7 March 2013

February flatters to decieve

A frankly disappointing February is over so now for the good stuff!

Highlights of the month

  • Firecrest feature in Bush Wood
  • Water Rail at last
  • Goldeneye patch gold
  • Jono multi-tasks: scoring Short-eared Owl while on a conference call with the US
  • Tony snaps a Yellowhammer
  • Waxwing sightings on the up
  • Gadwall numbers reach record high
  • Golden Plover calling over the SSSI
  • Knot added to my burgeoning  " ... if only I'd being paying a bit more attention!" list of misseds
  • Report of male Lesser-spotted Woodpecker calling yet to be substantiated
The little freeze was a disappointment.  We didn't even have time to think about putting apples up before it was over.  Just a sprinkling of Lapwing, a couple of large flocks of Fieldfare and a calling golden Plover and it was over.

Dan got the find of the month with another 4 Goldeneye to add to the 2 he found in the Autumn.  This lot stayed the day and looked set for the night, but instead set off in the night.

Mr Brown got a nice picture of a one day Yellowhammer that was consorting with Reed Bunting near the Esso Garage, the Larks began to sing and on a few days you could be mistaken to think that Spring had sprung.  Not a lot to say as I am off to bed now for an early start to hunt for Wheatear.

1st February

Wanstead Flats: Short-eared Owl NW over flats (J Lethbridge).

4th February

Wanstead Flats: Siskin, 9 Pochard, 20 + Tufted Duck, 10 + Gadwall, 2 Shoveler, Skylark, 3 Meadow Pipit, 2 Pied Wagtail (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: Lesser Redpoll, Siskin, Kestrel, 70 + Gadwall, 2 f Shoveler, 10 + Pochard (Nick Croft)

5th February

Wanstead Flats: Chiffchaff Cat & Dog pond (Steve Thorpe)

6th February

Wanstead Flats: Kestrel (Steve Thorpe), Common Snipe, 7 Shoveler, 7 Pochard, 13 Gadwall,15+ Tufted Duck, 4 Meadow Pipit, 4 Stock Dove (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park: 100+ Gadwall, 9 Shoveler, m Teal, Goldcrest (Nick Croft/Steve Thorpe)

7th February

Wanstead Flats: 20 Fieldfare, 5 Meadow Pipit and one with distinctly aberrant behaviour which has been around for about a week on its own in the boggy part of the SSSI - no calls and skulking, Siskin, 2 Stock Dove, 5 Gadwall, 2 Shoveler, 3 Pochard (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: c100 Gadwall, 5 Pochard, 3 Teal, Little Grebe, Lesser Redpoll, Siskin, Stock Dove (Nick Croft)

8th February

Wanstead Flats: 2 Snipe, 8 Meadow Pipit (mystery solved), 2 Pied Wagtail,  2 Skylark, 2 Reed Bunting, Siskin, 20 Fieldfare, Sparrowhawk, 2 Gadwall, 10 Tufted Duck (Nick Croft/Tim Harris/Bob Vaughan).

Wanstead Park: 100+ Gadwall, 60+ Tufted Duck, 2 Teal, 6 Pochard, Little Grebe, Siskin, Sparrowhawk, Goldcrest (Nick Croft).

10th February

Wanstead Park: 258 Gadwall (a site record), plus 15 Shoveler, 16 Pochard, 83 Tufted Duck, Great Crested Grebe, Little Grebe (Tim Harris).

11th February

Wanstead Flats: 20 Waxwing on Lake House Road flew towards Bush Wood (JL), Golden Plover (h) west over north end of SSSI (NC), Yellowhammer with 2 Reed Bunting nr Esso Copse (TB), 6 Fieldfare, 16 Meadow Pipit, 4 Skylark, 10 Shoveler, 20 + Gadwall, 6 Pochard, Kestrel (Nick Croft/Jonathan Lethbridge/Tony Brown)

Wanstead Park: 104 Fieldfare south through Old Sewage Works, 20 Redwing by stables, 3 Goldcrest, Gadwall (yesterday a record count of 260 birds during WEBs count), 10 Pochard, Bullfinch, 4 Siskin (Nick Croft)

12th February

Wanstead Flats: f Teal, 9 Shoveler, 7 Pochard, 7 Gadwall, Little Grebe, 3 Fieldfare, 20 Meadow Pipit, 2 m Reed Bunting (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 150+ Gadwall, 10+ Pochard, 2 Shoveler, m Teal, 6+ Siskin, Lesser Redpoll, Redwing (Nick Croft)

13th February

Wanstead Flats: 140 Fieldfare, 4 Shoveler, 3 Pochard, 10 Gadwall, 20 Tufted Duck, 4 Teal north,  Kestrel, 15 Meadow Pipit (Cat & Dog Pond), 3 Pied Wagtail (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 143 Gadwall, 9 Pochard, 60 + Tufted Duck, m Teal, Stock Dove, Grey Wagtail, Siskin (Nick Croft)

14th February

Wanstead Flats: Common Snipe, Reed Bunting in SSSI (Tim Harris).

15th February

Wanstead Flats: 4 Skylark (2 singing), 7 Meadow Pipit, 18 Gadwall, 10 Shoveler (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 2 Firecrest (Bush Wood), 15 + Goldcrest, singing Coal Tit, Sparrowhawk, Nuthatch, 190 Gadwall, 13 Shoveler, 3 Teal, 5 singing Stock Dove, Skylark north over Bush Wood (Nick Croft)

20th February

Wanstead Flats: Kestrel, Meadow Pipit (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 4 Goldeneye (3m/1f) present all day seen slumbering on Perch at 17:00 (Dan Hennessy), 50+ Gadwall, 4 Pochard, 60+ Tufted Duck, singing Coal Tit, 6 Goldcrest, 1-2 Firecrest (Bush Wood - DH/NC/Alan Hobson), Reed Bunting, Little Egret, displaying Great Crested Grebe (The Basin - Steve Thorpe), Lesser Redpoll, Siskin (NC/Bob Vaughan), pr Bullfinch Old Sewage Works (Nick Croft)

21st February

Wanstead Flats: possible Knot caning it west down Aldersbrook Rd 09:00, 10 Shoveler, 2 Gadwall, 25 Tufted Duck, 2 Egyptian Goose, 6 Meadow Pipit, 4 Skylark, Reed Bunting, Kestrel (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 9 Waxwing Wanstead Park Avenue (Tim Harris), Firecrest Bush Wood (Barry Bishop), c. 50 Gadwall, 10 Pochard, pr of Teal, Goldcrest (Nick Croft)

23rd February

Wanstead Park: 100+ Gadwall, 24 Shoveler, 1 Common Teal, 15 Pochard, 28 Fieldfare, 20 Redwing, Firecrest (Bush Wood), Nuthatch (Reservoir Wood), 20+ Siskin (TH and ELBF team)

24th February

Wanstead Park: male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker calling 50yds from Warren Rd entrance (Geoff Harding). Bush Wood - at least 1 Firecrest still (David Bradnum)

25th February

Wanstead Flats: 14 Fieldfare, 2 Redwing, 6 Meadow Pipit, 4 Skylark, 6 Shoveler, 2 Egyptian Goose, Pochard, 2 Reed Bunting, 30 + Goldfinch in SSSI, Kestrel (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: 10 Siskin, 2 Pochard, 50 + Gadwall (Nick Croft)

26th February

Wanstead Flats: 3 Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Skylark, 2 Shoveler, 6 Tufted Duck, 2 Mistle Thrush (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park: 70+ Gadwall, 30+ Tufted Duck, 3 Pochard, Siskin (Nick Croft). Pair of Tawny Owls calling in Bush Wood at 19:30 (Tim Harris).

27th February

Wanstead Flats: 3 Linnet, 4 Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, 4-7 Skylark, Kestrel, 5 Fieldfare, Redwing, 2 Stock Dove, 5 Pochard, 10 Tufted Duck (Nick Croft)

Wanstead Park: Siskin, 60 + Gadwall, 2 Great Black-backed Gull east over plain with Herring Gull in tow (Nick Croft)

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