Thursday, April 26, 2012


A morning of showers dictated the agenda this morning, a quick tour of Pilling shore before domestic arrangements called a halt.

At Lane Ends the Willow Warblers and Blackcaps seem to have arrived in decent numbers, unlike some others yet to put in an appearance; no Reed or Sedge Warblers yet. This morning I counted 3 Willow Warblers singing plus 2 Blackcaps, and managed to get a shot of a Blackcap Sylvia atricapilla in between it flitting fast and low through the bushes while singing its head off. One of the Blackcaps wasn’t as good a songster as the one pictured here, and at first I thought I was listening to a Garden Warbler Sylvia borin until I caught glimpses of that black helmet. Eventually the second one tuned up a bit too, but I don’t mind saying that at the start of each spring, separating the two Sylvias from their songs alone can be difficult. 


Garden Warbler

For anyone still unsure, there’s a comparison below, useful at the start of the season until ears get reacquainted with the differences. 

In the trees the 2 Jays seem to come and go according to no particular schedule but which is probably dictated by the amount of food put out for the assorted duck population. Still a singing Reed Bunting, 2 Little Grebe, 2 Tufted Duck, 1 Little Egret, 2 Grey Heron and the patrolling Kestrel. At Fluke Hall there was a steady passage of Swallows heading into the easterly breeze, 20 + in just 15 minutes. Along the hedgerow here 3 Willow Warblers “hooeeted” as if they had just arrived, with 2 more singing in the woodland together 2 more Blackcaps and the resident Chaffinches. Across the far side of the wood I watched a male Sparrowhawk glide through the trees, in much the same spot as last year’s pair. 


Stay tuned for the next post from a place quite unlike Pilling.


El rincón de Ceditas said...

Hermosas aves!!! el pinzón me encanta..
Un abrazo

kirstallcreatures said...

I found that comparison really useful, yet to see a Blackcap, but now I know what to listen out for.

Anonymous said...

great, clear photos, and thanks for the info

Kay L. Davies said...

I love the bird sounds, Phil, but they do sound similar, don't they? The blackcap is a cutie, but so is the warbler and so is the close-up of the chaffinch.

Rohrerbot said...

Nice clear shots. I like that you included the bird sounds. I am now ready for this stage of birding....the sounds. Great post!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I am terrible at identifying birds by sound...all wonderful birds - I love the chaffinch.

Ayuwat Jearwattanakanok said...

Blackcap is sure a really smart warbler. I don't get to see Sylvia warblers very often. In fact, I've only seen 1 species so far, the Lesser Whitethroat. Great to have these little birds around.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Beautiful Chaffinch Phil, seems to just be chilling and posing just for you. Have a Happy weekend~

Larry said...

Great post Phil. Love that Blackcap and thanks for adding the audio files. I find Xeno-Canto to be a great resource.

La sonrisa de Hiperión said...

Como siempre tus fotos estupendas.

Saludos y un abrazo.

Geoff Gradwell said...

Thanks for including the song element – really useful... I've got Blackcap but Garden Warbler.... hmmnnn!

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