3 October 2006

Local migration

The first thing I noticed on my walk around the Radford Semele fields today was the effect of heavy rain - the soil was slick on the hills where the water had poured off, the roads at the bottom were covered in soil and stones, and the horse paddock had a ferocious stream running through it where previously there had been a path. Our weather certainly seems to be more extreme at the moment - a mini-drought followed by ferocious rains, combined with consistently high temperatures (this September being the warmest since records began).

The second thing I noticed was the effects of autumn migration and the onset of winter - hedgerows full of warblers, fields full of feeding finch flocks (pardon the accidental alliteration), and birds calling all over the place.

Nothing special turned up, but there was plenty to keep me interested. Of note were good views of a Blackcap and Garden Warbler (plus half a dozen calling Chiffchaffs), 40 or more Swallows at the top of Pounce Hill with good numbers of of House Martin (ready for their journeys to Africa in the coming days), a female Reed Bunting and several Skylarks singing high above.

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