Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Vismig Tues Oct 12th 2010 - Hutton Roof, Cumbria & Strange Redwing Call.

Tuesday October 12th 2010 - Hutton Roof, Cumbria.
Wind: NE 5-8mph
Early strong frost, and then blue skies, with again haze to West.

Redwings again all over the place, not sure which direction to take, also seen to arrive and cascade onto Hutton Roof. In the main when they did decide they tended to go South East, with just a few to the South West. There had obviously been a fall of Dunnock during the night with lots calling from the bushes etc.

Redwing: 640 (24 larger parties and lots of small groups) all directions but the bulk to a South East
Chaffinch: 253 (30W all others E) best parties: 12,10,10,7,7.
Alba Wagtail: 9 (mainly singles)
Meadow Pipit: 78 all East to South East (best parties: 15,6)
Redpoll: 2S
Starling: 600 at least from roost 0730hrs and then steady small squadrons going East up to close.
Mistle Thrush: 22 all East (2,3,17)
Siskin: 4 (2,2)
Greenfinch: 3: (1SW and 2SE)
Goldfinch: 10 (best party 6)
Woodpigeon: 6 (5,1 all SW)
Great Spotted Woodpecker: 1E
Yellowhammer: 1


Yesterday whilst crossing over Hutton Roof from the Trig Point and coming down to the corner before entering “Lancelot Storth” Where the boundary walls meet up with another wall (and close to where the Cuckoo) is regularly seen. Well if you follow the wall down from the corner (trig side) and then in a Dalton direction you came across what I think may have been a very large “flattened type” of Yew Tree and I looked across, with my attention being took upon this rather weak, quiet softish single call not unlike “kwa” and when I looked across to the Yew Tree and several nearby shrub type trees, there was lots of Redwings, tusselling to get in this tree, whilst at the same time there where others leaving the tree and going into nearby trees. All this tusselling and josselling was going on for at least 15/20 minutes with this regular intermittent “kwa” calls which was coming from the activity tree and also all over the nearby trees in a 50 yard radious which all seemed to have tucked away small “Redwing” parties, which also in turn were moving off and giving this unusual contact call. In total I counted over 370 birds coming out of this tree and nearby trees.

I cant remember ever having heard this soft “kwa” call before coming from Redwing, it certainly is not a contact call we would generally hear in flight but some sort of contact call to announce “lift off after roost”, It was as though, they had possibly spent the day or most of the day at this daytime roost site and it was now time to move on and so they made this special sort of “contact” call to one another to say it was time to “lift off” and move on. Just the odd bird made theirr usual “Tseerp call” whilst most offered the “kwa” call.

I would welcome any information from others if they have ever heard it or seen this sort of activity, especially at 1530hours (mid afternoon)…