My Christmas Bird Count

In my very active years I always went birdwatching on Christmas Eve and if I could on Christmas Day as well. It’s been a tradition just like birding on the first day of the year.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/30f/40695063/files/2014/12/img_5596.jpgI only had chance to walk out today to the nearby local nature reserve, the Blue Lagoon. It was cloudy and temperature just over zero celsius. For the first time I mapped my trekking with Trails app for iOS. I wanted to try how drastically the battery is draining during use. It definitely won’t allow all day recordings without extra battery pack.

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I saw and counted the anyway frequently seen birds, but a few of them were more abundant than on any previous visits. Eurasian Blackbird were the most abundant among songbirds. It was a pleasure to watch them after having days without recording any. Not in mind blowing numbers, but Eurasian Bullfinch provided a couple of perfect views.

All in all, I enjoyed walking even if I struggled with my bad knee. It was my contribution to the popular Christmas Bird Count. I hope I still have time to finish this year with some more birding.

Recorded birds:

Mute Swan (Cygnus olor) 1
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) 4
Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) 2
Red Kite (Milvus milvus) 1
Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) 2
Eurasian Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus) 5
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) 18
Herring Gull (European) (Larus argentatus) 8
Lesser Black-backed Gull (Larus fuscus) 29
Stock Dove (Columba oenas) 10
Common Wood-Pigeon (Columba palumbus) 19
Eurasian Collared-Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) 1
Great Spotted Woodpecker (Dendrocopos major) 2
Eurasian Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis) 3
Eurasian Magpie (Eurasian) (Pica pica) 26
Eurasian Jackdaw (Corvus monedula) 11
Rook (Corvus frugilegus) 9
Carrion Crow (Corvus corone) 16
Coal Tit (British) (Periparus ater britannicus/hibernicus) 1
Great Tit (Parus major) 4
Eurasian Blue Tit (Cyanistes caeruleus) 17
Long-tailed Tit (Aegithalos caudatus) 24
Eurasian Wren (Eurasian) (Troglodytes troglodytes) 16
European Robin (Erithacus rubecula) 23
Eurasian Blackbird (Turdus merula) 49
Fieldfare (Turdus pilaris) 1
Redwing (Eurasian) (Turdus iliacus iliacus) 2
Song Thrush (Turdus philomelos) 4
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) 14
Dunnock (Prunella modularis) 15
Gray Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) 1
White Wagtail (British) (Motacilla alba yarrellii) 2
Common Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs) 12
Eurasian Bullfinch (Eurasian) (Pyrrhula pyrrhula) 16
European Greenfinch (Chloris chloris) 8
Eurasian Siskin (Spinus spinus) 2
European Goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) 6

A short note at the end: i have never seen as many Grey Squirrels in the Blue Lagoon NR as today. They are obviously great competitors to wintering thrushes. Apparently they have killed most of the winter berries what is in short supply by now. I wonder if the day is coming when authorities start controlling the population growth of this invasive mammal species. The cute factor cannot be the reason to deter it.

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One thought on “My Christmas Bird Count

  1. Tis mating season for the Greys too at this time of year, I believe. Maybe, they knew the cold snap was incoming. If there were Reds within a few miles of said reserve, then culling should be a no-brainer but alas, I suspect the Red Squirrels are non-existent, so therefore no incentive to do what I believe is the right thing.

    Good blog and I wish you a Happy New Year.

    Best Wishes

    Tony William Powell

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