Thursday, 8 April 2010

Blue sky thinking

Met up with Lol early(ish) this morning to give the Southern end of the patch a good workover. Wandered around the back of the Ice Skating Rink, then off patch through the Middlesex F. B. but nothing much was doing, past the Pitch'n'Putt Course and more of the same, though it was warming up and the odd Butterfly appeared (Comma). Onto the Waterworks and a few bits started to show, a half dozen Sand Martins prospecting the unused concrete coloumn, perhaps someone should tell them its for their use! An unseen Cetti's was very vocal, a Green Sandpiper fed in one of the better beds. Back across Lea Bridge Rd. and onto the marsh proper Blackcaps made themselves noticed with probably double figures throughout the morning, possibly the same with Chiffchaff and just a few less Willow Warblers. The Little Owls refused to give themselves up and the Horse paddock, unusually, had no Wagtails of any flavour, let alone flava.

I had often thought about a big-sit type skywatch on a raised bank backing onto the Eastern edge of the Walthamstow F.B. about 600m North of the riding stables and today, with it's gorgeous clear blue sky felt like a 'big bird' day, so we sat and watched. We had just had the first Sparrowhawk and Kestrel of the morning so Raptors were obviously awakening and as I followed a large Gull across the sky a Buzzard suddenly appeared in my bins, you will understand it was quite high if I say that my directions to Lol were 'just up and Right of the Moon'. It was very difficult to get in the scope due to the beatiful, but featureless, blue sky. As we watched it circle getting higher another came in from the East, behind us but soon dissappeared. Lol repaid me by finding a slightly lower House Martin, my first for the year.

We looped back down the Eastern side of a fairly empty marsh finding 3 female Wheatears and a Mistle Thrush had dropped into the Horse Paddock whilst we were away. The Owls still did not want to come out to play though, and on such a lovely day, shame.

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