Monday, 7 March 2011
Visit 240 . . .
. . . will be etched in my memory as a notable one, when I saw my 100th CFBW bird and found a nice flock of Waxwings. Interesting fact: on average I get 0.417 ticks per visit - often it doesn't seem like it!
The bird of course was my most needed, Peregrine. A single circled over Banstead Woods briefly early this afternoon, allowing me only to get distant record shots. This is in keeping with last year's timing and precise locality of others' records.
Earlier on, at 7.10am, I spotted a flock of twelve Waxwings in a Canons Lane garden. I quickly sent out a CFBW-alert to locals and got closer. Just as Ian Jones arrived, at least three more birds appeared out of nowhere, making at least fifteen birds (at one point I was sure I had sixteen). At 7.49am we looked up and they had vanished. Thirty nine minutes is a record stay and fifteen is a record number so we were dead pleased. Just as I was leaving, at 4.10pm, I glanced at the bush and they were there again! I dashed back to get Kevin Hazelgrove who I had met minutes earlier and Steve Gale showed up but alas the birds had disappeared again.
A flock of six Cormorants early in the morning was extraordinary, 'flocks' have never climbed above two at CFBW before! Common Buzzards were much in evidence, with about five birds around but not the hoped-for Red Kite. Four of the Little Owls and a Sparrowhawk also showed.
Had my first butterfly of the year too, a Brimstone. The last few days have convinced me that I should be renamed 'Vampire Birder' - I'm so sensitive to sunlight that my ears are extremely burnt and painful already - the summer is going to be awful!