Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Patch 2016 - The Impenetrable Field

The first port of call on the patch walk is the Impenetrable Field. Left to grow wild, this has become a mass of impenetrable hawthorn, bramble, and now other tree species beginning to emerge such as oak. Its one of the most difficult parts to watch as so little of it is visible. Generally I can hear birds but not see them.

What I hear in winter is Bullfinch, usually giving those quiet piping notes, and if you stand long enough a pair flies over, Chaffinch, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Long Tailed Tit, Goldcrest, Wren, RobinDunnock and Magpie. Usually a Blackbird too. Quite often there are Redwings in the bushes possibly up to twenty or so but they chatter away unseen in the depths of the field. Occasionally a small flock of Linnets up to 20 in number flies up from the far corner.

Come Spring and this is warbler heaven. The only regular Willow Warbler on the patch songs from the Eastern Edge, this year first heard on 19th April. Chiffchaff (25th March) and Blackcap (7th April) are regular in here, as are Lesser Whitethroat on the southern edge of the field, first heard on 12th April. The only Garden Warbler on the patch was first seen on 12th May and heard from the field on a few occasions after.

Green Woodpecker are regularly seen on the southern edge of the field too.

One other resident of the field this year was a very vocal Muntjac Deer. Here’s a photo of the beast showing the density of the bushes in the field behind, and a newly arrived Blackcap on the plot.

It will be interesting to see how this field develops; whether some taller trees begin to crowd out the bushes, and also what birds these changes bring.


Steve Gale said...

That's a good early date for Lesser Whitethroat - Beat's my earliest local record.

DorsetDipper said...

got me checking the date there Steve. 12th was a red-letter day on the patch as will become apparent. my note says 1 seen and heard. next visit was 19th with one singing, 3 on 21st.