Wednesday 19th October

There's still not very much to report, hence the long delay since my previous entry. There has been a noticeable change in the weather over the last couple of weeks with the Indian summer giving way to more seasonal weather again. There have been the first signs of autumn and winter in amongst the bird life on the Meadow as well: I've seen a few SNIPE around the flood strip and there were some teal hanging out in the vicinity though there's not really enough water to keep them entertained properly. Lapwing and black-headed gulls continue to loiter by the pool and today for the first time there were about 50 GOLDEN PLOVER wheeling around before settling near Stint Corner. It's great to have this lovely species back again on the Meadow and I always associate the autumn period with their wonderful overhead wheeling flocks as well as searching through the grounded birds for rarer American cousins. Plenty of meadow pipits, linnets and pied wagtails about and there has been a steady overhead light passage of skylarks over the last couple of weeks. Along the river and the Castle Mill Stream the kingfisher has been seen regularly again.

A male common darter enjoying the sunshine

I've only visited Burgess Field once in the last few weeks but was rewarded with a couple of SISKIN flying over and it looks like it might be a good season for this delightful finch this time round. Today in the hedge along the Trap Ground allotments my patient searching was rewarded with a treecreeper, actually my first of the year on the patch though they have been seen by others. This small bit of hedge is often surprisingly productive when looking for birds.

When all the other birds have deserted the flood puddle,
black-headed gulls still keep the faith

A bit of decent rain should expand the pool enough to attract back some ducks and perhaps even some waders as well as the wonderful winter gull roost. It's all a matter of waiting patiently.

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