June 30, 2010

Pics - June 2010

3 baby Little Ringed Plovers (day old), 30th June
Fairlop Gravel Works

June 30th 2010

Fairlop Gravel Works:
  • 4 Grey Heron, 35 Black Headed Gull
  • c30 Lesser Black Backed Gull and Herring Gull mixed flock
  • Shelduck
  • Little Grebe
  • c90 Lapwing, 2 Green Sandpiper
  • 7 Little Ringed Plover, 4 adults and 3 day old chicks (at last!!!)
  • Grey Wagtail
  • c30 House Martin, 2 Swallow
  • singing Skylark
  • c10 Stock Dove
  • 10+ Reed Warbler including 6 singing male, and fledged young
  • Sedge Warbler
  • fledged Goldfinch

Gants Hill, Roll Gardens:

  • Sparrowhawk being tailed by 10 Swifts.
  • 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker (AThomas)

Roding Valley Park, south:

  • Little Egret feeding
  • Two Jays (together)
  • Greenfinch several
  • Mallard - one female with 6 offspring (PGordon)

Wanstead Flats:

  • (07:00-11:00):
  • Common Sandpiper (briefly on Alexandra Lake),
  • Nuthatch (heard in wood behind the Esso garage - patch mega),
  • 35 Cormorant,
  • 13 Mistle Thrush,
  • 9 Ring Necked Parakeet,
  • 7 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Green Woodpecker,
  • 4 Lesser Black-backed Gull, 3 Black-headed Gull, Common Gull, Herring Gull,
  • c.150 Carrion Crows on the playing fields, Jay, Magpie, Jackdaw,
  • 5 House Martin, 1 Sand Martin, c.30+ Swift,
  • 3 Sparrowhawk,
  • 4 Linnet, Chaffinch, Greenfinch,
  • 1 Reed Bunting, Pied Wagtail and the usuals (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park:

  • Little Grebe with young on Shoulder of Mutton Pond (JCharter)
  • 8 Chiffchaff, 10+ Blackcap, Whitethroat,
  • Swallow, numerous Swift,
  • 2 Collared Dove, 1 Stock Dove,
  • 2 Sparrowhawk,
  • Little Grebe, 2 Great Crested Grebe, Grey Heron etc. (Nick Croft).

Wanstead, Old Sewage Works:

  • Lesser Whitethroat (Nick Croft)

June 29, 2010

June 29th 2010

Fairlop Waters:

  • male Kestrel by the boating lake

Gants Hill, Roll Gardens:

  • Sparrowhawk - A male seen at 8.35 am flying straight into our tree but couldn't see if it had caught anything due to dense cover.
  • Red Kite - Observed at 3.33pm from back bedroom window with bins - clearly no mistaking triangle shape tail with long wings & markings gliding over somewhere between back of Roll gardens & Barkingside recreational park area...I tried to get our camera from my main bedroom to get a shot of it but alas the time I found the camera it was gone when I got back to window -I did however wait by the window up until 4pm but there was still no sign of it.
  • Great Spotted woodpeckers - 2 Juveniles & 1 adult male frequently visiting garden on a daily basis.
  • Goldfinch Plus usual array of garden birds & juveniles. (Alan Thomas)

Ilford, garden:

  • Jacldaw (garden tick)
  • I was so excited to see a pair of hedgehogs in the garden last night!
    Lots of snuffling and grunting so hopefully some baby hedgehogs soon?(Barbara J)

Valentines Park:

  • Great Crested Grebe still sitting on eggs - this bird deserves a medal for perseverance!
  • Young Grey Heron flapping about on Long Water
  • family of 2 adult and 4 young Egyptian Geese all still ok on the baoting lake (Barbara J)

Wanstead, Windsor Road:

  • Ring Necked Parakeet over the garden (JLethbridge)

Woodford Green, Broadmead Estate:

  • Dunnock calling from the top of the railings by my flat (DEH)

June 28, 2010

June 28th 2010

Five Oaks Lane Scrubland:
  • 1 Pheasant flushed
  • Little Owl perched on a post near the equestrian centre
  • female Sparrowhawk
  • 1 Meadow Pipit
  • 10 Swift overhead
  • 2 families of Green Woodpecker with fledged young - totaling 9 birds, Great Spotted Woodpecker heard
  • 20+ Whitethroat, 5 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap, 6 Willow Warbler
  • 4 Singing Song Thrush
  • also families of Chaffinch and Great Tit with fledged young
  • 5 Linnet
  • 11 male Yellowhammers singing (DEH)
Ilford, garden:
  • Sparrowhawk eating his breakfast, early morning on the lawn in my garden (MCondon)
Wanstead Park:
  • Hobby flew out of the park and over the A406 at 6.30pm (DEH)

Pics - June 2010

male Sparrowhawk eating Pigeon on the lawn- Ilford Garden (MCondon)

Grey Wagtail, Valentines Park, June 27th 2010 (Mike COndon)

Mute Swan at Valentines Park, MCondon

Look who is out and about... 2 of the juvenile Grey Herons, Valentines Park (MCondon)

The Egyptian Goose Family doing well, Valentines Park - June 27th 2010 (MCondon)

One of the 'ornamental' Muscovy Ducks at Valentines Park, (Helen McKean)

June 27, 2010

June 27th 2010

Aldborough Riding School, Fairlop:
  • 2 Buzzard circling low at 2.3opm
  • 2 House Martin

Fairlop Gravel Works:

  • south side of Painters Road (area D):
  • 2 Shelduck, 2 f Teal, 2 Tufted Duck
  • c100 Lapwing (including many juveniles), 3 Little Ringed Plover, Green Sandpiper
  • c20 Stock Dove
  • c10 Linnet
  • 2 Swallow
  • male Reed Bunting
  • north side of Painters Road:
  • another (3rd) Buzzard over (south), definately a different bird from the other 2, as it was much lighter markings.
  • male Kestrel sitting on a post
  • a few Lapwing
  • 2 Redshank furiously guarding young family.
  • c30 Swift
  • 12 Stock Dove
  • Cormorant, Grey Heron, 4 Tufted Duck, several Pochard,
  • 6 Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler, 2 Whitethroat
  • 2 singing Skylark

Ilford, Vaughan Gardens:

  • A pair of herons apparently having a domestic argument overhead about the delights of Valentines Park against Wanstead Park, possibly the pair that bred in Valentines Park, or a parent chasing off a fledged young? (sighting: Duncan Paterson)

Roding Valley Park, south:

  • Little Egret (Jonathan Makengo)

South Woodford:

  • Little Egret (over) (DEH)

Valentines Park:

  • Little Grebe on the fish pond.
  • 2 Great Crested Grebe on the boating lake, (still on nest)
  • 4 Grey Heron, 3 young flying around now, 1 adult high over
  • 12 Mute Swan (pr & 8 cygnets on the baoting lake, pr on Fish Pond
  • 6 Egyptian Geese (pr & 4 ducklings)
  • Canada Geese, 1 hybrid Greylag Goose, Mallards, Tufted Ducks, Moorhen, Coot
  • 1 male Shoveler in eclipse plumage
  • Feral Pigeon, 1 Stock Dove, Woodpigeons,
  • 7 Swift
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker (all young have now fledge the nest site)
  • several Green Woodpecker calling (1 seen)
  • Pied Wagtail on Ilford Cricket Club pitch
  • 2 Grey Wagtail at the eastern end of Cranbrook Cut investigating the barred water outflow
  • Wren, 2 Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird, 4 Mistle Thrush
  • 2 male Blackcap (Dell and Plantation)
  • 5 Long Tailed Tit going along the canopy by the old pitch and put fence, Blue Tits, Great Tits,
  • Jay, Magpie, Carrion Crows, Starlings, 11 House Sparrow,
  • 5 Chaffinch, 2 singing male Greenfinch, 4 Goldfinch (MCondon)
  • Red Kite (north at 7.30pm)
  • 2 male Goldcrest
  • 12 Jackdaw
  • 45 Swift (Howard Vaughn)

Wanstead Flats:

  • Here are some highlights:
  • Little Grebe (very vocal adult on Alex)
  • Moorhen (juvenile)
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker (family group with at least 1 juvenile, East Copse)
  • Skylark (15 singing birds, plus another 8 individuals; 2 family groups)
  • House Martins (5 birds collecting mud for nests at Alex. They collected, flew off, then presumably the same group returned a few minutes later)
  • Meadow Pipit (4 singing birds, plus another 3 individuals)
  • Reed Bunting (2 singing males, SSSI) (THarris)

Chigwell, Chigwell Lane: (just outside the borough)

  • Hobby, 6.30pm (DEH)

June 26, 2010

Pics - June 2010

one of the Aldborough Riding School Little Owls (ABlackman)

June 26th - 2010

Aldborough Hatch Riding School, Fairlop:
  • Today visited the Little Owl's for the 3rd night this week, and saw two of them out, and hunting and maybe one Juvenile, since the other owl was calling a lot, and alarming especially because of a wondering fox, the time we went was between 8:30pm and 9:30pm which seem perfect at this time of year.
  • Also there might be Green woodpeckers nesting as we constantly saw two of them flying in and out of the same tree.
  • Counted 30+ Swifts (Alex Blackman)

Valentines Park:

  • Mallard with 3 ducklingson Horse Pond (TLachhar)

Roding Valley Nature Reserve: (just outside the borough)

  • Whitethroats (several), Reed Warbler
  • Song Thrush, Blackbird,
  • Carrion Crow,
  • Redstart
  • Mute Swans (2), Great-created Grebe on nest & one on the water,
  • Coot on nest & coots on the water,
  • Canada Geese (no goslings),
  • House Sparrows, Starlings, lots of juvenile Pied Wagtails,
  • Swifts,
  • Little Egret flying over the main lake, and then along the river in a flypast!!
  • Green Woodpeckers, hybrid Mallard, Tufted Ducks and Pochard. (Emma Charles)

June 25, 2010

June 25th - 2010

Woodford Green, Tesco:
  • Kestrel - Seen at 17.45pm Gliding & hovering opposite Tesco's over Roding valley park. (Alan Thomas)
Wanstead Park:
  • the escaped White Cheeked Turaco was in Resevoir Wood again today (PFerris)

Wanstead, Windsor Road:

  • the escaped White Cheeked Turaco was also in my garden today (JLethbridge)

Pics - June 2010

the escaped White Cheeked Turaco was in Resevoir Wood, and also JLe's garden in Wanstead again today, June 25th (pic by J Le)

Ring Necked Parakeets are visiting my garden most days now,

SHammond - Aldersbrook

June 24, 2010

June 24th 2010

Aldersbrook, garden:
  • 2+ Ring Necked Parakeet visiting my garden most days now (Sally Hammond)
Knighton Woods:
  • Mallard with c10 nearly full grown ducklings
  • Fledged Moorhens, and another adult Moorhen on nest
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker and Chiffchaff heard
  • Nuthatch with fledged young (at least 2) (DEH)

South Woodford, Chigwell Road:

  • male Sparrowhawk flying low over Chigwell Road, near Charlie Browns car wash, towards Roding Valley Park, carrying small prey (looked like a small bird or chick)

South Woodford, garden:

  • Sparrowhawk over again at 7.30pm paying no attention to an abundance of House Sparrows (PGordon)

Valentines Park:

  • Jackdaws - 1 youngster being fed by adult. Heard 3 others in trees nearby calling to each other, but couldn't see if adults or young... Anyway nice to confirm them breeding here.
  • Also Great Spotted Woodpecker and Green woodpecker.
  • 4 Egyptian Geese goslings ok,
  • Great Crested Grebe still patiently sitting! (Barbara J)

Woodford Green, garden:

  • I've Just had 2 Ring-Necked Parakeets over the garden.
  • Also of note is an adult male Stag beetle seen flying around the front garden on consecutive evenings at around 21.45! (Tony Brown)

June 23, 2010

June 23rd 2010

Aldborough Riding School, Fairlop:

  • Little Owl in the usual tree (nest site), but admittedly, on a different branch than usual! (DEH)

Fairlop Gravel Works:

  • The north side of Painters Road only (not Area D)
  • Grey Heron
  • Pochard family still with 7 ducklings
  • Pheasant calling
  • 4 Coot families, Moorhens, Little Grebe, Tufted Ducks, 2 Gadwall
  • Lapwing guarding young
  • as suspected... the pair Redshank have bred -1 parent was going mental as I approached the silt lagoon bank, so i backed off, and watched her call from a post, then move to the small island where she called to her young 1 of which emerged from the undergrowth, a 2nd was being tended to out of sight, (perhaps more)... Young looked to be day old... very beautiful! The other parent was visiting from time to time, cirlcing the site, keeping watch.
  • female Sparrowhawk, low (over)
  • 2 Swallow
  • female Yellow Wagtail gathering food! (probably breeding locally)
  • 6 Reed Warbler, including at least 4 singing male
  • 3 Sedge warbler including 2 singing male
  • 2 male Reed Bunting (singing)
  • Greenfinch (DEH)

Fairlop Waters:

  • 2 Stock Dove (DEH)

June 22, 2010

June 22nd 2010

Aldborough Riding School, Fairlop:
  • Little Owl on a telegraph pole on Painters Road, near the nest site (DEH)

Fairlop Gravel Works:

  • south side of Painters Road:
  • Grey Heron, Cormorant, 1 Black Headed Gull
  • 6 Tufted Duck, Canada Geese, Coots, Mallards,
  • 45 Lapwing (flock slowly building up),
  • Green Sandpiper
  • 5 Little Ringed Plover
  • Hobby flying low over the site
  • 2 Pheasant
  • 2 singing Skylark
  • 11 Stock Dove
  • fledged Pied Wagtail families
  • 2 House Martin
  • 3 Whitethroat, 8 Linnet, male Reed Bunting
  • 2 Brown Hare!

Roding Valley Park, central:

  • 5 Song Thrushes,
  • 3 Green Woodpeckers [adult and two juveniles, which have fledged safely],
  • 6 Blackcaps [inc. a female feeding three juveniles, which have fledged safely],
  • Goldfinch,
  • 2 Whitethroats,
  • several Swift,
  • Long Tailed Tit,
  • Chiffchaff. (Alan Hobson)

Valentines Park:

  • Good News!... Speculation was right... The Egyptian Geese pair have hatched a 2nd brood or ducklings, after losing their first brood to Carrion Crows last month!... They have 4 ducklings this time, and have marched them over to the boating lake island. (John Crick)
  • 2 Little Grebe (1 on each lake), 2 Great Crested Grebe (sitting on nest)
  • 3 juv Grey Herons still on, or around the nest
  • 12 Mute Swan (pr on Fish Pond, pr+8 on Boating Lake)
  • Canada Geese, Mallard, 2 male Pochard (boating lake), Coot, Moorhen,
  • Feral Pigeon, Wood Pigeon,
  • Ring Necked Parakeet at the eastern end of Cranbrook Cut
  • Great Spotted Woodpeckers: The parents are still feeding the "singing tree" in the Plantation. Many singleton skattered across the park, 2 Green Woodpecker (others calling)
  • also: Wren, 3 Robin, Blackbird, Mistle Thrush, Blue Tit, Great Tit, 4 Long Tailed Tit, 2 Jay, Magpie, Carrion Crow, few Starling, 5 House Sparrow, 3 Chaffinch, 1 Greenfinch (Mike Condon)
  • 39 Canada Geese, Hybrid Greylag Goose, 1 Black Headed Gull, 8 Starling, Dunnock Also, unfortunately 3 rats - 2 on bank of fish lake, 1 very close to island on boating lake. Not good news for geese. (MSevoir)

Wanstead Flats:

  • (07:00-11:00): Hobby (over Alexandra Lake),
  • Shelduck (West over Alexandra Lake),
  • c. 100 Swifts over Alexandra Lake (more elswhere) after flying ants I presume, later joined by two groups of Black-headed Gull totalling c.50-60) and numerous Starlings,
  • 32 Cormorant, 14 Lesser Black-backed Gull,
  • 2 Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, 7 Greater Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Green Woodpecker,
  • c.135 Carrion Crow on the playing fields,
  • House Sparrow, Blackbird, 3 Mistle Thrush, Robin, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long-Tailed Tit, Skylark, Wren, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Reed Bunting, Wood Pigeon, 1 Stock Dove, Herring Gull, Magpie, Jay, Meadow Pipit, Dunnock, 3 Chiffchaff, Blackcap, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Canada Goose, Mallard, 10 Tufted Duck, 1 Gadwall, Mute Swan (+4 cygnets), Ring Necked Parakeet, m Kestrel, Pied Wagtail, 5 House Martin, Moorhen, 4 Little Grebe (no young seen), and Coot (the predictable has happened no coot to be seen on the rapidly diminishing round pond, even the froglets were evacuating in their thousands, I wonder how many people will go home today with frog on their shoes) (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park:

  • 4 Cormorant,
  • 5 Greater Spotted Woodpecker, 3 Green Woodpecker,
  • c50-100 Swift over Heronry,
  • 3 Lesser Black-backed Gull, large numbers of Black-Headed Gull, 1 Herring Gull,
  • 1 Stock Dove, Mistle Thrush, 8 Song Thrush, 2 Ring Necked Parakeet, c20 Jackdaw, 2 Jay, 6 Chiffchaff, 2 Willow Warbler, numerous Blackcap and Whitethroat, 2 Garden Warbler, 6 Little Grebe, 1 Great Crested Grebe, Sand Martin and 2 House Martin, Mute Swan (2 broods totalling 11 cygnets). No sign of the Reed Warbler (Nick Croft).

Woodford Bridge, St. Judes Court:

  • Hobby
  • a few Swift
  • 2 Lesser Black Backed Gulls, 2 Mallard (AHobson)

Woodford Bridge, Claybury Road:

  • 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers [adult and juvenile, safely fledged],
  • Goldfinch (AHobson)

Pics - June 2010

The Egyptian Goose family at Valentines Park (Boating Lake)
Mike Condon

And a young Coot family - M Sevoir
And back to Mr & Mrs. Al Fayed
photo: Madeleine Sevoir

June 21, 2010

June 21st 2010

weather: luvly - first day of summer!

Claybury Park:

  • 2 Stock dove,
  • 3 Nuthatch, 1 Treecreeper,
  • 3 Whitethroat, 1 Chiffchaff, 4 Blackcap,
  • Dunnock carrying food,
  • lots of Blue and Great tits including several family groups, also newly fledged Magpies and Robin. (IWoodward)

Fairlop, Hainault Road:

  • Hobby 5.45pm (DEH)

Hainault Forest High School Field:

  • Mistle Thrush (DEH)

Roding Valley Park, central:

  • c20 Swift (DEH)

Roding Valley Park, north:

  • Sedge Warbler (TLachhar)

Woodford Bridge Pond, St. Pauls Church:

  • 46 Mallard, 2 broods Moorhen (2 pairs).

Pics - June 2010

pics - PGordon, south woodford section of Roding Valley Park
Little Egret
Reed Warbler
There has been a real increase in Reed Warblers in the borough this year.
During 2009 there were only 3 confirmed breeding pairs... this year there have been c15 singing males!

June 20, 2010

June 20th 2010

Aldborough Riding School:

  • Little Owl perched on his usual branch of the nest site tree at 4pm (DEH)

Fairlop Waters:

  • I couldn't count the swifts, there were so many. At times it felt like Daphne du Maurier/Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" - I was almost swatting them away like mosquitos! They were flying at knee-height at times, and several times I had to duck out of their way.
  • Small birds wisely keeping under cover in cold wind - heard several Wrens, Chiffchaffs, robins and blackbird but didn't see them.
  • This is what I did see: Mute swan (1), Canada geese (lots, including a pair on the bank of the angling lake with 6 cygnets huddled together - except that one moved and turned out to be a rabbit!), Greylag Geese - about 6 on the sailing club slipway, Great crested grebes (3 on sailing lake), Mallards, Coots, Moorhens, Tufted ducks, Wood pigeons, Collared dove (1), Stock dove (2), Blue tit (1), Great tit (1), Greenfinch (1 - others heard), Chaffinch (3 - others heard), Magpie (2), Carrion crow (3), Pied wagtail (7), Swift, Whitethroat (1 - several more singing) (MSevoir)

Hainault Forest CP:

  • Hobby showing well over the farmers market at 2pm (DEH)

Ilford, Cranbrook Road:

  • Do you get carrion pigeons? There were 3 feral pigeons feeding on the remains of a squashed squirrel in Cranbrook Road this morning! (MSevoir)

Valentines Park:

  • pair of Great Crested Grebe, still sitting on nest (boating lake)
  • 3 juvenlie birds all initially seen in or around the nest, then later seen fishing
  • pair of Mute Swans still with all 8 cuygnets on the boating lake, additional pair (with none) on the fish pond, Canada Geese, 1 hybrid Greylag Goose, 1 male Egyptian Goose
  • Black Headed Gull,
  • Mallard, Tufted Duck, Coot, Moorhen,
  • Feral pigeon, Woodpigeon, 2 Stock Dove grazing on melbourne field with Woodpigeons, 2 Collared Dove
  • 14 Swift low over the boating lake
  • 6 Great Spotted Woodpeckers: 4 active & calling along the Cranbrook Cut. 2 more feeding a "singing tree" in the Plantation, at least 2 chicks! Elsewhere many singletons. Come to Valentines Park for Great Spotted Woodpeckers! also 2 Green Woodpeckers
  • Grey Wagtail Seen in the first outflow from the Boating Lake (Cranbrook Rd end), then flew towards the contractors compound.
  • Wren (many singing), Robin with 2 juvenlies, 1 Song Thrush, Blakcbirds, several Mistle Thrush,
  • 4 Blackcap in the Dell (2male, 2female)
  • Great Tit, Blue Tit, Starling, 8 House Sparrow, Magpie, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, 2 singing male Greenfinch (Mike Condon)

Wanstead Flats:

  • 3 Cormorant (yay!),
  • 6 Carrion Crow, Blackbird, Song Thrush, Robin,
  • Green Woodpecker,
  • Meadow Pipit,
  • Coot, Little Grebe, Canada Goose, Mallard,
  • c.100 frenzied Swift (over Alex), and when it was too dark for the Swift, 4 Noctule Bats (thanks TH for the ID) superb! (Nick Croft).

June 19, 2010

June 19th 2010

Fairlop Gravel Works:

  • Shelduck, 2 male Teal,
  • Grey Heron (over), Cormorant
  • c25 Lapwing, 3 Green Sandpiper, Redshank,
  • 3 Little Ringed Plover (still displaying)
  • Kestrel hovering over Painters Road
  • several singing Skylark
  • 5 Linnet
  • fledged Pied Wagtail (DEH/ABlackman)

Fairlop Waters CP:

  • Greylag Goose broods on the baoting lake
  • Shoveler - on the scrape
  • Coots - One nest near the moored boats where there is a rectangle wall withhole at the front of it.
  • Pheasants - One legging it at the back of the horse paddock being watched by foxes (vixen & her two immature clubs)
  • Kestrel - One hunting over main boating lake & golf course plus one seenover hovering between the entrance of the country park and the house opposite Fairlop station.
  • Little Owl - Both adults seen going from it's usual tree to the other two trees behind - plus one feeding from the floor which produced very good views. Also from speaking to Bob we discovered that he rescued the single Owlet which they've produced from the ground after it fell from the nestbefore the crows could get to it...Unfortunately we forgot to ask how recent that was but at least they have one Owlet currently which is good news.
  • Stock Doves - x 4 One in the Little Owl field feeding amongst woodpigeons &Three in field adjacent to the riding school
  • Swifts - Absolutely loads around the main boating lake, golf course & riding school area & stables zooming pass just over our heads.
  • House Martins - Good numbers in the air over the main boating lake, the golf course but also around the horse riding stables and paddock...Tajinder & Neil actually managed to speak with Bob the owner of the riding school who let us in around the stables where we discovered 35 potential nests - But we weren't sure if all the nest's had been used or not just under the eves of one of the properties at the back opposite the stables.
  • Swallows - One active nest with 4 chicks inside stables of which the adultgave us some cracking views and was not bothered at all by our presence atthe sides of the stable door, which Bob assured us that would be the case -plus loads flying very low around stables, horse paddock, golf course andmain boating lake. (other empty nests where birds have fledged)
  • Sand Martins - Several skimming low over the boating lake.
  • Reed Bunting - x 5 - 3 males & 2 females seen.
  • Mute Swan,Canada Geese, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Grey Heron (over), Cormorant (voer), Great Crested Grebe, Moorhen, Pied Wagtail, Carrion Crows, Magpie, Blackbird, Wrens, Robin, Feral Pigeon, Woodpigeons, Collared Dove, Green Woodpecker, Skylark, Whitethroat, Blackcap, Willow Warbler, Blue Tit, Long Tailed tit, House Sparrow, Chaffinch (AThomas)
Five Oaks Lane Scrubland:

  • 6 Yellowhammer
  • 2 Linnet
  • several Whitethroat, 3 Willow Warbler (heard), 3 Chiffchaff
  • 2 Swallow
  • Green Woodpecker
  • Sing Thrush(heard)

Roding Valley Park, north:

  • the section north of Ray Park
  • Little Egret (seen 3 times, probably the same bird though)
  • Kingfisher
  • male and female Kestrel both seen hunging
  • several Swift overhead
  • Whitethroat, Blackcap, Chiffchaff
  • Reed Warbler, Sedge Warbler
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker
  • Jay
  • Bullfinch
  • also: Mallard, Moorhen, Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon, Collared Dove, 2 Song Thrush, 2 Mistle Thrush, Blackbirds, Wren (heard), Dunnock, Carrion Crows, Magpie, Blue Tit, House Sparrow, Starling, Greenfinch, Goldfinch (heard) (AThomas)

Wanstead Park:

  • House Martins feeding over Heronry Pond (JLe)

Pics - June 2010

Red Kite over Woodford, 17th June
(Howard Anderson)

Story - Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

I have recently observed a strange friendship between the male Egyptian Goose and the Muscovy Duck-
I keep seeing them sunbathing and swimming side by side!
(Gillian Ware)

June 18, 2010

June 18th 2010

Fairlop, Aldborough Riding School:
  • Little Owl on a telegraph pole on Painters Road, near the nest site. (DEH)

Fairlop Waters CP:

  • quick visit at 8.30pm - you have GOT to go at this time!!! c500 Swift in feeding frenzy, some flying literally inches from my face!
  • Kestrel hovering over the entrance
  • singing Reed Warbler on the boating lake bank
  • Fledged Pied Wagtail
  • 3 Stock Dove
  • 4 Chiffchaff singing
  • Green Woodpecker
  • 2 singing male Reed Bunting (DEH)

Roding Valley Park, central:

  • 3 Song Thrush
  • 2 Whitethroat, Chiffchaff, Blackcap
  • 12+ Swift
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker
  • Lesser Black Backed Gull (AHobson)

Roding Valley Park, south:

  • 1 Whitethroat
  • 1 Reed Warbler
  • 1 Little Egret
  • 1 Jay
  • 1 Greenfinch
  • Pair of swan and 6 cygnets
  • Lots of tits, crows, woodpigeon (PGordon)

South Park:

  • Great Crested Grebe on nest
  • Mistle Thrush
  • Green Woodpecker (TLachhar)

Wanstead Park:

  • Reed Warbler still warbling - albeit not so vociferously - by Shoulder of Mutton Pond. He has extended his range from the reed bed to the whole eastern end of the lake, and often sings from trees.
  • (no sign of the Whistling Duck) (pFerris)

Woodford Green, St. Judes Court:

  • Lesser Black Backed Gull low ovr the green (AHobson)

Story - Flown the nest!

...well it's happened at last! When I got to the Grey Heron's nest site in Valentines Park today, what did I see but an EMPTY NEST!
All three chicks have now fledged- though I'm sure they'll keep coming back... One chick was on his log, two were bustling about/dozing in the undergrowth and the parent bird was in the same area as yesterday- round on the North/East side of the pond. It was difficult to see the ones in the undergrowth well but they seemed to remain roughly in the same places for about three hours- no big dramas whileI was there thank goodness. It was all quite peaceful for a change.
It was amusing to see one of the chicks practicing being a Drum Major with his baton! He kept picking the stick up, dropping it and then picking it up again. Did he think it was a rigid eel? I am very relieved I have seen the empty nest as I have to go away for about12 days tomorrow and was feeling devastated about leaving the Herons beforeI knew they could all fly! I will still miss them and hope they'll be around when I return...

by Gillian Ware

Pics - June 2010

2 Magpies spent half an hour pecking the tail and backside of this fox until he eventually gave up and went away, Gants Hill garden, 17th June 2010 - NTwyford

Mrs. Great Crested Grebe asking her eggs to hurry up and hatch
Valentines Park, Boating Lake, 16th June 2010 (GWare)

June 17, 2010

June 17th 2010

Bush Wood, Wanstead:
  • Hobby flying west away from Bush Wood this morning at 08:00. (THarris)
  • Little Egret flew east over Blake Hall Road at 9:20am (J Lethbridge)

Fairlop, Aldborough Riding School:

  • 2 Little Owl (the parents), busily hunting in turns 7.30-8pm

Fairlop Gravel Works:

  • Pochard family has 7 ducklings (not 6 as previously thought)
  • 3 Coot broods on the north side, 1 on the south mid-hatch. (Actually, the Coot nest on the south side, has hatched against all odds. The nest is occupied by a single parent, who has left the eggs unattended day and night throughout most of the last month... I thought she had been got by a fox... but today, the 1st Cootlet had hatched, when i was there, 2 more eggs yet to hatch)
  • 5 Stock Dove
  • Little Grebe, Great Crested Grebe on the north side
  • Sparrowhawk (over), carrying prey (i couldnt see what)
  • 2 House Martin
  • Lapwings with chicks... plus a flock of 10 returned birds
  • 3 Green Sandpiper
  • 2 Little Ringed Plover
  • 2 Whitethroat, Blackcap, 2 male and 1 fledged baby Reed Warbler, 2 singing malee Sedge Warbler
  • male Reed Bunting
  • singing Skylark
  • families of fledged Pied Wagtails
  • 2 Linnet (DEH)
  • (no sign of Redshank or Shelduck)

Fairlop Waters:

  • 3 Green Sandpiper on the scrape (Alan Bell)
  • 4 Meadow Pipit, (pr, wioth 2 fledged young... near the scrape) (DEH)
  • also saw 3 Green Sandpiper, plus Lapwing, 3 Teal, Gadwall, Shoveler, Pied Wagtail, Green Woodpecker (AHobson)

Roding Valley Park, central:

  • 2 Pheasant, [female and chick],
  • Little Egret,
  • 2 Blackcaps [male and female, in different places],
  • Song Thrush,
  • Whitethroats [several],
  • Chiffchaff,
  • flock of Long-tailed Tits,
  • Pied Wagtail,
  • 2 Swift (AHobson)

Wanstead Flats:

  • Jubilee Pond: 4+ House Martin, 1 Sand Martin, 20+ Swifts (J Lethbridge)
  • Red Kite (over) - (Howard Anderson)

Story - The Grey Herons

Hi, A lot more activity among the Grey Heron family in Valentines Park- flying backwards and forwards and having one squabble after another- a typical family? It was really exhausting! Sequence of events: Three chicks by nest- (one in nest, the other two on branch). Parent sitting on island oak tree as yesterday.
One chick flies off nest, does wide circle ending up in Alder tree on main land, where he wobbled about. Suddenly (caught me out- to my annoyance with myself) the chick from the nest-branch arrived in a fury, landing beside the first chick.
After violent squawking and flapping, he flew off and returned to the nest! First chick shortly flew down to the usual logs in the water. Then he started making a racket and I rushed to see what was happening: he was chasing another grey shape onto the bank and into the undergrowth- difficult to see, but I then realized the adult bird in the oak tree had vanished so it must be him- the other two chicks still being by/in the nest. They chased each other along the back but finally disappeared into the islands' woods.

Nothing happening, I decided to walk round the island to see if I could find them. Eventually I spotted them on the islands' North/East bank. At first they seemed quite amicable but then they started MORE squawking at each other. At this point I saw the adult bird emerging beside a Foxglove in the undergrowth above them- and they then started going for him! One chick moved to a shrub above the water and after a time the other chick flew off leaving his parent and sibling. I walked back to check the nest- that's where he had flown to. But he wasn't going to stay there- down he flew to the log in the water...soon the other chick joined him and then they fished for a bit before disappearing among the trees again, chasing each other. Later, one returned to fish. All was peaceful at first, but then- making horrendous, blood curdling cries- he rushed out of the water chasing anothe rgrey shape (the other chick- the parent was still by his foxglove)! He was in such a state I actually wondered if he would have a heart attack! I followed their movements along the bank until they disappeared. Later, walking round the island again, by the bridge on the West side of theisland, what looked like a grey duck swimming caught my eye- needless to say it was one of the chicks, who proceeded to fish- the first time I have seen one there. One chick remained in nest- the same one? Who knows! Sorry this is so long, but it all happened over about five hours. Gillian

(the last pic, is from Wanstead Birder blog (JLethbridge)

June 16, 2010

Pics - Fulvous Whistling Duck

Fulvous Whistling Duck, (Dendrocygna bicolor)
(thanks to JLethbridge for ID)
very tame, presumably escaped, at Heronry Pond in Wanstead Park - 16th June 2010

(Pic by Paul Ferris)

June 16th 2010

Claybury Park:

  • Blackcap [female], Whitethroats [several],
  • Swifts [lots; v. close views of them swooping right past me],
  • at least 2 Bullfinches (heard) (AHobson)
  • 2 Stock Doves (AHobson)

Clayhall, garden:

  • recent garden sightings:
  • 5 Goldfinch, 5 Greenfinch, at least one pr Chaffinch
  • 7 Woodpigeon
  • 4 Dunnock,
  • 5 Blue tit, 5 Great tit
  • 5 Magpie, 4 Carrion crow:
  • Sparrowhawk (passing over)
  • c5 House sparrow:
  • several Lesser-black backed Gull and Black Headed Gulls flying overhead, (Charlie Coplestone)
  • Clayhall, back garden at approx 9.15 am - young Peregrine falcon (I think) sitting on fence for a few minutes, then flew up into a nearby tree where it sat for a couple more minutes before flying off. (MScott)

Fairlop Waters CP:

  • Mute Swan pair on the lagoon appear to have lost their cygnets.
  • Canada Geese everywhere, including a new brood of 5 very young goslings
  • 2 families of Greylag Geese in interesing development: the pr that had 9 (left), has donated 2 goslings to the pair that had only 1 left!
  • Mallard, c15 Tufted Ducks, male Shoveler, Moorhen, Coot, 2 Great Crested Grebe
  • Pheasant
  • Black Headed Gull, sevral Lesser Black Backed Gulls
  • 4 Lapwing on the island, 2 (with young) by the scrape
  • Wood Sandpiper and 2 Green Sandpiper (together) on the scrape.
  • 9 Stock Dove (mostly paddock, 2 over), Woodpigeon, Feral Pigeon
  • Blackbird, Dunnock, Robin, Wren, Song Thrush
  • **Hoopoe**... on the ground by the back (east) of the fishing lake, flew up into a tree, called briefly, noticed some fishermen (boys), and flew off (not distantly, but i couldnt relocate... was planning to re-look after visiting the scrape, but got side tracked by Wood Sandpiper)
  • c20 Swift, 16 House Martin (most so far), 2 Swallow
  • 2 singing Skylark
  • c10 Whitethroat, 2 Blackcap, 4 Chiffchaff, 3 Willow Warbler
  • male Reed Warbler in full song in the small 'line' of reeds between the lagoon and the sign that says 'footpath to painters road' (Reed Warblers really doing well this yr, turning up everywhere)
  • Chaffinch, Greenfinch, 2 Linnet
  • Also: Carrion Crow, Magpie, Starling, House Sparrow, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Long Tailed Tit (DEH)

Valentines Park:

  • Great Crested Grebe still on 3 eggs
  • Grey Heron chicks have all left the nest now, but remain in the vicinity
  • male Egyptian Goose has struck up an unusual friendship with a Muscovy Duck, seen sunbathing and swimming along together (GWare)

Wanstead Flats:

  • (07:30-11:00): Round pond Coot with 6 chicks still!
  • 6 Mallard (now if only the pond were ten times bigger... ),
  • 12 Lesser Black-Backed Gull mostly checking the menu at Alexandra Pond, 3 Herring Gull, 2 Common Gull, 2 Black-Headed Gull,12 Cormorant,
  • 5 Mistle Thrush, 4 Song Thrush (1 juv),
  • 14 Jackdaw,
  • 4 Greater Spotted Woopecker, 3 Green Woodpecker, oodles of Greenfinch (the correct term I think), 1 Goldfinch, Chaffinch,
  • 1 Reed Bunting, 2 Chiffchaff, c.10 Whitethroat with young,
  • 1 Stock Dove, 1 Collared Dove and very little else to warrant me getting up so early... (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park:

  • escaped (tame) Fulvous Whistling Duck, (Dendrocygna bicolor), by Heronry Pond (PFerris)

Woodford Bridge, St. Judes Court:

  • 2 Common Tern [or the same one twice, a few hours apart] [rare round here],
  • Green Woodpecker, 2 Jays, Cormorant, lots of Swifts, Lesser Black-backed Gull, plus everyday birds. (AHobson)

Forest Gate: (just outside the borough)

  • (07:00): Peregrine Falcon past my window (NickCroft).

Video - Blue Tits of South Woodford

Look who made it...

Its (presumably) the surviving chick from the South Woodford mini series!

Story - The Grey Heron Saga...

A lot of activity at the Grey Heron nest in Valentines Park today:
When I got to the site the parent bird was in the large Oak tree on the island, keeping an eye on the chicks I guess; one chick (I'm again assuming it was the first fledgling but of course I have no proof!) was fishing on the usual log; the remaining two were on the nest.
One of the chicks on the nest branch suddenly decided to fly off to a nearby Sycamore tree (another assumption: the one who flew down to the water yesterday?) where he wobbled about in an unstable manner for some time ... ...before flying back to his branch.

His sibling had in the meantime been skulking about on the bank, but he soon joined his brother/sister(?) and after an initial "squawk" they seemed quite companionable...

He then flew up into a nearby cypress tree, where he remained until returning to the undergrowth. The second chick eventually returned to the nest tree, but lurked in the ivy above the nest and his lazy sibling. The adult bird sat in the same spot in the oak tree all this time (approximately four hours).

(by Gillian Ware)

June 15, 2010

June 15th 2010

Grange Hill, Long Green:

  • male Bullfinch in the garden for 3 mins at 8am today (Ian Shaw)

Roding Valley Park, Central:

  • the section between Roding Lane North and Chigwell Road (and surraounding playing fields)
  • Grey Wagtail,
  • 3 or 4 Whitethroats (including excellent views of male displaying), Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff,
  • Jay, Song Thrush,
  • Great Spotted Woodpecker,
  • up to 4 Lesser Black Backed Gulls
  • Greenfinch (Alan Hobson)

Wanstead Flats:

  • (07:00-12:00): Wood Sandpiper (briefly touched down on Alexandra Lake twice before legging it North),
  • Hobby (West over Alexandra Lake),
  • 12 Cormorant, 9 Lesser Black-Backed Gull, Common Gull
  • 7 House Martin, c. 30 Swift,
  • numerous Starling in large groups of juv and adult, Skylark, Carrion Crow (c. 100 on both playing fields and fairground),
  • Greenfinch, Chaffinch, 3 Linnet, 2 singing Reed Bunting,
  • Wood Pigeon, Stock Dove,
  • Pied Wagtail,
  • 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 4 Green Woodpecker,
  • 5 Mistle Thrush, Blackbird, Robin, Dunnock, Wren, Meadow Pipit,
  • Magpie, Jackdaw, 3 Jay,
  • Blue Tit, Great Tit,
  • Little Grebe, Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Mallard, 6 Tufted Duck (2 on Alexandra Lake, 4 on Jubilee pond), Moorhen, Coot (6 chicks still on round pond and defying all the odds–new nests popping up on Alexandra Lake and Jubilee Pond),
  • Blackcap, 3 Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, (Nick Croft).

Wanstead Park:

  • Little Egret (over East),
  • 5 Sand Martin, c. 20 House Martin,
  • 4 Song Thrush,
  • Coots nest building all over the place–we could be knee deep in coots come the end of the summer!,
  • Great Crested Grebe, Grey Heron,
  • Ring Necked Parakeet,
  • Reed Warbler (still on Shoulder of Mutton), 5 Chiffchaff, Whitethroat, Blackcap,
  • Long Tailed Tit, Sparrowhawk,
  • 3 Great Spotted Woodpecker, 2 Green Woodpecker
  • 2 Cormorant
  • Carrion Crow, Magpie, c.30 Jackdaw, 3 Jay, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Dunnock, Wren, House Sparrow, Moorhen, (Nick Croft).

Woodford Bridge, St. Judes Court:

  • 2 Stock Doves on the green (8 pm). Only the second time I have seen them there in nearly 10 years of living here; they normally stay in Claybury. (Alan Hobson)

Story - 2nd Grey Heron chick moves out..

When I arrived at the Valentines Park Herons nest today, there were the two chicks on the nest and the third on his usual log in the water.
He seemed to enjoy another of his duck-like dips, splashing with great gusto and then shaking out his wings!

After I had been there for about a couple of hours, I was idly watching one of the chicks on the nest branch- wondering how many days it would be until he and his companion left the nest - when suddenly he completely took me unawares by flying off the branch and down to the water to join the firs tfledgling! They almost immediately disappeared in the banks undergrowth where it was difficult to see them, but after a time came out squawking angrily at eachother! However, they seemed to settle down on their separate logs,searching for food. Then I had just turned my back for a second when I saw one of them- presumably the second one- flying back onto his branch. There he sat, while the third one still lay in the nest-

this pic is a wide angle to show the positions of the three birds.
While I was there I did not see either of the adults. Gillian Ware (13th June 2010)

Story - Blue Tits of South Woodford

Last month, we were following the Blue Tit family that took up residence in a nest box in Mr. Peter Gordons garden, fit with webcam etc...
To our surprise all but one of the chicks died suddenly, and the 1 remaining chick remained in the nest, being fed by 1 lone parent. It successfully fledged, and is still seen occasionally visiting the garden.
This weekend, Peter cleared out the nest box, in the hope that it will be used again next year... and discovered one of the bodies... (look away if you are squeemish)

June 14, 2010

June 14th 2010

Fairlop Gravel Works:
  • Canada Goose broods all over the place
  • Shelduck, female Teal, 6 Tufted Duck, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen
  • few Lesser Black Backed Gulls
  • flock of 12 Lapwing (first returning birds - perhaps non-breeders (all adult birds)
  • also 1 proud mother Lapwing guarding 1 chick
  • 5 Little Ringed Plover, 2 Redshank
  • 4 Stock Dove
  • Pied Wagtail, 3 singing Skylark
  • c20 Swift, 2 Swallow
Fairlop Waters CP:
  • c100 Swift, 20 Swallow, 5 Sand Martin, 1 House Martin
  • no sign of saturdays Barnacle Goose

Five Oaks Lane Scrubland:

  • Red Kite over – heading towards Fairlop
  • 4+ Whitethroats, Chiffchaff
  • 3 Swifts, Swallow
  • 2 Cuckoo (1 seen)
  • Linnet, Goldfinch
  • Great spotted woodpecker
  • Wren, Robin, Song Thrush (heard)
  • Pheasant
  • Blue tit (with young)
  • Collared doves, magpies and carrion crows (TLachhar/NVincent)

Roding Valley Park, north:

  • Bullfinch (heard) (RWoodward)

Valentines Park:

  • Great Crested Grebe still sitting on nest
  • Egyptian Goose (male) on the Fish Pond
  • 2 Grey Heron chicks have now left the nest, although are still in the vicinity (3rd still on the nest) (GWare)

June 13, 2010

Story - A Pad of His Own

Today when I visited the Herons in Valentines Park, the two resident chicks were respectively in the nest and on the branch- no sign of any adults and no sign of the fledged chick on his usual log or bank.
However, I walked round the pond checking out the island for him and finally spotted a grey shape in the shore's undergrowth, east of the nest. He gradually emerged as he searched for food in the water. After some time he started to move along the shore- rather clumsily nearly falling into the water at one point when he was flying to a new perch! In fact he did have another of his "dips" too, making a big splash. I then realized he was heading for a Coots nest. The Coot had been on and off it, and its chicks were swimming around, but it did not look happy seeing the Heron's approach!
The cheeky Heron chick was not intimidated,and after a few more jump/flights plonked himself on the nest, his own nest at last!
Here he was happily making himself at home when I left... (Gillian Ware)