Wednesday 6th April 2011 - Shenstone...its all about the Wagtails

Today, I managed to steal some time on what had been a busy day and got around the patch mid-afternoon. 

On the face of it things seamed really quiet (in terms of birdlife) with very little of note at Heath Lane or Stanklyn Lane.  I did however pick up a patch butterfly lifer today in the form of a ♂ Brimstone that flew over the paddocks.  You may think Brimstone ...a lifer?  well its not that common around the patch but does occur yet it has only been the past couple of years that I have started to take more of an interest in the butterflies.  I also had my first patch Holly Blue of the year along Heath Lane.  Also, there were good numbers of Small Tortoiseshell and Peacock on the wing.  I also recorded 3 Orange Tip (1♂).  A further 2 ♂ Orange Tips were seen down near Captains Pool by TS.

I then decided to check out Witch Lane.  The ploughed field that had produced the recent Wheatears was quiet but still held c.30 Linnet and a Common Buzzard.  But it was the plough opposite the old grainstore that was today's hot spot.  On the Plough here was a 'Channel Wagtail' (Motacilla flava flava x flavissima)...this is a hybrid between our British Yellow Wagtail and its continental cousin the Blue-headed Wagtail.  Also present in this field was a stunning ♂ Yellow Wagtail, 2 ♂ White Wagtails and 6 Pied Wagtails....Motacillatastic! (wonder if that word will catch on..probably not)

From Witch Lane I headed over to my final stop - the Sheep Field at Back Lane.  Only 1 Curlew was present today, but there was also a Raven and 2 Brown Hares in the field.

Channel Wagtail - 6th April 2011: 

(click on photo to see larger image)

Yellow Wagtail - 6th April 2011:

Brown Hares - 6th April 2011:


  1. Brimstones are a rarity here too Jase, I also had a Holly Blue today :-)

    Brilliant wagtial records mate !

  2. It's great to read your bird sightings, but I was amazed at the Brown hares. Do you see them often?

  3. You have done it, the Yellow Wagtail, I'm jealous.

  4. Thanks Warren...It was a great day. Days like today make it all worthwhile.

    Cheers Zoe glad you enjoy the blog.
    re. Hares: I tend to see a handful on the patch each year. But March/April is when they are easiest to see/find.

    Ha, cheers Bob...I'm sure you are due one down in your part of Gloucs soon

  5. Nice one on the Channel Wag Jase! Told you your plough would score!

  6. I agree, nice Channel Wag, Jason and well done on finally connecting with a Brimstone.

  7. Craig...cheers mate...yes the plough did finally deliver!

    Dean...thanks. It was a good day all round. But birds aside, I was dead chuffed about the Brimstone

  8. Nice collection of 'little movers'- had 3 Whites at Hagley Fields myself - nice to know somebody else is getting hits.

    Laurie -

  9. Cheers Laurie...its always worth checking the fields during spring and autumn never know what you may pick up