Thursday, 22 March 2012

Watford (14th March)

  • cloud 3/3 shade 1/3
  • wind 0/3
  • temp. 0-1/3


Another usual morning walk through Cassiobury Park between 8:00 and 8:25am.  1 Song Thrush, 1 Nuthatch and 1 calling Redpoll species were the first birds of the day, closely followed by 2 calling Great Spotted Wooodpeckers and 1 Goldcrest.  As there were fewer than usual people in the park and it seemed relatively still, I decided to check out the Little Owl spot in the park which Ian pointed out to me last week (thanks Ian) and was very glad to find the resident adult LITTLE OWL perched nervously and flying between the two old oak trees at the west end of the Park near the nature reserve perhaps agitated by my presence.  I didn't want to disturb it too much so I moved on, as I was, 3 Lesser Redpoll flew over in a northerly direction.  Other birds of note during my visit included 2 Nuthatch (both only heard), 2 Mistle Thrushes on the football  fields, calling Herring Gulls (in the Whippendell direction), 30+ Black-headed Gulls, 1 calling Ring-necked Parakeet and a Pheasant gave a harsh "squak" from the cress beds in the nature reserve. (not bad for a 25min. visit)


I had a few hours to spare after school before I had to head of to an after school art class and spent the time along the River Colne and walked to the farmland neighbouring Bushey Hall School.  The highlights along the river included 1 Grey Wagtail and a Kingfisher perched over the stream (surprisingly it wasn't perched on a shopping trolly in the river but in fact on the end of a branch, a slight hint of sarcasm in the last sentence).


It's only a very small nature reserve just east of the A4008 but is a nice quiet spot near the Bushey Hall Golf Course.  Not a great deal of note except 2 calling Green Woodpeckers, a total of 5 Jays and a Great Spotted Woodpecker feeding on the fairway of the Golf Course.


This held some ideal habitat for Little Owls (a new focus for a survey I am conducting) and within seconds of lifting my bins, an adult LITTLE OWL came into view, perched on one of the numerous old trees, many with suitable nest holes surrounding some excellent hunting grounds.  Glad with my new find, I moved on and on my return encountered a further 1 Ring-necked Parakeet, 2 Song Thrushes, 2 Skylarks and a calling Pheasant.

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