Bird News: June 2022

The Raven family returned to the Kingston Seymour pylon on the 1st and all three young have survived their first few months of life. A Peregrine perched a respectable two pylons away, the first seen at the Kingston end for some time. Also in Kingston a Mistle Thrush was singing in the churchyard to announce the Queen’s Jubilee(?) on the 2nd. Formerly widespread they are scarce breeding birds locally now.

Reed Warbler on the Strawberry Line (June 2022) by Mark Savage

The Strawberry Line count on the 3rd of the month yielded no surprises (it doesn’t usually in June) but 16 Reed Warblers singing underlined what a good year it has been for them. The ‘tick of the day’ was the lovely new information board at Yatton Junction, congratulations to all involved.

On the 6th I was surprised to be told of Lapwings exhibiting breeding behaviour at Wemberham. A quick visit produced four Lapwings with the males chasing off Gulls on a huge newly sown maize field. This seemed pretty bizarre as they are around two months late and the maize is currently three inches tall. I am not optimistic about their chance of success. A week later and despite the dry weather the crop is growing and the Lapwings were still present.

Marsh Tit by Emily Lomas

Our member at Cadbury Hill spotted a Marsh Tit and Emily reported a party of ten of them in Goblin Combe, presumably a family party. The Lapwings were still present on the 16th, one flew up to chase off a Buzzard. Skylarks were still singing at Wemberham where there were young Linnets with the Peregrine continuing to put in appearances on the pylons,

2022 really has been the year of the Reed Warbler. 17 singing males were recorded on the nature reserve stretch of the Strawberry Line compared to five on a similar date the previous year. Nearby the Willow Warbler was still singing on Congresbury Moor as was a Lesser Whitethroat with a youngster in tow. Barn Owls have been seen during the daytime on several occasions which is puzzling since there seems to be a good population of voles. The Congresbury section of the Line also produced a good variety of birds with Lesser Whitethroat still singing there in mid month and Bullfinch recorded regularly.

Stonechats and Lesser Whitethroats were feeding young on Congresbury Moor on the 16th and on the same day the five young ‘YACWAG’ Kestrels from some of our Owl boxes were all airborne. Later that afternoon a Red Kite flew over my house, I missed it but my neighbour photographed it. A pair of Siskins were still visiting a garden in Congresbury; they aren’t known to nest in North Somerset but regular appearances suggests that they do. The same garden hosted 19 House Sparrows some of which were drinking from water collected in teasel pods.

Red Kites appeared regularly towards the end of the month possibly attracted by local grass cutting activities. A group of three along with two Buzzards drifted over Congresbury and there were daily sightings in the Kenn Moor and Stowey area. A member kindly phoned me to say that one was circling over Yatton railway station and I was able to go outside and see it. A Kingfisher in Wemberham Lane was an unusual but very welcome summer record.

Finally, despite my pessimism, at least one Lapwing was still exhibiting nesting behaviour at Wemberham at the month end. Thanks to everyone who has sent reports, they are all helpful and much appreciated.

All the best,


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