An early start this morning found me on the Ridge path, heading south towards Bush Wood and Winding Hill. All the usual suspects showed, with early highlights being a cormorant heading up the Ash Valley and common whitethroats and yellowhammers calling from the hedgerows. However, whilst observing a large party of long tailed tits I was drawn to a small warbler, which at first I presumed to be a chiffchaff or willow warbler. After finding it in my binoculars it became immediately apparent that it was a wood warbler, a much less common species and one that is probably migrating south each day. It moved continually, not permitting any worthwhile photos. The yellow eye stripe (supercillium) was diagnostic and its wings showed hints of a lime green/yellow. A first for me in the area and 1st new species since mid July.
Upon arriving at Bush Wood 2 fox cubs showed on the path, startling 4 jays from the oak tree. A quick snap shot was taken before they dived into the hedge. Shortly after a hobby flew low over the bean field, calling as it headed south. Only my 3rd record of this superb bird of prey this year and another sign of migration.
Over the golf course a common buzzard was heard "mewing" and a great black backed gull glided north west. Most noticeable was the lack of any swifts, swallows or martins.
2 migrant hawkers were observed along with 25+ meadow browns, 2 peacocks, 5 large whites 15+ small whites, 1 comma, 1 red admiral, 1 small skipper and 2 common blues. A most successful wander.
Today's photos show the splendidly inquisitive fox cubs along with a female yellowhammer. 2 views of a common blue, showing both the underwings and fore wings and finally a chance snap of a green woodpecker flying past on the golf course. Looks rather odd with its wings folded completely back. This flight pattern gives the bird its tell tale dipping flight.