Friday, 11 December 2009

Friday 11th.December 2009

To say this week has been full on would be an understatement . Monday was spent removing a Wasp nest from the loft and making good the resulting damage . Tuesday and Wednesday were spent hedgelaying up on the Greensand Ridge . Admittedly both Redwings and Fieldfares were heard and seen , the hedgelaying came first so the Winter Thrushes just got a cursory glance . Thursday was spent up on the Common , with chainsaw in hand for most of the day , wildlife was almost non existant .
By today , the list of chores needed to be done took most of the day , but I did hear and see Redwings and Fieldfares on the large Cotoneaster tree next door , that was until the neighbour further along started working in the garden , and they moved on . I did manage to get out for an hour , as the light was fading . All I could manage was a quick visit to Keston Ponds and Common . I took bread with me , but the 8 Mandarin present on the bottom pond were not interested . It was interesting though , to hear the calls of the other three resident males , as they returned from elsewhere , just as I left their roost .
The middle pond held a few Mallard type , and a pair of Canada Geese , who deigned to wake up from their snooze , to partake of the bread , unwanted by the Mandarins . Although no longer in sunlight , the Holly tree where I watched Redwings eagerly eating the ripe berries , no longer has any trace of red at all , and the same goes for many of the Hollies across the Common . Right in the middle , I did find one still with a plentiful supply of berries , but they too were being quickly devoured . The only other bird related interest found , were the feathers of a female Pheasant lying under a Scots Pine . They had been snipped off , rather than plucked , the sign of a Sparrowhawk kill . Not much fungi was found during my short visit , but I did manage to find a couple of specimens of Hygrocybe psittacina-Parrot Wax Cap , still in it's early form , being almost completely green .
Tomorrow it's back to hedgelaying , to hopefully finish the hedge near the junction of the M25 and M23 .


Ken Browne. said...

Hi Greenie.
No wonder there was no wildlife on the common with you hanging around there with a chainsaw in hand. The mind boggles.If I saw someone with a chainsaw I think I would keep my head down!
Then there is the other side of you, the "Ol Softie" who delights in taking bread to feed the wildfowl, and unwind.
Only jesting with you. Have a nice weekend Fred.

Warren Baker said...

Could have been a Goshawk that took that pheasant Greenie, pheasants are at the top end of the prey item for sparrowhawk, and then it would have to be a big female.......I wonder?

ShySongbird said...

They certainly keep you busy (and fit I hope) with all that hedgelaying! What a good job there are willing people like you who volunteer for such worthwhile work.

I have Holly at the far end of my garden which had a lot of berries on a few weeks ago, I must check if the birds have been eating them.