Winter arrivals

29th October 2005

Winter visitors have arrived in St.Ives and the summer migrants have departed. There may still be a chance to see Chiffchaff though I didn't manage one today, which being a mild sunny day was probably one of the better days to get one.

I did see Brambling and Redwing which will hopefully hang around for a while. Bramblings are winter visiting finches which like to feast on Beech mast along with Chaffinches and Tits. The best spot for these is between the exit to Druid's Altar and the Racecourse plantation as there is a mature Beech wood and it is usually full of birds all winter long.

Redwings and their cousins Fieldfare are Thrushes and will be in St.Ives as long as there are berries on the trees. These can be seen anywhere with berry trees and they are usually in sizeable flocks. The resident Thrushes can also be seen in flocks joining the winter Thrushes so you may se 5 species in the same tree.

A Kingfisher was at Coppice Pond today. This is a welcome sight and a more fequent one in recent autumn / winters, possibly due to local breeding succes along Harden Beck.

There haven't been any Siskin or Redpoll numbers to speak of, just small numbers seen occasionally but this should change in the new year. No Crossbills were seen.

Feeding parties have formed and several are roaming the estate grounds. These usually consist of Goldcrests, Long-tailed, Coal, Blue and Great Tits along with Treecreepers and Nuthatches. Occasionally Woodpeckers join in.

Other sightings today included:
4 Great-spotted Woodpeckers, Nuthatch, Treecreeper, 2 Jay & many Goldcrests.

8th October 2005

A short and rather wet walk around Coppice Pond and down into Cuckoo's Nest Wood produced few birds. Coppice Pond had at least 11 Coot and the usual gang of Mallards. A Jay was seen near the mansion buildings and a Treecreeper was doing it's thing, creeping up a tree, near the Pond car parking area.