Saturday, 29 January 2011

Saturday 29th January 2011

A couple of hours this morning on patch, completing the BTO Atlas second winter TTV for Barming Heath (TQ75H).  The obvious change from the last TTV was the massive increase in Fieldfare and Chaffinch numbers in the South Street Orchards, there were literately swarms of the latter, but no a single Brambling amongst them!  Most of the walk was rather disappointing, but I managed to add to new species to the tetrad in the form a single Moorhen near the only water body in the square, a small, hidden pool to the east of the Hospital and 5x Siskins feeding nearby Alder trees.

A huge, heavily-laden Cotoneaster bush hid a good number of Redwings, but unfortunately no Waxwings...though I wouldn't be surprised if doesn't get 'discovered' before the winter is out.

The old mental hospital site only yielded a single Goldcrest today.  The site has been converted into very nice flats/houses, but it's austere façade still gives me the creeps.

It has a good collection of mature trees in the grounds including redwoods and London Planes, and only on of these planes a bright bracket fungus was taking hold...I really must gen up on the names of these and not have to rely on Greenie!

A footpath along the northern perimeter of Maidstone Hospital took me temporarily out of the square but provided some excellent sightings; it was alive with finches and tits with a GS Woodpecker and a couple of Jays thrown in for good measure.

Bullfinches being as elusive as ever! 

This afternoon I made a fleeting visit to East Malling Research to seed the track and saw at least one Brambling sitting in the nearby cherry trees.  To top of the day The Bald Birder popped by on a rare visit into Kent - little was said about the Slaty-backed Gull!  He did tell me he'd added a link to his flickr site which included his famous shot (well it made all the nationals) of the Humpback Whale breaching off the Isles of Scilly, check it out, along with lots of other goodies here.


Warren Baker said...

Those Bullies are hard to get on Camera Adam :-)

Well done with the Atlasing!

Ken. said...

Hi Adam.
Your right that Cotoneaster Bush is calling out for Waxwings. Fingers crossed.

Greenie said...

Adam ,
Those Bullfinch shots are better than any I have managed . Those Bramblings have been really scarce this winter .
Re. your bracket fungi . Best offering from here is Bjerkandera adusta . The green colour threw me to begin with , but I am reasonably sure that the green is algea on the normal greyish white of the species .
If the Waxwings are attracted to the Cotoneaster , I can see another trip on the cards , but it's surprising how quickly those Redwings can strip a tree .

Paul said...

Hi Adam, nice to see those shy Bullfinches showing well.