More hard weather refugees today, though due to my late morning arrival at the patch I got the feeling I was possibly just seeing the 'tail end' of any wader movements, and may have missed some birds going over earlier this morning. There was a noticeable increase in numbers of Fieldfare, and also more Lapwings flying over with flocks of (21) (22) and (3) single birds, fleeing the cold weather.
The freezing weather continues with very low temperatures overnight(-7.8°c) and not rising above freezing all day. More 'escape movements' today with Lapwing, Golden Plover, Cormorants and a single Common Snipe all flying over from late morning, with 5 of the Lapwing dropping into the horse paddocks along the Top Footpath to feed briefly. Also seen 1 Raven flying West, 2 Fieldfare, 16 Redwing, 6 Siskin. 'Hard Weather' movements :- 33 Golden Plover >SW 69 Lapwing (60 >W/SW) (9 >ESE) 1 Common Snipe >WSW 5 Cormorant >NE>N 1 Herring Gull >NW 1 Meadow Pipit >W
Golden Plover heading > SW and Cormorants 28/11/10
The freezing weather began to dig in today, bringing a dusting of snow overnight, a biting cold northerly wind and severe windchill. There were more signs of yesterdays cold weather movements gathering momentum, 25 Lapwing flew west and also 1 Common Snipe which circled high over Lutley Brook several times before flying southwest. Also seen of note :- 27+ Redwings, 2 Common Buzzard.
First signs of 'hard weather' movements today due to the current freezing weather. A flock of 14 Lapwings flew over heading West at 12.30pm, no doubt just the first of many to come in the next few days as birds flee the freezing conditions, especially if we get snow falling on top of the hard frozen ground. Also 3 Cormorants flew over heading West.
Also seen, 1 Common Buzzard feeding on worms in the horse paddocks along the Top Footpath, 3 Fieldfare, 37+ Redwing, 2 Siskin.
Just 'off patch', I found a superb flock of 20 Waxwings at 10.48am perched in a tree next to Thornhill Park Halesowen, and only a stones throw from my house! They were only perched for a couple of minutes, so i was pleased to get a few record photos, before the flock flew off!
A quick visit to Wassell Grove Pools today. There were 48+ Redwing in the hedgerows surrounding the pools and several flocks were seen flying over, though they were pretty mobile so an accurate count proved difficult. The highlight was a good sized flock of 24+ Siskins in the alders around the pools. Also of note 5+ Bullfinch, and 2 Coots were still present on the main pool.
At Wassell Grove Pools:- A flock of 12 Redwing flew over the entrance track to the pools, and approx 50 Redwings and 30+ Fieldfares were in the surrounding hedgerows. Also 10 Siskin flew over, and 2 Raven flew over >South.