25th May 2007

Spotted Flycatcher was seen this morning in Cuckoo Nest Wood, between next box 36 and the steps up to the Ferrand's Oak.

Photos by S Ipson

Song Thrush

Pied Flycatcher

19th May 2007

Another scheduled bird walk for the Friends of St.Ives, this one being attended by three Bradford Ornithological Group members. This week we dropped down into Cuckoo Nest Wood to try and see the Pied Flycatcher first and then walked up past the reservoir and Racecourse plantation and down to Lady Blantyre and finally Coppice Pond.

Cuckoo Nest Wood
Unfortunately the high winds kept many of the songbirds from singing and those that were singing were harder to hear. However, after what seemed an eternity we found the male Pied Flycatcher as he sang. He'd been very elusive as this week he has moved to the woods up hill from nest box 39 and is no longer right next to the path. We discovered a Blue Tit pair are using box 14. Male Blackcap and Chiffchaff were using the same tree to sing from. Nuthatches were seen throughout and we had one sigting of a Jay.

Betty's Lodge
After entering the woods near Betty's Lodge we saw a family party of Long-tailed Tits

White Cotes Barn
A male Sparrowhawk was viewed for a while as it past us and headed away over the woods around Betty's Lodge.

Crossgates Barn
A male Kestrel was seen hunting toward the golf course. A pair of Swallows were feeding close by.

Racecourse Plantation
Goldcrest and Treecreeper were heard and then seen. A distant song drowned out by the wind may have been a Redstart.

Coppice Pond
3 pairs of Canada Geese had 3, 7 and 2 juveniles in tow. No sign of the Tufted Ducks.

I totalled up later and reckon we had at least 12 singing male Blackcaps and 6 Chiffchaffs.

12th & 13th May 2007

Pied Flycatcher has arrived in St.Ives!!!!

After two years of hoping we currently have a male singing outside nest box 36. Fingers crossed he'll attract a mate and or more males into the woods as there is plenty of real estate available.
Box 36 is east of the old barn in Cuckoo Nest Wood.

In general there are several singing Blackcaps and Willow Warblers with at least 6 male Chiffchaff. Only one Garden Warbler has returned so far and only one Whitethroat is singing on the southern edge of the estate. Wood Warblers are yet to come back.

I'm still waiting for the Spotted Flycatchers to return as well as Tree Pipit. There is still no sign of Redstarts after a few years of them not returning.

Other boxes currently being used are as follows:

Blue Tits are in boxes 66, 59, 40, 37 and 4
Great Tits are in box 34

These are only my observations, if you know of more please do get in touch.

6th May 2007

A quick wonder around the circuit today hoping to stop for the likes of Tree Pipit, Redstart, Pied & Spotted Flycatchers as well as Wood Warblers.

None of the above were seen! It appears that we're back to normal after a few weeeks of early arrivals during April, with St.Ives lagging behind everywhere else for migrants of course!

Cuckoo Nest Wood -
typical species such as Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Nuthatch were all seen

Coppice Pond -
The pair of Tufted Duck are still hanging around but no sign of breeding yet

Heather Park -
plenty of Meadow Pipits and Willow Warblers but no Tree Pipit, yet.

Two Barns Area -
no sign of the Garden Warbler heard during my last visit.

Kettlewell Res -
a male Kestrel passed overhead.

28th April 2007

Another complete circuit was done this weekend, starting in the new car park and heading into Cuckoo Nest Wood.

Cuckoo Nest Wood: Plenty of Blackcaps singing as more had obvisouly arrived recently, I listened to one break into his mimicry song as a female approached. There seems to be bit more activety at the nest boxes with a Blue Tit at box 34 and Great Tit at box 5. There were at least 3 Chiffchaff singing.

Coppice Pond: The Canada Geese have bred with at least one family of goslings hatched. The Tufted Ducks were not seen but hopefully they are still present. Coot and Moorhen have both nested.

Coppice Bog: Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler singing.

Heather Park: several Willow Warblers singing

Two Barns area: Chiffchaff, Blackcap and Willow Warblers were all in full song, and a Garden Warbler has thankfully returned.

I'm hopeful that in the coming weeks I'll be seeing other summer migrants such as Tree Pipits, Redstarts, Wood Warblers, Spotted Flycatchers and (fingers crossed) Pied Flycatchers. It'll be interesting this year to see how many Spotted Flycatchers turn up as at one point last year there were 6 singing males, which was extraordinary.