A sunny day after several wet days saw the pair of Stonechats by Wemberham Lane with the regular (on calm days) Peregrine feeding on a pylon. 18 Redwings were in the orchard near the motorway and 16 Mute Swans were in a field nearby. There was a Green Sandpiper and a Grey Wagtail by Phipps Sluice on the River Yeo. Green Sandpipers are rare winter birds but warmer winters has seen an increase in numbers.
The Little River produced a Kingfisher, a Great Spotted Woodpecker and a good range of other species for my North End correspondent. Nearby the Chestnut Park Estate has good numbers of House Sparrows and Goldfinches.
By mid month Redwing numbers were building up and some Fieldfares arrived, first reported locally by the Little River. Small flocks of Chaffinches were In Wemberham Lane and there were Woodpigeons everywhere. A pair of Ravens were on the Peregrine’s favourite pylon so he relocated to another pylon towards Kingston Seymour. Wemberham Lane also produced a Grey Wagtail, Cetti’s warbler, Great Spotted Woodpecker and a family party of Long tailed tits. The first reported Woodcock of the winter was in Kings Wood on the 18th.
Cadbury Hill hosted a Treecreeper, Marsh Tit and Great Spotted Woodpecker mid month whilst dropped winter water levels on Kenn Moor saw an influx of Little Egrets. A Goosander was finding fish on the Land Yeo as were two Otters and 12 Cormorants perched up on pylons indicating that the fishing was good! A male Black Redstart favoured Littlewood warden John Croxton’s garden in Kenn. Redwings and Fieldfares were present in reasonable numbers around our patch with several Meadow Pipits and a Kestrel around the Hinkley Connect works. A Chiffchaff was in the YACWAG Kenn Moor Reserve and a Barn Owl reported late one evening in the Wemberham area.
Snipe numbers were low in Kenn Moor and Congresbury Moor Reserves no doubt due to the unusually dry field conditions
At the month end, following the storm and snow in the north, a large mixed flock of finches was in Littlewood. The birds were very flighty, perhaps as they had just arrived and more likely due to attention from the resident Sparrowhawk. The cold weather brought 100 Redwings on to the Chestnut Park Estate and there were good numbers of Blackbirds in our area, probably birds from the continent.