Sunday, 21 August 2011

Electric attraction

I've been around quite early this morning. The alarm clock was set for 5.00 am and by 6.00 am I was already in the field. Basically I had in mind to visit Campo Carri near Banne (TS), looking for small migrants. I'd say that I was quite right with the migratory predictions. The most numerous were (surprisingly) PIED FLYCATCHERS. I counted up to 22 birds, all quite busy fly-catching of course. They were quite vocal too... I've actually never heard so much Pied Flycatcher chatting! There was a nice passage of TREE PIPITS too (the firsts of the autumn) - at leats 15 individuals counted, flying overhead and calling.

Just as I arrived in the area and heard the first Tree Pipits, I looked up and spotted 2 GREAT EGRETS migrating from the continent towards the sea.

Other birds in the area (migrants & non) included: several Nuthatches (one singing from the top of a pylon!), 3 Nightingales, 1 Green Woodpecker, Short-toed Treecreeper, 2 Spotted Flycatchers, 2 Rock Buntings, Chiffchaff (also singing), 3 Hawfinches, Great Spotted Woodpeckers (one of them on a pylon too!), 1 single Swallow, 5 imm Whinchats, Crested Tits calling from the nearby pines, Marsh Tit, Coal Tit, 1 Woodlark, 1 Sparrowhawk, 2-3 NORTHERN WHEATEARS (all 1st winter - on the open grassland), 1 male COMMON REDSTART (first winter too), 1 Cirl Bunting, 1 calling Black Woodpecker and 1 singing Black Redstart.

Interestingly several species were attracted to an electricity pylon (see pics above): Common Redstart (2x), Nuthatch delivering its song from an odd perch (2x), Northern Wheatear (1x) and a Rock Bunting...not on the pylon, but with one in the background.

And this is the other "non-electric" Wheatear:

A Roe Deer buck was also seen:

Local patch: Short-toed Treecreeper heard on a daily basis plus a Nuthatch calling today. Also 2 Robins this morning at 05.40 am - the only singing birds.