Friday 25th March 2011 - Shenstone

Today a further 3 Great Crested Grebes arrived at Captains Pool making a grand total of 6 (TS). The pool is only really big enough to support 2 pairs at most so needless to say things began to kick off. Much posturing, shouting, fighting and attempted drownings ensued. You wouldn't think such stunning looking birds could be so viscous. I popped down to Captains to watch the soap opera unfold and whilst there I could also here a Chiffchaff singing at the dam end.

Afterwards TS and I did a tour of the patch. We started at Butts Lane which was fairly quiet with a ♂ Pied Wagtail on the plough, 4 Yellowhammers, a ♀ Kestrel and a few singing Skylarks being the only birds of note. A Comma & a Small Tortoiseshell were also seen here.

There was little of note at Heath Lane but the singing Chiffchaff was still present along the track opposite the model aircraft field.

The highlight of today's visit came at Stanklyn Lane. Whilst at the paddocks 63 Meadow Pipits dropped in and started feeding and perching up on the wires for 20 minutes or so before flying off North. Meadow Pipits may be regarded by some as LBJ's (little brown jobs) but they are actually smart looking birds and a very much a passage migrant at arable areas such as the patch. 2 Mistle Thrush were present at the paddocks and a Robin was flitting down to ground and back at 'Redstart hedge'. Another Small Tortoiseshell was seen here.

A Corn Bunting was singing further down Stanklyn Lane at Summerfield and a further 2 Corn Buntings flew past and up the field along the hedge line. A Peacock butterfly was also seen here.

A quick walk around the edge of Stanklyn Wood gave us good views of 3 Common Buzzard chasing low through the trees. A Song Thrush, a Goldcrest, a Coal Tit and a Moorhen were also present.

The final stop was Back Lane where there was no sign of any Curlew. The Chiffchaff was still present however. Another Small Tortoiseshell on the wing here.

Meadow Pipit - 25th March 2011:

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