Sunday, 22 April 2018

April Arrivals

Spring is definitely here and each time I go out now there are more and more birds in the sky and in the trees. First of the migrants back for me were blackcap and chiffchaff:

The blackcap was sub-singing in the hedgerow outside my house. The last time I had a blackcap in March it was also sub-singing; the behaviour is usually associated with young birds at the end of the season.

Next back on 8th April were sand martin, swallow...

...and willow warbler:

The weather has been pretty foul, so the arrival of new birds (or my appetite to go looking for them) slowed down for a couple of weeks. I did manage to tick off corn bunting and redshank; the latter was feeding in a muddy pool in the field beyond my garden.

This weekend has been fair with a southerly wind and the increase in birds has been notable. Common whitethroat gave itself up yesterday with its chaotic song. House martin are starting to explore the eaves of the houses in the village, and one of my patch favourites, garden warbler, showed well near the river.

Snake Pilgrimage

Every year I head South of York to look for grass snakes and adder. Unfortunately, it looks as though I've missed the grassies and they've dispersed into the wetlands. Adder don't tend to stray as far from their hibernaculum and I found these two under some gorse bushes in the warm sunlight. The first adder was a beautiful golden colour that this photo does no justice for and was one fo the biggest adders I've ever seen.

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