Saturday, 24 March 2012

First Chiffchaff and Mipits regular.

0645hrs: Thornleigh - Burton In Kendal. Had my first calling Chiffchaff of the year. There was a bird calling from this same spot a day later last year (eg: 25th March 2011), probably the same bird.

Been up on Hutton Roof via Dalton and the Meadow Pipits are going North with up 40 birds per hour. Still showing mainly in singles and pairs with very few larger parties. This should change in the next day or two with larger parties growing.

Also had: one pair of Linnet to North, and a single bird showing activity close to Trig. I think this may be one of the breeding birds from last year. A couple of albas went through, also some regular Redpoll activity with up to 6 birds during the hour all going North. Also one Skylark to the West.

I would think the Mipits are on target to probably reach their peak by about the 26th to 28th March as is usually the case, and by then would expect to get around the 150 birds per hour at least.

These Pipits have their dates worked out well eg: usual peak dates in Spring = 26th to 28th March approx.
peak dates on return in Autumn - 26th to 28th September approx.

There is also some Mistle Thrush activity on Dalton.

Last year I had four Swallows going over the Trig Point on 25th March 2011, and two of them spent over one hour "hawking" out around the Trig Point area. I wonder if the same will happen this year. Certainly the weather and other conditions are absolutely "perfect".

Stonechats are thin or going undetected, just had the one this year and that was only seen on one morning only, and none since.

Sadly no Great Grey Shrike this year, or at least up to press.