Local sightingsReturn to the list of reports
- a Muntjac was roadside at Overton Hill / Two Gate Meadow late evening.
- Red Kite, Kestrel and Buzzard were all seen over the village by late morning, as were Lesser Black-backed Gull and Mallard. Hairy-footed Flower-bee continued to make the most of the flowering Lungwort.
- the bank of Greater Celandine at Court Farm House remained a bright splash of yellow in the increasing green of the hedgerow. A Cuckoo was in song at Polhampton where ten pairs of Tufted Duck were on the pools.
- two Swallow were on telegraph wires early morning in Woodlands.
- both Green Woodpecker and Blue Peafowl were vocal early morning.
- a Little Egret was feeding in the rapidly decreasing waters west of Ashe Park. At least three House Martin were over Lordsfield Gardens early afternoon, one of their favoured nesting sites within the Parish. One Blue Tit nest already had seven hatched eggs.
Right: Little Egret, Egretta garzetta
- early afternoon had a Cuckoo singing in the Silk Mill Lane / Southington area, it being heard to move west as it repeated its quest for a 'friend'. Later it, or another, was heard in the Foxdown / Flashetts area. A Sparrowhawk moved through the Glebe Meadow and Bridge Street gardens. Two Kestrel were seen over Oak Close by dog-walker. Late afternoon had a Red Kite drifting north over Overton Hill.
- Swift were becoming more evident over the village, though still in small numbers. the Cuckoo was again heard at Polhampton. A Holly Blue was, appropriately, on Holly in Poyntz Road.
- a Lesser Whitethroat was in song in hedgerows by the 'Dog Field', as were Blackcap and Chiffchaff whilst colour was added there by Bullfinch, Small Copper and Orange-tip. A Sparrowhawk lingered over Lordsfield Gardens early afternoon, a Red Kite being seen to move south-west over Overton Hill a little later.
- the Lesser Whitethroat remained in song in Turrill Hill hedgerows whilst a Buzzard was seen to move north over Lordsfield Gardens mid-afternoon.
- two Red Kite were over Lordsfield Gardens mid-afternoon, at least one pair of House Martin nest prospecting there. A light frost greeted those up early enough to see this further hint of non-spring weather.
- a Red Kite was being harassed by crows over the Court Farm House area mid-morning. Recently placed feeders in a Woodlands garden saw flocks of up to 11 House Sparrow visiting, once the Woodpigeon had left! Rain, again!
- a Red Kite drifted south over the High Street mid-morning, another east over the same area early evening.
- a Peregrine drifted low WSW over Woodlands early evening - the first Parish record for some time of this hopefully ever-increasing Hampshire falcon; at least 14 nests having been found in the county to date this year. A Cuckoo was in song about Glebe Meadow / Town Meadow. Both Red Kite and House Martin were over Lordsfield Gardens early afternoon, where Scarlet Pimpernel were in flower, with another of the raptor being seen over the High Street. The bank of Greater Celandine was still adding colour to the edge of Court Drove. A newly made Blackbird nest was discovered in one garden whilst parts of a hatched egg were found in Vinn's Lane. A Goldfinch was seen at the top of Red Lion i nthe mornign and a Blue Peafowl was lingering there mid-evening.
- a pair of Marsh Tit was seen at Dellands House. A 14-spot Ladybird was discovered while weeding in Highfields.
- a pair of Pochard on The Test in Southington was the latest 'garden tick' for two members; an unusual record as this species is becomoing ever less frequenlty recorded locally.
- three newt were found under compost bags in a Lordsfield Gardens garden. A Grey Heron was on the wing to The Test over Glebe Meadow.
Of the three native newt species, Smooth Newts (left) are the most commonly seen, though Palmate Newts (centre) look very similar. Great Crested Newts (right) are rare but local populations can be strong.
- Smooth Newt. Up to 10cm long. Brown (usually) upper body sometimes with visible black spots. Pale orange belly with small black spots. Males develop a continuous wavy crest, running from the head to the end of the tail, during the spring.
- Palmate Newt. Very similar to smooth newt but a maximum of around 8-9cm. Throat is usually pink and unspotted. Males develop webbed back feet, a ridge running along the back and a thin filament at the end of the tail during the breeding season.
- Great Crested Newt. Up to 16cm long. Rough, black skin often with white-tipped 'warts'. Bright orange belly with irregular black blotches. During the breeding season males have a jagged crest running from the head, along the back, with a break at the base of the tail; the tail also has a conspicuous white flash.
- the Cuckoo lingering about the western end of the village visited gardens in Glebe Meadow.
- disappointing news was that no Stone-curlew were attempting breeding within the Parish this year - all three nest sites used last year not attracting any birds for any length of time this year.
- a male Orange-tip brightened the The Harrow Way hedgerows. Mid-morning saw three Red Kite moving low over Lordsfield Gardens, another being over there mid-afternoon. A Chiffchaff was still in song by Town Meadow / Silk Mill Lane.
- a female Sparrowhawk settled in a Glebe Meadow garden tree for a while. A Muntjac was seen in Two Gate Meadow during the afternoon.
- a / the Cuckoo was again in song early morning and then again early evening; in Southington. An enforced stay at home had Chiffchaff, Swift, Grey Heron, Red Kite, Mallard, House Martin, Lesser Black-backed Gull and Sparrowhawk amongst the birds seen or heard in, over or from a Woodlands garden. A Slow-worm was found on the roadside on Kingsclere road.
- a Red Admiral was seen on Court Drove, the first report locally for some time of this species.
- several Red Kite were seen over the village, at differing times of days and sites.
- Red Kite were again apparent over the village. A swarm of honeybees landed on the road on Kingsclere road near the village centre
Right: Swarm of honeybees
Contributors: Brian Elkins, Margaret Elkins, David Cluett, Helen Harden, Deborah Heath, Alison Hutchins, Peter E. Hutchins, Veronique Kerguelen & Adam Trickett.