Local sightings

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May 2016

a Song Thrush was in the bushes at the Dog Field. A Grey Heron was on the floods off Burley Lane.
a Cuckoo was seen flying over the village. A Chiffchaff continued to be seen, and heard, at Two Gate Meadow. Both Skylark and Brown Hare were heard / seen in the Nutley Bottom area; the more rural areas of the Parish still holding fair populations of both species. A pair of Coal Tit was regularly visiting garden vegetation to feed in the same area. As vocal as the other birds about the village were the cock peafowl, often being heard many roads away from where they actually were. Pairings of birds were evident about Station Hill, a Starling visiting a garden there now sadly a rare visitant.
birds in song included Song Thrush, Skylark and Yellowhammer.
perhaps of most note today was the appearance of the sun!!! Cuckoo, Chiffchaff, Skylark and the Blue Peafowl were all in good form vocally. The pair of Coal Tit continued to be seen in Two Gate Meadow, where Blue Tit* were busy nesting, as were 'loads' of Starling; the latter an ever decreasing species both locally and nationally!
two Cuckoo in flight at Polhampton constituted the first multiple sighting in the Parish for some years.
A Cuckoo was seen moving overhead at Station Hill where immature Blackbird joined their parents, six House Sparrow and a Wren also being seen in gardens there.
Muntjac were heard during the evening at the top of Overton Hill / Two Gate Meadow. Cuckoo, Green Woodpecker and Skylark were also vocal about the village outskirts. Holly Blue were seen out on the wing. The Song Thrush was again by the Dog Field, as were Yellowhammer. The Two Gate Meadow Chiffchaff was still in situ, a Blackcap also being heard there. Pairs of birds noted included Goldfinch and Blackbird, the latter with their progeny close to hand.
a Grey Heron was seen on the rising waters of The Test.
a Buzzard and up to three Red Kite were noted over Woodlands in the more clement weather, the latter near perfect for the raptors to thermal in.
a Hornet visited one living room, not for long apparently!
a Cuckoo was heard at Polhampton. Singing Song Thrush were also heard, about Station Hill where a cock Blackbird had taken on feeding duties.
Queens seen today included Red-tailed Bumble-bee and Common Wasp; the latter frequenting a shed.
a Great Spotted Woodpecker was seen visiting a peanut feeder. A cock Chaffinch in the same garden was one of few noted there so far this year.

* the box containing this nest having to be moved mid-nesting attempt!

Contributors: Deborah Heath, Peter E. Hutchins & Margaret Rainford.

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