SUNDAY NOVEMBER 1ST - GARDEN WATCH AND A VISIT TO SUTTON BINGHAM RESERVOIR - MONDAY NOVEMBER 2ND - GARDEN WATCH AND AFTERNOON WALK INTO YEO VALLEY
NOVEMBER 1ST - GARDEN WATCH AND AFTERNOON VISIT TO SUTTON BINGHAM
WEATHER: atrocious all day, very windy with all day rain, sometimes heavy, sometimes drizzle, but non-stop
I decided against a morning walking, just looking at the sheets of rain pounding the windows put me off. It did brighten up a tiny bit later in the morning so I spent sometime watching the feeders from my front door.
Eurasian Nuthatch is a regular visitor to my feeders
The usual Blue and Great Tits were joined by Coal Tits, Eurasian Nuthatch and Goldfinches visiting my feeders. I also saw a Robin and Wren in the vicinity with Jackdaw and Wood Pigeon perched high above the feeders in the sycamore trees (which incidentally have covered my lawn with dead leaves and thousands of ‘helicopter’ seed pods).
some colourful common English Garden birds to brighten up a dull day
By 3pm I was clawing the walls of my living room so I had to get for a short while, I drove across to Sutton Bingham Reservoir and spent a very wet hour looking at a few species on the water. The main causeway held dozens of Black-headed Gulls, a few Herring Gulls, Mallards, Moorhens and a few Great crested Grebes sat out on the water. I never saw a single bird in the west pool!!
I love the way a great Tit holds a seed bewteen its feet and eats on the feeder.
From the lookout point at the southern end of the reservoir I added a couple of dozen Cormorants, two Eurasian Wigeon and a single Mute Swan (not a common species these days at Sutton Bingham). I got wet and a little cold before I drove back home, the fresh air done me good, I no longer wanted to strangle my dear wife for no reason at all!!
NOVEMBER 2ND – GARDEN WATCH AND AN AFTERNOON WALK INTO YEO VALLEY
WEATHER: bright sunshine, with clouds later, a noticeable drop in temperature, still windy.
It was a pleasant surprise to see blue sky this morning but I couldn’t take full advantage of it until the afternoon. I watched the feeders for a while seeing all the same species as yesterday, namely: Nuthatch, Coal, Blue & Great Tits, Robin, Goldfinch and Jackdaw.
the entrance to Yeo valley with the derelict farm building in the distance
This morning I had a business appointment in Ilminster which is a 20 minute drive from home. In Ilminster I added Eurasian Sparrowhawk, Greenfinch, Chaffinch and Collared Dove to the November tally and I was back home before 11am.
Dawn then took the car just before 11am and drove to meet a friend for lunch, I took my exercise walk through the village, adding Common Buzzard and Common Starling to the monthly list, before taking lunch.
record shot of a Common Buzzard over rook's Hill
My afternoon walk into Yeo Valley started around 2pm, I walked straight into the Valley and headed northward along my usual route through the two meadows. A Green Woodpecker called out “hello stranger” as it flew up Rook’s Hill away from me. Three Common Buzzards drifted over the hill, holding in the wind, they seemed to be enjoying themselves as they used the wind to rise and fall at will. A Pied Wagtail sat on the roof of the derelict farm building, the last time I was there a Grey Wagtail sat in exactly the same place! Perhaps a Citrine or Eastern Yellow wagtail will be there tomorrow?
A large group of around fifty small finches flew over calling, I heard both Goldfinches and Siskins, they landed in the canopy of the Alder Trees, but quite far off. Both Pheasants and Red-legged Partridges flew up from the meadow, I don’t know whether I should be counting these birds or not, because after all, they are released birds for hunting!
River Yeo taken from the slope on Rook's Hill
Ravens. Carrion Crows, Rooks, Jackdaws, Wood Pigeons and Herring Gulls were all in the sky at some point, probably all at the same time once or twice. I did pick out a couple of Stock Doves and a Great Spotted Woodpecker flew over me as I began my walk back. A small flock of |Goldfinches flew into a tree as I neared the exit gate but there wasn’t any Siskins with them so I never attempted a picture.