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Report from Stapleford Bird Club - 4th June 2011

Nine of the regular birders plus a young grandson as usual started their walk from the car park viewing chaffinches, blackbird, and then a singing willow warbler and of course the skylarks. Youth wood proved to be very quiet, but at the commencement of the path through Magog Wood we soon heard a blackcap singing, a wren shrilling and a great tit or two calling.

The North Down gave us a couple of crows, and the “quiet” land adjacent to Jane`s Piece provided feeding for several rooks. We were disappointed to find nothing of note in the hedging by the parish pit. A jay was heard at the edge of Little Trees Hill. Whitethroats were in evidence along the hedging by Villedômer Wood and the arable field, but not in the numbers of previous years. Along here we had a good sighting of a calling corn bunting, a skimming swallow and a solitary perched yellowhammer.

Vestey Wood produced calling chiffchaffs, some chaffinches, blackcap and wren, and as we walked up alongside Memorial wood we saw the odd blackbird and some long-tailed tits overflew us. Interestingly with the return of sheep to the south down, so there was a large gathering of corvids including crows, rooks and jackdaws. Although we could not be sure we felt reasonably confident that a linnet or two were flitting between the fence wires and the ground. We were more confident with the robin that was feeding on the path and kept moving ahead of us. The gardens by Colin`s Wood seem to be less productive than in previous years and the raptor lovers were finally rewarded at the car park with a hovering kestrel by the road.

Noticeably absent were overflying house martins, but we recorded 21 species. Will the July walk on Saturday the 2nd be more productive?

Come and see!!