Monday, May 24, 2010


i have been enjoying "my" Swifts being back for a while now...and this morning they are screaming around at 9o mph and enjoying the sunshine.

Its been quite a talking point with my neighbours who are all delighted to see them return!

i was a little last week to see that several site where they nested last year are not present this...but they are somewhere so I shall continue to search the eaves of the "estate" where they usually nest!

Less Goldfinches visiting my feeders together-ususaly in ones or twos...hopefully ts cos they are busy...

Awaiting any fledglings that may begin to visit ....

Friday, May 21, 2010


Popped up to Otmoor wednesday afternoon leaving about 3pm...just wish it was even closer!
We arrived at the CP to hear a Gropper reeling.
Through the gate to seek it out and a burst of song from a lesser whitethroat!
Once spied it was down to seeking a sighting of a Grasshopper Warbler! We heard at least three and soon were lucky enough to see one!

On we walked listening for cuckoo - none....turtle doves- none- hobbies?

We reached the main path and the gates that over look across the main part of Otmoor that the public cant go on...we found 4 Hobbies all perched on posts - 2 on the right and two on the left! There they stayed whilst we were on site!

Sedge Warbler burst into song over the Reed Warblers- I had to stay to seek him out...another year tick- yes he gave himself away!

on to the hide - on route Bob picked up a LRP in flight and we finally decided there must be at least 6 - three

in the hide and out again - to the sound of a Turtle then walk down the path and eventually perched up on a bare branch in the sunshine was out quarry!

6 Year Ticks for me and 4 for Bob - not bad for a few hours in the sunshine!

Then to the lovely village pub for a celebratory pint of Breakespears Bitter!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bedfont Lakes Country Park

Blogger wont let me post pics at the mo - so GCGrebes photos to follow!

Lovely morning so I ventured out - arrived at Staines Reservoirs - scanned about - driven away by the midges/flies etc note to self - get there for first light - less insects!

So to Bedfont Lakes arrived about 8am...went to a quite spot by the lake and was seranaded by the Reed Warblers (lots and lots!) and the rest of the Woodland birds.
Common Tern flew over head- after a while I returned towards the Info Centre as I had a cheque to hand in- renewal sub for Members Nature Reserve - need for the code to gain access. On route I spotted a Blue Tit(s) vvv busy - a nest box with young in...
finally a warden/worker available to take said cheque!
Armed with the new code I entered the Nature Reserve...full of birdsong...Blackcaps, Whitethroats and Reed Warblers....not sure I have ever heard so many! A Robin out singing all! Due to maintainence the route to the Tern Hide was blocked - so I walked down the side of the stream to view the Tern rafts...last year it was the other way round as the large raptor nest box occcupants blocked the stream walk!So no nesting Kestrels there this year.

I do love watching Terns flying and feeding....

So to the Hide I could access and what a delight a family of Great Crested Grebes.
2 young on mums back abnd then Dad came in to feed one of the young looked somewhat bigger than his sibling but maybe thats a trick of the light!

I managed some digi shots but to be truthful they were really too close oh for the dslr and long lens!

A Canada Goose nested on the tern raft along with BHGulls - nosy companions!

On the Tern Island and tern rafts nearer to the Tern Hide are nesting Common Terns.

Again the Reed Warblers song burst into the hide and there was another Blue Tit imitating a Humming Bird feeding from the reed tops...

A couple of shots of the GC Grebe family.

It actually got quite hot!

This afternoon was the eye test and ordering new glasses. Good to know your eyes are healthy! Spec Saver in Hounslow High Street are to be recommended. Great customer care, very pleasant effecient staff/optician/receptionist - and 2 pairs of glasses for less than I usually pay for one!

In the evening it was off to the Civic Centre for more Cllr Training - a great improvment on the training I received when I first joined the Council in 1998 - I organised my own - asking Senior Officers to arrange it for me! Planning was one dept who made sure I was up to speed. Now of course we all "do" planning so all get trained!

I am getting up to speedwith background reading and assimilation(sp?) of "stuff" - now to arrange meetings with The Chief Officer for my "brief" and the other officers I shall be working closely with in the next year....they run the Council - I with my fellow Cllrs "lead the Borough".

A responsibility I take seriously but am looking forward to ....."keep birding" said our Deputy Leader - I shall!

Saturday, May 08, 2010

I did explain in my previous blog that I had been busy with the Local Elections . Well on Friday we won Hounslow Council back from NOC (in reality The Tories and the ICG combined to run the previous administration)

We won 12 seats and its now 35-25 - good things well- 11 Women and 5 young men under 30 including one aged 18! My youth Policy has worked!

I am shattered but very happy- I was woken (2nd time this morning) to the pager going off for a mega in Cornwall! needless to says its going to have to fly nearer here and stay a bit longer for me to add it to my Life List!

My birding looks like it will be back to w/e only again!