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Post Info TOPIC: Highfield Moss, Lowton


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Date:
Highfield Moss, Lowton


Yesterday between 2.00pm and 3.30pm

1 Peregrine (flying East)
60+ Fieldfare
10+ Redwing
40+ Pink Footed Goose (over flying)
3 Tree sparrow
20 Linnet
5 Long Tailed Tit
1 Buzzard

-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Wednesday 26th of November 2014 06:33:12 PM

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L Hindley


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A couple of hours this morning. Notables were:

c40 Skylarks around the cropped field to the north of the line.
9 Pink-footed geese over west.
c55 Fieldfares over south in two flocks.
2 Willow Tits in mixed tit flock.
1 Buzzard


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The maize field to the north of the line has now been cropped and this morning it held loads of birds. Good numbers of Corvids and a sizeable flock of Starlings plus quite a few mixed Finches, Skylarks, Yellowhammers and Reed Buntings kept me busy for a while. Unfortunately I could find nothing unusual in amongst them.

Elsewhere it was fairly quiet apart from a bit of overhead passage from mostly Starlings but also some Redwings and Fieldfares.

43 Skylarks
1 Kestrel
c30 Redwings through west.
9 Chaffinches
17 Meadow Pipits
5 Goldfinches
7 Greenfinches
7 Yellowhammers
17 Reed Buntings
1 Song Thrush
1 Buzzard
1 Goldcrest
1 Jay
33 Fieldfare through west
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
1 Sparrowhawk


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Two hours this morning in bright and clear conditions. Good numbers of Wood Pigeons and Starlings moving through plus other bits and bobs too.

56 Skylarks - many appeared to be moving north but some looked like they were just loafing around too.
7 Yellowhammers
2 Jays
2 Sparrowhawks - m,f
4 Linnets
12 Reed Buntings
5 Snipe
1 Siskin over north.
6 Meadow Pipits
2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers
1 Mistle Thrush
1 Cormorant over NW.
2 Buzzards
1 Bullfinch - male.
6 Grey Partridges
1 Chiffchaff - latest record.


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Quite windy on the moss this morning and so it was pretty quiet really.

13 Skylarks moving through southwards.
4 Yellowhammers
1 Mistle Thrush
4 Chaffinches
1 Stonechat - a first winter male on the gorse near the pond.
7 Meadow Pipits moving through in one flock.
1 Kestrel
2 Buzzards
1 Goldfinch
17 Pink-footed Geese through west.


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Date:

A two hour visit this morning in quite windy conditions. Generally it was fairly quiet but there were a few good birds around.

18 Grey Partridges - coveys of 7 and 11.
3 Buzzards
1 Peregrine - with prey.
60 Pink-footed Geese over south east. At one point I looked north and could see skein upon skein in the distance heading south east.
1 Goldcrest
4 Snipe
1 Stonechat - female along edge of maize field. Probably same bird from last week.

Plus all the usuals.

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Apart from the overhead passage it was fairly quiet in and around the moss this morning. That said, there were still one or two good birds to be found. A late Chiffchaff was singing in the big hedge to the north of the line and was still there two hours later when I came back that way. Also, a female Stonechat was fly catching on the edge of the maize field and was still there on my return too. On the southern edge of the moss a tit flock held a Coal Tit which was only my third ever record of one down here and three Fieldfares flying through south were my first of the autumn.

1 Mistle Thrush
1 Kestrel
4 Jays
1 Chiffchaff
14 Meadow Pipits through south.
41 Skylarks through south.
1 Stonechat - female.
1 Buzzard
4 Yellowhammers
c50 Pink-footed Geese over west.
4 Goldfinches
4 Reed Buntings
8 Linnets
2 Greenfinches
1 Coal Tit with mixed tit flock.
3 Fieldfares through south.
4 Chaffinches

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Date:

First visit for about two weeks on what turned out to be a beautiful morning. The bird of the day was undoubtly the male Merlin that blazed through a flock of Linnets as I was watching them on the eastern side. This caused pandemonium amongst the Linnets but the Merlin just sped on through southwards. Elsewhere good numbers of Skylarks appeared to be moving through but many also seemed to be just loafing around so actual numbers were difficult to ascertain.

5 Pied Wagtails over southwards
c130 Pink-footed Geese over eastwards.
42 Skylarks
19 Meadow Pipits
1 Buzzard
2 Song Thrushes
c70 Linnets
c30 Tree Sparrows
1 Merlin - male.
9 Chaffinches
1 Willow Tit
5 Reed Buntings
5 Grey Partridges
2 Jays
2 Yellowhammers
2 Goldcrests

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Date:

Today was a red letter day as I finally scored my bogey bird of a Barn Owl. I've been looking for Barn Owls down on here for a good few years without any success despite knowing that they breed not too far away. As I looped back around the footpath at the western end I passed by a large copse of trees and inadvertently flushed the bird from less than 20 yards away. It came straight out at me and drifted off over the embankment and out of sight. To say I was made up is an understatement!

Migration was a bit down on yesterday with hardly any Meadow Pipits moving through and only a handful of Swallows. The field to the north of the line though held good numbers of birds with a large flock of Linnets and a good number of Pied Wagtails as well as around 120 Black-headed gulls, 20 Lesser Black-backed gulls and a single Common Gull. Other birds of note around the moss were a single Snipe and a Golden Plover.

9 Meadow Pipits
8 Goldfinches through south.
7 Reed Buntings
2 Chaffinches
9 Yellowhammers - mostly juvs.
2 Grey Wagtails through south.
2 Kestrels - one adult and a juv.
1 Jay
1 Barn Owl
1 Goldcrest
19 Pied Wagtails
c70 Linnets on ploughed field.
11 Skylarks through south.
1 Snipe through west.
1 Song Thrush
1 Golden Plover through north then east.
2 Tree Sparrows
9 Grey Partridges - 7 juvs.

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7.30 until 9.30. Quite a few birds around this morning with also a bit of movement overhead too. Meadow Pipits trickling through southwards all the time during my visit plus a few Skylarks as well. A nice morning to be out.

c100 Lesser Black-backed gulls plus c100 Black-headed gulls on the ploughed field to the north of the line.
3 Chiffchaffs
12 Pied Wagtails - mostly on the ploughed field.
38 Meadow Pipits over southwards.
c15 Linnets
16 Grey Partridges - one covey of 9 birds including 2 adults plus other coveys of 5 and 2.
4 Jays
1 Grey Wagtail over west.
1 Yellowhammer
1 Reed Bunting
1 Willow Warbler
1 Kestrel
2 Goldcrests
10 Skylarks over south.
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
1 Buzzard
2 Song Thrushes

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Date:

Meadow Pipits were trickling through southwards this morning during my visit and a sure sign that birds are on the move. Otherwise, pretty much quiet like yesterday with small pockets of activity.

c25 Meadow Pipits
2 Chiffchaffs
1 Skylark - through southwards.
2 Buzzards
2 Jays
1 Sparrowhawk - female.
3 Reed Buntings
2 Grey Wagtails - through southwards.
1 Kestrel
1 Yellowhammer
1 Whitethroat
1 Willow Tit

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Date:

I was hoping for something a little better this morning but the place was still fairly quiet. The main activity was a roving tit flock down the eastern side, which, despite my best efforts I could only manage to pick out a couple of Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler and a Goldcrest. Still, we live in hope!

3 Chiffchaffs - one singing.
1 Goldcrest
2 Skylarks heading over south.
1 Sparrowhawk - female.
1 Whitethroat
1 Willow Warbler
1 Buzzard
4 Jays
c20 Tree Sparrows

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Date:

Calmer conditions this morning and so there was a bit more activity around.

c25 Linnets in one flock moving about around the stubble.
1 Kestrel
3 Pied Wagtails over north.
1 Willow Tit
3 Yellowhammers
3 Whitethroats
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
2 Meadow Pipits
5 Reed Buntings
3 Willow Warblers
8 Goldfinches
2 Jays
1 Chiffchaff
2 Buzzards
c20 Tree Sparrows in same location as previous.
2 Chaffinches


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Date:

Had a couple of hours down here early this morning before the rain started. Very quiet, but it usually is when it's windy. With a bit of persistence though I managed to locate a few birds.

1 Whitethroat
19 Swallows pushing southward through the wind.
2 Kestrels
1 Sparrowhawk being harried by Crows.
3 Buzzards annoying the crows.
1 Willow Tit
1 Willow Warbler
5 Goldfinches
2 Linnets
2 Reed Buntings
c25 Tree Sparrows feeding in the stubble field by the airstrip.

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Date:

First visit down here for over a month. It was fairly quiet but there were a few little pockets of activity. Three Chiffchaffs were in the big hedge to the north of the line, with two more elsewhere on the moss. To my knowledge this is the largest count of Chiffchaffs I've had down there. Also, I had a possible female Pied Flycatcher. I got a very brief view of it as it flit from a bush on the eastern side by the airstrip but I was unable to relocate it to confirm it.

3 Buzzards
5 Chiffchaffs
4 Whitethroats
1 Yellowhammer
2 Linnets
2 Kestrels
1 Goldfinch
1 Reed Bunting
2 Jays
2 Chaffinches
1 Sparrowhawk
2 Grey Partridges


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Nothing out of the ordinary around the moss this morning but still loads of juvenile birds around. A flock of around thirty juvenile Greenfinches, Goldfinches and Linnets were feeding on the rape field to the north of the line. Several Whitethroats still present in various locations plus several fledgling Willow Warblers being fed by parents. Two Grey Partridges were on the airstrip and upto 40 Swifts were fly catching over the moss itself with a handful of juvenile Swallows. In addition to this there appeared to be a big hatch of Gatekeepers as they were absolutely everywhere.

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Date:

A good mooch round this morning with conditions more favourable than the last couple of days. Loads of activity and plenty of juvenile birds around.

c40 Lapwings in the cropped field by the maize field.
13 Whitethroats - mostly juveniles.
5 Skylarks
1 Greenfinch
7 Linnets
9 Goldfinches - all juvs.
7 Reed Buntings
5 Yellowhammers
2 Oystercatchers
2 Chaffinches
13 Meadow Pipits - five juvs
1 Great Spotted Woodpecker - juv
5 Willow Warblers
5 Mallards - all juvs
18 Mistle Thrushes - all feeding together on the airstrip. Probably several family parties.
2 Song Thrushes
2 Tree Sparrows.

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Date:

Early morning circuit.

Of note:
Two family parties of Whitethroats plus three other adult birds.
Two families of Goldfinches.
Two juvenile Great Spotted Woodpeckers.
Several juvenile Swallows.
20+ Lapwings in the maize field. Only one fledgling seen though.
2 Oystercatchers in maize field.
2 Tree Sparrows
2 Moorhens
Juvenile Grey Heron over south.

I also found two dead Moles.

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Date:

Quick visit this pm was passing with a bit of time to spare
Corn bunting just beyond farm, 5 yellowhammer,3 goldfinch,kestrel,several reed bunting,swift and swallow darting about,lapwing,mistle thrush,wood pigeon,carrion crow, will definitely return with more time to spend exploring the area.

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Hi Nick/Gary, thanks for the update

Corn Bunting showing well (09:45 hrs.) on top of, and flitting between, Rapeseed field and Wheat field on either side of public footpath just beyond Highfield Farm. Lifer for me - good start to the week.
I stayed to north side of railway line - great view of Winter Hill in the distance.

Other sightings included:
Yellowhammer (1M and 1F)
Grey Partridge x 2
Skylark
Lapwing x 7 (and intermittently chasing off Carrion Crow)
Oystercatcher x 1
Wren
Juvenile Blue Tit in tree waiting to be fed by adult
Tree Sparrow
Reed Bunting
Kestrel
Herring Gull
Mistle Thrush x 2
Blackbird
Goldfinch x 3
Woodpigeon
Swift
Swallow




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Date:

Steve Judge wrote:

Hi Gary - which Highfield Farm are you referring to? On map I have just looked at there are two farms with that name in that area. Is this one to the north or south of the railway line?





The Highfield farm to the south is actually within St Helens and so out of county.

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Hi Steve - sorry first time I've visited the site - it was the one just north of the travellers rest pub on the a572(??)

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Hi Gary - which Highfield Farm are you referring to? On map I have just looked at there are two farms with that name in that area. Is this one to the north or south of the railway line?

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1100 - 1300 Corn Bunting still just passed Highfield Farm. >=7 Yellowhammers 2 Grey Partridge 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker 2 Whitethroats, 1 Blackcap, a few Willow warblers and Chiffchaff. Plenty of butterflies and dragonflies/damselflies.

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Quick hour this teatime, First visit to this site considering it's not very far from my house.

1 corn bunting
4 yellowhammer, 2 pairs
3 skylark
2 meadow pipit
2 common whitethroat
2 male wheatears
Could hear a blackcap singing, as was quite a few willow warbler's
3 linnet
2 buzzards
3 lapwings
1 kestrel
2 chiffchaff

Will definitely be coming backsmile

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Scott robinson


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Quick hour from 11-12 this morning.
Corn Bunting singing from hedge at end of airstrip
At least 3 singing male reed buntings and one yellowhammer
Brood of blue tits
2 singing willow warblers
5-6 yellow wagtails in field before airstrip
Several singing skylark and meadow pipit
One grey partridge on airstrip

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First time on this site - even though quite local patch. It did not disappoint. Will be back!!!
Buzzard
Kestrel
Reed Bunting
Yellowhammer
Whitethroat
Blackbird
Tree Sparrow
House Sparrow
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Think I saw Corn Bunting. Not 100% sure. What is best area to spot Corn Bunting on this patch?
Is the air strip still in use?

-- Edited by Ian McKerchar on Monday 19th of May 2014 06:22:23 PM

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Mission accomplished...!
1 Corn Bunting, Not an easy bird to see in Greater Manchester.

Nice to meet Nick Isherwood and thanks for sharing your local knowledge.

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Beautiful morning on the moss today. Plenty of activity all over.

1 Corn Bunting
4 Cormorants over westwards.
6 Whitethroats
8 Lapwings including two fledglings.
1 Oystercatcher
1 Sedge Warbler
6 Chaffinches
9 Skylarks
7 Willow Warblers
8 Yellowhammers
7 Reed Buntings
6 Meadow Pipits
1 Blackcap
1 Bullfinch - male
3 Tree Sparrows
1 Song Thrush
2 Goldfinches
4 Linnets

Also, nice to meet fellow Manchester birder Mark Burgess who was on a mission to catch up with a Corn Bunting.

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Date:

Lovely conditions this morning on the moss. Bright sunshine with just a touch of ground frost.

Of note were two female Wheatears on the ploughed field with the Corn Bunting close by. Two male Blackcaps were also present elsewhere on the moss as was a singing Sedge Warbler. Several Whitethroats around plus the usual decent numbers of Willow Warblers.

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Early morning blaze around the moss. Seven Wheatears on the ploughed field to the north of the line plus an Oystercatcher. The Corn Bunting present in the usual area too.

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7.00 - 9.00am

Wheatear 2 possibly 3f
Skylark 4
Yellowhammer 5
Willow Warbler many heard
Sedge Warbler
Common Whitethroat 2
Linnet 1m 1f
Meadow Pipit 4
Grey Partridge 2 flushed
Oystercatcher


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A pleasant stroll around the moss this evening in dry conditions (for the first time today).

The Sedge Warbler was still present in the same area as previously along with a Corn Bunting too. Four Greenland type Wheatears (3f, 1m) were in the ploughed field near the line as was a single Oystercatcher. Several Whitethroats and Willow Warblers and a Blackcap were around the moss along with all the other usuals.

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Date:

A Hobby was present this morning during my early morning tootle on the moss. It initially flew right over my head as I crossed the railway line and then I picked it up again five minutes later as it circled around the western end. It looked superb in the early morning sunlight.

Also in attendance were four Wheatears (2m,2f) on the ploughed field plus the male Sedge Warbler was still scratching away from the ditch. The male Corn Bunting was still singing from its usual spot and six Whitethroats were singing from around the moss as well as a Blackcap.

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PM-Same area as yesterdays Whinchat
Wheatear-1 Female
Oystercatcher-2
Whitethroat-1
Yellowhammer-2
Corn Bunting-1
smile

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7.00 - 9.00am

No sign of the Whinchat for me this morning.

Song thrush 2
Chiffchaff 2
Common Whitethroat 2
Willow Warbler 3
Skylark 2
Linnet 1m
Yellowhammer 6
Reed Bunting 7
Tree Sparrow 7
Kestrel


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The two Whinchat were in the rape field to the right of the track, still there when we left around 11.30am, also 1 Corn Bunting, 6 Yellowhammer, 1 Yellow Wagtail, 1 Sedge Warbler and 2 Tree Sparrow.

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No sign of whinchat this afternoon from 13.00-14.30
Sedge Warbler-1
Whitethroat-5
corn bunting -1
yellowhammer-1
smile



-- Edited by JOHN TYMON on Sunday 4th of May 2014 07:53:32 AM

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Another good morning down on the moss today. Two female Whinchats present along the path down to the railway line were good to see. Also here was a Sedge Warbler 'scratching' away in a nearby bush and to top it off two Yellow Wagtails on the adjacent ploughed field.

All the other usuals present too.

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A dawn amble this morning on the moss produced one or two new migrants. A male Wheatear was on the gorse by the railway and three singing Whitethroats were new in. Otherwise it was business as usual.

5 Skylarks
9 Yellowhammers
5 Lapwings
3 Whitethroats
1 Chiffchaff
3 Chaffinches
1 Kestrel
3 Mallards
3 Song Thrushes
7 Willow Warblers
4 Meadow Pipits
1 Wheatear
6 Reed Buntings
6 Linnets
2 Tree Sparrows
1 Corn Bunting


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Date:

12.30 - 1.30pm walking back from work on Kenyon Hall Farm

4x Yellow Wagtail
2x Linnet
8x Yellowhammer
10x Reed Bunting
3x Meadow Pipit
10x Tree Sparrow
4x Willow Warbler
1x Common Whitethroat heard only
5x Buzzard


Also 1 Corn Bunting singing for over half an hour from top of tree seen from Asparagus field opposite Kenyon Hall Farm (this probably in Cheshire)

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Early morning tootle on the moss this morning. No sign of yesterday's Ring Ouzel but I did score another new patch tick as I was leaving when a Redshank flew over southwards calling as it went. Otherwise, all the usuals were present.



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Had a site mega this morning in the shape of a cracking male Ring Ouzel.

After the overnight rain I had a brief window of opportunity to get on the moss this morning before errands beckoned. Walking along the embankment I quickly found my first Whitethroat of the year skulking in a small tree. A little further on I heard three sharp 'chacks' which drew my attention. Immediately a blackbird with silvery wings flew from some gorse and across to the trees on the southern edge of the moss. I got my bins on it and immediately saw it was a stonking male Ring Ouzel. It then dropped to the ground and disappeared.

I continued on and picked up a male Wheatear on the gorse before moving onto the airstrip on the eastern side. Here I re-located the Ring Ouzel as it was happily feeding with a couple of Blackbirds. I managed a couple of iPhone digi-binned shots of it before it flushed again to the moss whereby I couldn't relocate it again.

There was no sign of the two Whinchats from Thursday.


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Paul Richardson wrote:

I felt there was something skulking! I just knew it.....





Don't beat yourself up about it Paul. Birds can be easily missed on there.

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Perhaps dawdle a little more slowly in future Paul

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I felt there was something skulking! I just knew it.....

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Paul


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One of the things that I always look forward to on the moss at this time of year is finding a Whinchat and this evening didn't disappoint. A male and a female were present near the western end and although a little skulky they did show fairly well for a while before disappearing.

Other notables were a singing Corn Bunting and two pairs of Grey Partridges.

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Had a pleasant dawdle around the moss this afternoon in warm sunshine.

Fairly quiet but

Yellowhammer m 3 f 1
Yellow Wagtails 1 pair showing nicely on the airstrip - the male was spectacular
Meadow pipit 3 - same area
Linnet - 5
Kestrel - 1
Reed Bunting - just 1
Carrion Crow - 2
Willow Warblers - numerous singing

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Paul


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Looking forward to some more of your perambulations then Nick :)

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David Walsh wrote:

Verbs of motion - an almost infinitesimal selection. Shuffle, trundle, amble. Use them or lose them, Nick. I also like embellishing my reports. It entertains me if no-one else. Keep it up!





I intend to David. Cheers.

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