adjacent to St Margaret's Church.
From this...... this. What was he up to?!

1 comment:

Warren Baker said...

Not a bad day at work Adam! I think the pheasant is ''hiding'' the're not the brightest of birds.