I arrived up at the Lockwood around 09:15 to find a slightly less morose than usual Kevin; he had just had a patch tick you see, Meadow Pipit. It had been a whole six days since his last and he had rather set his heart on one a day! You didn’t hear me complaining when I hadn’t had a patch tick for over a year!.....erm, well, moving on.Meadow Pipits trickled through all morning in small groups, I saw nearly 30, the first of the Autumn. They seem to have been seen in a number of London sites this morning. Also passing through were Sand Martins, though now they are split (see http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1474-919X.2011.01155.x/pdf) I couldn’t hand on heart say they weren’t Plain Martins, I’ll just leave them as Sand Martins though.
There were 5 Swifts still kicking around all morning which is getting quite late now. Sparrowhawks were much in evidence and it was difficult to be sure how many we were seeing, certainly 5+, maybe more. A local Peregrine was sat on the pylon by the Banbury eating it’s brunch (it’s not quite Breakfast, it’s not quite Lunch but you get a good meal and a slice of Canteloupe on the side). As Lol is away for a bit there is no one stopping me posting a fuzzy blob. (You think that’s bad wait till you (try and) see the Hobby).A Jackdaw moved South and a male Reed Bunting went West, a few Chaffinches and strangely Collared Doves also seemed to be on the move, though with both of them, as with Sparrowhawk, it’s difficult to separate migrants from residents. A few little Egrets were commuting up and down the valley.
Suddenly a Tern called, Kevin called Tern, they, for there were two of them, flew from behind some Willows and into view, I called Sandwich Tern. Both adults they just moved straight through over the Low Maynard. Similarly to the Martins, now that Sandwich Tern has been split could I honestly say they weren’t Cabot’s Terns? The good news is they were new for the patch for the year. I wasn't sure if I had seen Sandwich Tern on the patch before in September, it turns out I had.
The final fling was a Hobby low over the Ferry Boat Inn as I left, I chanced a picture but it got higher before I could get the phone on it, no sooner had I taken the shot (I told you the Peregrine wouldn’t seem so bad) there were two of them, they headed for right where I had been standing on the South end of the Lockwood, I headed for Tescos.
On this date:09 09 03 A Redstart and a Wheatear by the riding stables on Walthamstow Marsh a Lesser Whitethroat by the Marina.