Monday, 16 July 2012

TURTLE DOVES in the immediate neighbourhood


Another day of rain. All day again it seems, but not with the intensity of recent weeks


Thanks to Graham Smith and Simon Nichols, I was finally able to add EUROPEAN TURTLE DOVE to my Bucks Year List. In fact, they were the first I had seen in the county since 2010 - that's how bad it has got.

I managed two 'purring' males, side-by-side, on wires between thick transects of woodland at SP 930 162. Easily audible but much harder to see - keeping in the main to tall Ash trees.

Take the public footpath from Cheddington Road in Pitstone just NW of ''Autumn Leaves'' and continue for about 250 yards to the metal gate to the left of the gravelly footpath. Literally another 50 yards beyond the gate is a narrow clearing with wires running away down it - this is where both doves kept continually returning to. This was like the territory border line, with both birds returning to the tracts of woodland either side.

I also stumbled on a Sparrowhawk's nest here - noisy chicks being fed in the nest. Quite a few COMMON CROSSBILLS in the area too - at least 7 flying over.


Nothing new to report on but some breeding success still worthy of merit.......

Wader-wise, adult OYSTERCATCHERS still busily feeding the two healthy chicks buy one sadly being left to fend for itself and looking in bad shape. A Carrion Crow was taking an unhealthy interest in it.

Two adult LITTLE RINGED PLOVERS still, yesterday's adult summer DUNLIN still (working it's way along the bund edge), 2 juvenile Common Redshank and 3 baby Lapwings still.

All 3 juvenile COMMON SHELDUCKS still with both parents, Mute Swan pair, 144 moulting Atlantic Canada Geese, 6 Common Teal and the continuing lone Great Crested Grebe

Common Terns feeding two small young on the West Island spit, with 45 Common Swifts overhead

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