Monday, 8 October 2018

Around the Patch

I don't think i've done an update for a while, it was summer in the last update and it's most definitely autumn now!

I've had plenty of walks in the woods including the extended walk over the M621, which does take me off the patch slightly. I was trying to see if I could adjust my area for the Patchwork Challenge to include this extra walk for next year but it'll loose at least one of the regular places if I do. Maybe it could be stand alone patch?!

On this most recent walk we spotted a flock of 20+ Linnets and lots of birds in the various trees which are full of berries - Mistle Thrush, Goldfinch, Dunnock, Jay, Blue/Great Tits - it would be a good little patch!

Mistle Thrush

Back to the patch, on the same walk a Kestrel was hunting over the Pit Hill fields at the end of the woods and a Buzzard was being chased by a Crow. The woods themselves have been full of Great, Blue and Long-tailed Tits still, plus Blackbirds, Dunnocks, Robins, Woodpigeons, Magpies. The GS Woodpecker has been around too, though speaking to some of the regular dog walkers a second Woodpecker had been found dead on one of the paths, which is shame. A Sparrowhawk had been seen in gardens nearby and early in September we saw it on a few morning walks in the same patch of trees.


Great Tit


Great Spotted Woodpecker

In the parks the Thrushes disappeared for a while and have just started putting in an appearance again, with Mistle Thrush being the most common on my walk through to work. More Black-headed Gulls are back in town too, with numbers building up slowly near my house and in the centre. One morning last week a flock of 168 Pink-footed Geese flew over the park, I grabbed a photo on my phone and counted them later! The week before that 7 had flown over the house one evening.

In the garden the birds arrive in fits and starts, all the usual visitors - Sparrows, Starlings, Robin, Collared Dove, Woodpigeon, Magpie, Blue, Great and Long-tailed Tits, Blackbird, Goldfinch and more recently a pair of Coal Tits, Dunnock and a Wren. A brief visit from a Chaffinch was the first in months. We've had both Chiffchaff and Willow Warblers passing through, usually with the Tit flocks over the past few weeks.


Blue Tit


Long-tailed Tit

House Sparrow


Blue, Great & Long-tailed Tits

Coal Tit


Collared Dove

A Squirrel visits regularly as does the Hedgehog on an evening. A couple of Bats have been flying around the garden most evenings and over the past couple of weeks a Fox has been in a few times. We didn't see one at all over the summer.

Back in July our front garden was covered in Cinnabar Moth caterpillars

The warm weather brought the moths out in droves and every night after dark we watched them flying around the Buddleia by the window.

Silver Y Moth

*edit* Willow Beauty, thanks RR!

Up until last week we were still seeing Butterflies in the garden - Holly Blue, Large & Small Whites, Commas.
Large White



Holly Blue

This Shieldbug sat on the leaf of one of the pond plants in the sun for a while.

So summer's done, bring on the Autumn birds, i'm looking out for my first Redwings in the park!


  1. The colors and critters of Autumn are so special...Im looking forward to the turning leaves and the cooler air, and a more quiet time. Love all your photos!! Have a good week.

    1. They are, the leaves are gorgeous here at the moment :) Thanks and you too!

  2. How lovely! Like you we've had quite a few shield bugs in the garden and resting on the windows, loads of long tailed tits too as well as blue tits and coal tits. We had a sparrowhawk through the garden today and it may have taken one of them. I noticed that the collard doves are back too:)

    1. Oh yes we have a Sparrowhawk occasionally though it seems to leave my garden birds alone. It's lovely to watch the Tits isn't it, they're so busy all the time!

  3. A lovely and very interesting update on your patch Pam. A super set of photos too. Birds are starting to move back into our garden too :) I think the moth under the Silver y photo may be Willow Beauty? A wonderful set of sightings.

    1. Thanks and thanks on the moth, I think you're right :)

  4. I't nice looking for birds in a new area, but keep recording in your old patch if you move to another area, it's interesting over time to see what comes and goes. Do you record how many birds of one species you see, a habit I need to do when I visit the park. My new favourite place is Danfield , coming across the Siskins has renewed my interest in birds and will be visiting this area more often.
    You have such a good range of nature visiting your garden and it's so nice to see.
    Amanda xx

    1. Oh yes I love my patch, if I did the other it would be an addition, it's only a small area I probably wouldn't be able to visit too often. I often use the Birdtrack app when i'm on the patch so yes I do record how many of each, same with the garden as I do the BTO gardenwatch. I haven't explored Danefield properly in years, I saw the Siskin photos, it's good it's sparked an interest, wouldn't it be good if you could see Crossbills there! x

  5. Fall is here too. I came back from Australia to a riot of colours on the tree - reds, golds and mauves. A strong wind now will bring most of them down. I will look forward to the changing bird life in your patch as we move into winter.