This morning I decided to spend some time working the patch. My first port of call was Witch Lane and within minutes of scanning the freshly sown field I picked up the undoubted highlight of the day, a ♀/imm. Merlin that flew low across the field heading SSW and eventually out of sight. This was most pleasing as it is the first Merlin that I have recorded at Shenstone this Autumn/Winter.
Its not surprising that the Merlin had flew low through this area as there was plenty of food for the diminutive falcon in the form of c.100 Chaffinch and c.40 Linnet. Also noted in the Witch Lane area were a ♂ Kestrel and a Common Buzzard.
At Heath Lane it was an altogether different picture and with a single Redwing near the Granary Hotel being the only bird of note I quickly made my way down to Stanklyn Lane.
At the 'beet field' there were still 31 Corn Buntings present and in the hedgerows there I noted 12 Redwings and 3 Jays. In the 'carrot field' (which incidentally hasn't had carrots in for the last 3 years) there were 3 Yellowhammers, c.60 Chaffinch and c.30 Starling.
Further down the lane the small stand of Hawthorns near the horse paddocks was chuffing with winter thrushes with 36 Redwing, 5 Fieldfare and 6 Scandinavian type Blackbirds noted in this small area. On the deck in the paddocks were 2 Pied Wagtails. A single Meadow Pipit flew over heading SSE.
My final stop was the Barrs/Butts Lane area. Here there was a small flock of 6 Corn Buntings were present perched up in one of the trees along the lane. In the triangle field there were good numbers of birds present with c80 Fieldfare, c.40 Redwing and c.70 Linnet observed.
No patch Brambling as yet this Autumn/Winter but I'm sure it won't be long now that the finches are starting to flock together.
Redwing - Stanklyn Lane