Showing posts from June, 2015

Melodiuos Warbler at Marsh Lane

Friday 19th June 2015
I travelled to the West Midlands this afternoon to meet up with Paul Fitzgerald and do a bit of a twitch. After eight days, the singing male MELODIOUS WARBLER at Marsh Lane, near Hampton in Arden, was thankfully still present. A very obliging bird, and regularly singing its incredibly varied song, it was a real joy to observe. Further interest was provided by a Hobby overhead and a Painted Lady.
The MW favours these bushes, along the bridleway east of the A452 at GR SP227803, south of Mill Covert: After having our fill, Paul took me to the fantastic nearby Marsh Lane Nature Reserve. The best bird here was a summer-plumaged Black-necked Grebe, present for its second day on Railway Pool. We had to avoid parking in the car park as a Little Ringed Plover pair had set up home right in the middle of it. Although the nest is protected by a cage, I'm not sure it's the safest of nest sites.
Another highlight was the Orchids: Common Twayblade, Southern Marsh Orchid

The Saul Reed Warbler

Friday 5th June 2015
Use your Emargination (apologies, I couldn't resist that one!)
After  hearing it and seeing it only briefly on Tuesday evening, I went for another look at the Reed Warbler at Saul Junction at lunchtime. It has a very varied song, recalling at times Marsh, but for me it isn't that unusual but interesting nonetheless. It splits it's time singing-wise between the hawthorn bushes and the reeds nearer the path. It seems that when it is in the reeds its song has more of the chug-chug type notes that when it is in the bushes. Perhaps it is auditioning as a Marsh Warbler - but it will never be one :) There is an excellent comparison of Reed and Marsh on the Portland Bird Obs website here which I found extremely useful:
Here's a bit of footage with audio:

Insects at Frampton

Friday 15th May 2015
Some photos here I took at Frampton on a sunny afternoon off shortly before my holiday.