Welcome to the Buteo Wildlife blog, a record of some of the wildlife that we have been seeing and occasional identification articles that will hopefully be useful for those trying to learn about wildlife.

If you enjoy reading this blog, join us on one of our tours - days and weekends looking for wildlife. Visit our website for details: www.buteowildlife.co.uk
Note that tours with clients may not always feature prominently on this blog because we are unlikely to have time for photography when out with clients - and walls of text don't tend to make the most interesting posts. If there is time for a few snatched photos they may not always be of the highest quality - but we'll use them anyway!

To try and keep posts in chronological order they may sometimes be given earlier dates/times than when they are actually posted. Apologies, for this - it's not meant to mislead anyone (and we will try to avoid this happening too often).

30 November 2012

Beachy Head (9th October 2012).

A visit to Eastbourne provided a good reason to spend some time on Beachy Head to search  for migrants. I chose to try the area near the Belle Tout lighthouse, where a small patch of mainly Sycamore woodland was a likely location for Firecrests, and perhaps even a Yellow-browed Warbler.
The Belle Tout lighthouse - no longer a working lighthouse, but still a land mark.

On arrival a Peregrine gave a close fly past soon after we got out of the car, and a Common Whitethroat gave a brief burst of song from nearby scrub - I have no idea why it chose to sing at this time of year on a rather overcast and breezy day, but migrant birds do occasionally sing during the autumn!

House Martins had gathered to feed in the more sheltered area around the woodland, with more House Martins, large numbers of Swallows, and much smaller numbers of Sand Martins also heading east along the coast. We later found out, after walking towards the cliff edge, that they were also passing by out to sea, again heading east. Meadow Pipits, "alba" wagtails (Pied and/or White Wagtails which could not be identified to subspecies), and Skylarks were also visibly on the move, again mostly heading east, and smaller numbers of Siskin, Lesser Redpoll, and Chaffinch also passed over.
A view towards the newer Beachy Head lighthouse (the black specks towards the right hand side of the photo are Swallows heading east along the cliff edge).

Goldcrests were very easily found in Belle Tout Wood, and it wasn't long at all before we found the first Firecrest among them - a much brighter, stripy headed gem than the accompanying Goldcrests. In total we probably saw about eight different Firecrests and several dozen Goldcrests in, and around, the wood, all feeding actively, hovering to pick at the underside of leaves.

Good numbers of Chiffchaffs, a Willow Warbler and a couple of Blackcaps were also present in the woodland and nearby scrub, as well as large numbers of Robins and Dunnocks

No comments:

Post a Comment