Sunday, 15 May 2016

Knepp 15 May: Turtle Doves but for how much longer?

Sunday 15th. An enjoyable walk around the southern section of the Knepp Estate where bird song was at a level rarely heard locally. Highlights were up to 4 Turtle Doves (2 purring loudly), 2 Cuckoos, Nightingale (heard only), Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Garden Warblers and a Raven. Near West Mill Farm 2 Nightingales were singing (one flew across the track but the other remained hidden). A Cetti's Warbler was more obliging. At Woods Mill a silent Nightingale showed well and 2 more Cetti's were heard. In the afternoon a Whimbrel was on the Adur opposite the airfield.
Turtle Dove at Knepp. Perhaps the most reliable site for this species in West Sussex? Given how quickly they seemed to disappear from West Dean Woods it is hard to feel they are secure even here and opportunities to see them shouldn't be missed.
Cuckoo at Knepp
Black Rabbit
Canada Goose, one of  a pair looking a bit out of place in one of the more grassy fields
Greylag Goose
keep off my island
new (for me) motor, same old rubbish in the back
Robin at Woods Mill, not the only robin I'm hoping for this year
Whimbrel on the Adur
the remains of Southlands Hospital from our house. How much will still be standing next week?
Saturday 14th. Collected my car, seeing a Hobby just outside Shoreham on the way. Spent much of the rest of the day reading the manual and doing odd chores. Finding it hard to shake off post-pom depression! Three Swifts over the house in the evening.

Friday 13th. Two Swifts over the house in the evening.

Thursday 12th. Bought a replacement car. Later Megan and I walked along the Downs. Superb views and a Red Kite cruising east at Devils Dyke but otherwise just a single Corn Bunting seen. Five Swifts over the house in the evening.
Megan at Devil's Dyke trig point
Red Kite heading east
Southlands Hospital, going going ...
Wednesday 11th. Eight Swifts over the house in the evening.

Tuesday 10th. 23 Black-headed Gulls flew east as I was cycling home past Southwick Beach. Just two Swifts over the house in the evening.

Monday 9th. Three Swifts over the house in the evening.

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