Upottery Airfield, Smeatharpe

The fog and drizzle that has been here all week persisted today making visibilty very difficult. However in slightly just less than appalling conditions this afternoon 14 Golden Plover were present on the barley field and a lone Wheatear around the dung heap. Skylarks numbered around 60 and i flushed Meadow Pipits nearly all the time so numbers probably around 50. The Blackdowns haven't seen the passage notable on the coast ( I had a superb day at Portland on Tuesday) and even when the visibilty has improved slightly, only small numbers of redwings have been present.

Similarly I visited an old haunt yesterday, Shipley Bridge and apart from 4 blackbirds and a mistle thrush, thrushes were totally absent. The lack of rowan berries may be an explanation as good fruiting years have attracted hundreds of both redwing and fieldfare in the past. The hawthorn berries are also very patchy with some trees totally devoid of berries - it suggests that the thrushes are going to have a tough winter.

Superb views of a dipper just north of Shipley Bridge provided some compensation.

Posted October 25th, 2012 at 7:25 pm in Bird News