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Thursday, 15 November 2012

Blackbirds falling out of the sky over St Mary's!

Part of the flock of 60+Blackbirds flying high in off the sea over Porth Hellick!

  With a SE breeze overnight, Graham and I thought it would be a good idea to have an early start. While he was making the coffee, I opened the french windows and the first bird I hear is a fly over Brambling. Not a bad start. I venture outside and am immediately aware that there are a lot of Blackbirds in. We watched 15 leave my garden  followed by another 35, all heading out ESE! Other birds were also flying overhead in a ESE direction with small flocks of winter thrushes and Chaffinches, 2 more Brambling, 1 Skylark, and an impressive line of over 2000 Starling. As the Starlings were all going in the opposite direction to everything else, it was thought that they were possibly coming from a nearby roost. 60+Fieldfare was the biggest flock to fly over. At the same time, Jim called to say he had just trapped a Jack Snipe at Porth Hellick.

Over 45 Blackbird flew out of me garden first thing this morning!

  It was hard to leave the garden, but we arrived at Porth Hellick at 07.30 and it was evident that Blackbirds were falling out of the sky. However, the first thing we heard, besides the thrushes overhead, was a Siberian Chiffchaff, or was it? We were both confused as it gave it's short Dunnock type call, followed by a few collybita type Chiffchaff calls. We soon lost interest in the chiffchaff as more and more Blackbirds were moving from a SWW direction heading ENE. It was a constant flow of small groups of 4-7 birds with as many as 15-25 on a two occasions moving through at different levels. Some were like dots in the sky, while others were zooming over our heads. We wanted to move on somewhere else, but we were so close to getting 200 and stayed a few minutes extra. This payed off as we observed a large flock of over 40 birds come high in off the sea and slowly descend, immediately followed by over 20 more birds with smaller numbers behind them. A loose flock of nearly 100 Blackbirds over Porth Hellick! By 09.50, we had just observed a total of 420 Blackbirds!! They were still moving, but I had to get to work. Also moving with the Blackbirds were at least 150 each of Fieldfare and Redwing, 20 Chaffinch, 1 redpoll sp, 1 Skylark, 1 Lapwing, 1 Woodcock, and 7 Snipe. The 6 Greenland White-fronted Geese were still present on the pool
  Higgo called to say that he was watching the 3 Ring-necked Duck and 6 Whooper Swan on Tresco Great Pool. My reply was that we have just had 420 Blackbird over Porth Hellick! There was a silence and then 'I've had a Brambling' oh that's good.

The Blackbirds were moving over at different levels.

Also single Skylark and Lapwing flew through

  Before I went to work, we had a brief look at the Garrison campsite and observed a flock of 12 followed by 8 Blackbird drop out of the sky, with other birds already grounded. 3 Crossbill showed very well and there were 2 Chiffchaff in the area. While driving around, I saw 1-5 Blackbirds overhead, including a flock of 19 over Rose Hill. Graham went to Lower Moors and got the singing male Siberian Chiffchaff and very few Chiffchaff. By mid-day, and only a few Blackbirds were high overhead and it was now hard to say whether these birds were coming in or arrived earlier on. Late afternoon and there were 6 Crossbill and 2 Siskin feeding in the pines at the stables. I kicked over 100 Blackbird at Green Farm with smaller numbers elsewhere.

1 male and 2 female Crossbill were at the campsite

There seemed to be no increase in Goldcrests

Gomez are an English indie rock band from Southport, comprising Ian Ball (vocals, guitar), Paul "Blackie" Blackburn (bass), Tom Gray (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Ben Ottewell (vocals, guitars) and Olly Peacock (drums, synths, computers). The band is distinguished in having three singers and four songwriters, employing traditional and electronic instruments. Their sound is versatile and evades typical music genres falling into blues, indie, alternative, rock, folk, psychedelic and experimental. In 2005, Gomez signed a new deal with Dave Matthews' (of the Dave Matthews Band) ATO Records and later In 2008, they opened up several of his shows. This was followed in June 2009, opening for Pearl Jam on the European leg of the Backspacer Tour

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