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Log for 2005
8 Jan 2005:
- Pair of Mallard seen in Main Pond after dark (18:45).
21 Jan 2005:
- Our image of swifts
in flight is part of the BBC 'Springwatch'
promotion in association with
the Woodland Trust and
it's Phenology site
dedicated to recording natures events.
We have added another Swift image - you can view all
the flycatcher images by clicking the
thumbnail image at the right.
The Rodents Page has a new
Image of the Day
is a new section where we will be posting images we
have recently taken or from our 40 year
old archive of slides.
First Snowdrop flower spotted - isolated plant in rough
Pair of Mallard duck seen in the Duck Shaped Pond.
22 Jan 2005:
- First Primrose Flower found in rough grass - pretty
bedraggled but multiple flowers on one plant.
24 Jan 2005:
- Kestrel spent a couple of minutes on top of
concrete pole in strong wind. They hover in a
breeze but perch to hunt when calm or strong winds For
once not seen off by Jackdaws but
went off to a distant pole.
28 Jan 2005:
- 4 moorhen on the main pond chasing & fighting.
Subsequently 1 pair established dominance over the main
and others skulk in the 'round' pond - seldom seen but
8 Feb 2005:
- 10 mallard (mixed sexes) on main pond at 07:55. 2
swam off behind the island and the other eight (4 each
Ducks and Drakes) is scheduled as 'Image of the Day'
for 24 Feb 2005
20 Feb 2005:
- A pair of mallard now
regularly seen morning and evening on the main pond and
signs of others
elsewhere. Not seeing the female pheasants in the night
photos now (only the male) - perhaps they
are on nests somewhere.
Incredible numbers of Great Tits and Blue tits visiting
the feeders and inspecting the nest boxes.
A new page of Pheasants & Partridges has been added
- click the thumbnail at the right
21 Feb 2005:
- First sighting of Teal ducks - a pair at 21:40 by
torchlight in the main pond. Didn't particularly react to
but not possible to photograph.
22 Feb 2005:
- First ever sighting here of
a Polecat (in Winter Coat).
- For a larger image and description click the thumbnail
at the right.
11 Mar 2005:
- Spring has leapt into action in the last week as a
period of snow and ice has ended
First sightings this year of a Heron presumably looking
for frogs (even if we haven't spotted any yet).
First sighting this year of a Sparrowhawk.
First sighting this spring of Fieldfares who have been
absent since mopping up the last years orchard windfalls.
First ever 'hearing' of a Woodcock 05:30 on 7 Mar. Call
is a 1 to 1.5 second churring in 4 slightly rising
while out in the dark changing the night photo camera
16 Mar 2005:
- First frog of the year 'seen' in a photo taken
17 Mar 2005:
- First Frogspawn in W edge of Round pond.
First Bees seen (on Blackthorn)
18 Mar 2005:
- First Ladybird seen this season (7 Spot).
Hundreds of bees on Blackthorn flowers after several
years of very few. Mix
of honey and a few Bumble bees
- Dozens of frogs are adding to the clumps of spawn.
Pair of Long tailed tits spotted after months of
Muntjac deer startled out of long grass mid-afternoon.
- A Pair
of Carrion Crows are building a nest in a long ago
Cypresses that is now about 10m tall. Whether the chosen
branch is sturdy
enough remains to be seen.
Rooks seen mating in the next field along (but not
31 Mar 2005:
- Ladybirds mating
in the sunshine a day or two ago
- Carrion Crow nest now being lined with moss. No
pictures - we have had a cloud sitting on us for
The Polecat (22 Feb) is confirmed as a Polecat in
10 April 2005:
- 1 Swallow seen fleetingly after the first full grass
cut of the year.
12 April 2005:
- Muntac deer and very young
fawn seen on CCTV cam crossing the farm track. No new
but here is previous portrait (with an older fawn) that
you can click for the relevant page.
Several young tree sparrows seen as a family group on
the easy access peanut feeder
(accessible from the flat surface).
18 April 2005
- The Carrion crow nest has been waving in the
wind but is still there and the birds are sitting. The
bird is almost hidden on the nest, so here is an image
at the feeding site they are using.
20/21 April 2005
- The moorhen's nest was destroyed overnight most likely
by a fox seen that night. The birds are both very
25 April 2005
- A Muntjac deer seen in the
garden with a young fawn. A daylight picture of this
added to the
appropriate page - click the thumbnail to view.
The moorhen pair are now back courting and prospecting
new nest sites.
The Carrion crow nest is being incubated continuously
with the birds changing over a few times a
- 3 swallows seen (yesterday) for a few minutes perching
on the overhead wires.
25 April 2005
- Heron seen in back garden pond after months of
absence. (since then seen almost daily).
1 May 2005
- Carrion crows are feeding at least 2 chicks (see Image
of the day for 3 May 2005)
1st Cuckoo heard morning & evening (not located)
Muntac fawn seen about on its own during the day. On
one occasion walked up path toward us to about 20m
before disappearing into a hedge.
More Swallows on wires and fleeting flybys, but no
4 moorhen seen skirmishing midway between the two largest
pond (see image of day for earlier event). The pair
near the house are building numerous 'platforms' but
haven't decided yet. We may end up with nests on two
for the first time
2 May 2005
- Young magpie being fed in birch treetop
8 May 2005
- First Swifts Seen.
Click the image (from last year) for Flycatchers
15 May 2005
- Carrion crows are still feeding at least 2 chicks (was
at one time 3 but we haven't seen a third in the last
of days). Just after dawn they are fed every few
Cuckoo heard yesterday - still no sightings.
Muntjac fawn (mostly seen now in
overnight photos rather than during the day) spots are
starting to fade (see Image of the Day for
16 May 2005).
Tree sparrows appear to be incubating eggs in a Great
tit box on the main ponds island. (see
Image of the Day for 6 May 2005 for image of
The Moorhen on the main pond have constructed a well
hidden nest and are incubating. Fingers
21 May 2005
- Tree Sparrows occasionally taking nesting material into
Great tit nestbox on main pond island.
2 Carrion Crow chicks have reached jackdaw size.
Moorhen are still incubating.
First sighting of Pebble Hook-tip moth. Species List updated. For image see
the Image of the day archive for
26 May 2005
22 May 2005
- First oxeye daisy flower seen. Carrion crow chick
exercising wings on edge of nest.
25 May 2005
- Small Morsels being delivered to the moorhen nest but
it is so well concealed we can't see the chick(s).
27 May 2005
- 6 moorhen chicks being fed on the water by both
parents, 4 with one, 2 with the other.
29 May 2005
- Carrion Crow 'chicks' are near the size of the parents
are spending their time on the edge of the nest and
6 Moorhen chicks still being fed.
Young jackdaws seem to be everywhere. While digging the
vegetable plot they follow you along picking up
leather jackets from the freshly turned soil.
31 May 2005
- One Carrion crow left the nest about 0800 but was
back in it after about 2Hr.
Magpie made aerial swoop on moorhen chick on its own on
grass. Parent came rushing to see it's defense. In the
afternoon Jackdaw on a bird table with small killed
creature (counts indicate not a moorhen).
2 June 2005
- Frog spotted in IR beam photo - not seen any since
Carrion crow nest now permanently abandoned.
5 June 2005
- Regular sightings/hearings of a 'Garden
Warbler' defending territory in the corner where we used
to see/hear skylarks.
Heard some frogs near the duck shaped pond on recording
of the Garden Warbler, but couldn't
find any when we returned.
2 young carrion crows photographed themselves several
times at the distant feeding station. (May
be visiting nearer the house, but the camera is on its
way back to Canon for repair.)
12-14 June 2005
- For the first time we have two moorhen families
at once. 1 pair of Moorhen parents on main pond have 4
chicks (3 with one parent and 1 with the other) while
another pair using round and back garden ponds
have 3 (2+1). We have found the disused nest at the
round pond while the pair at the main pond have
'refurbished' their old nest as a brooding platform.
The 2 young carrion crows are regularly seen and
occasionally perch together at the top of the old
What we assume is the Muntjac deer fawn photographed
itself in immaculate condition around midnight 13-14.
17 Jun 2005
- While mowing spotted young jackdaw trapped on the
ground with leg tangled in shredded agricultural matting.
Parent frantically making alarm calls. Cut it free
without apparent ill effect.
18 July 2005
- Mallard ducks seen on Main pond after months of
22 Jul 2005
- Number of swifts (high) and swallows seen about 14:00
Adult male swallows have the tail streamers.
23 July 2005
- First sighting here of a
Small Copper Butterfly - a pair over the meadow. Click
the image for the
First sighting of Common Footman Moth on a privet
Ringlet Butterfly seen again after a few years absence.
24-25 July 2005
- 2 adult moorhen seen on overnight image on the same
night as a fox can be bad sign for a nesting pair.
seem to be taking turns on the out-of-site nest next
day so hope all is well.
2 Aug 2005
- Geese skeins flying over for first time for years.
5 Aug 2005
- Rosebay Willow Herb founf growing unexpectedly amongst
buddleias (after year of trying to grow it elsewhere).
This bit of land was polluted by agricultural chemicals
08 Aug 2005
- About 40 gliders (people in engineless planes) flew
South to North over 30mins stopping off for thermals in
groups of about 10.
Some swallows seen.
10 Aug 2005
- About 100 swallows on the wires & gutters some
feeding young on wires and on the wing. Got through 550
frames (1GB) in 45 minutes!
16 Aug 2005
- Young pheasant seen coming through gate. Possibly bred
in one of the intentionally overgrown parts of our
20 Aug 2005
- About 100 swallows again but this time over our plot
for hours - magic.
Fieldmouse seen in overnight photo kit 2 - the first
21 Aug 2005
- Several Brown Long-eared bats flying
around the front of the house just before dawn. Click
image for Bat Sounds and Images.
About 100 swallows over our plot from 0900 to 1730.
30 Aug 2005
- Several Brown Long-eared bats again around the front of
the house just before dawn - some sound recording
made (much softer than other species). Will review the
bats pages over the Winter.
18 Sep 2005
- Records of last sightings of flycatchers are useful.
Here are ours:-
Swallows 8 Sep
2005 (7 off)
Swifts 23 Aug
2005 (1 off)
(n/a - only handful of sightings all summer)
04 Nov 2005
- A Redwing identified in one of the automatic photo kit
frames - first positively identified for some years.
15 Nov 2005
- Pair of Muntjac deer seen sticking together in various
sightings. Female seen regularly after dark at secluded