Today I decided to put some long overdue leg work in around my local patch. The prime reason for my visit was to undertake one of my walks for the BTO Winter Thrush Survey. The weather was dull and overcast but at least it remained dry.
I began my walk at the junction of Stanklyn Lane and Heath Lane early pm. Scanning the paddocks I noted 6 Blackbirds, 1 ♂ Yellowhammer, 2 Goldfinch, 1 Robin and a Greenfinch in 'redstart hedge'. on the ground nearby there were 2 Green Woodpeckers feeding. I also noted 2 Cormorants that flew over; an adult heading W and an immature heading SE.
Walking along the lane towards the enterance of the 'gallops field' I recorded 14 Blackbirds all feeding within the Hawthorn bushes along the roadside. The gallops was fairly quite although I did observe 4 more Blackbirds and a single Jay.
At 'carrot field' I hit a pocket of finch activity with c.40 Goldfinch, 27 Linnet, 6 Greenfinch & a ♀ Chaffinch recorded. Also present at this location was a flock of 18 House Sparrows and a further 4 Blackbirds. A single Fieldfare and a Cormorant flew over heading W.
Walking the top footpath across the 'beet field' proved to be birdless but viewing across the fields at Summerfield more than made up for this. A flock of 14 Skylarks were flushed by a dog walker and whilst I stopped and scanned I had 3 separate flocks of Redwing (45, 26 and 27) flew over all heading NW.
Walking the bottom path along the bottom of the 'beet field' I noted 12 Blackbirds, 1 Mistle Thrush and a Robin in the trees between the field and the Lane. 6 Skylark flew over heading W and a Cormorant was over heading SE.
Just as I walked a bit further I picked up a flock of 44 Corn Buntings that were feeding amongst the stubble and occasionally flying up to sit in the top of a nearby mature tree. This was the undoubted highlight of the walk as it was the first time I had encountered the winter flock this Autumn/Winter.
Just before completing my circuit I arrived at the stand of Holy bushes opposite the junction of Heath/Stanklyn. Feeding here were 16 Redwing, 5 Blackbirds, 1 Mistle Thrush and a Jay.