Saturday 31 October 2009

The Witching Hour!

At last, a nice calm day with a light SSE'ly wind. Jack trapped another Long-eared Owl before breakfast. I was on South census while Jack had the North. I thought it might have gone with the calming of the weather but the Woodlark was still faithful to Neder Taft, where a Barred Warbler also popped up! The recent thrush theme continued with over 1,100 in the south, but fewer in the north and there was a noticeable clearout, of Blackbirds in particular, at around 4pm with the traps suddenly devoid! Woodcocks too were evident and I flushed a total of 72 on my census. There was another Barred Warbler at Haa and a Common Rosefinch at Lower Leogh, a Yellowhammer at Schoolton and Lesser Whitethroat at Shirva - a very brown bird with a much-reduced grey hood but still with a distinct eye mask, of which we get quite a few each autumn, and what we used to call 'blythii' but perhaps may be 'halimodendri'? Meanwhile Jack finally caught up with the Shorelark at Dronger!

Hollie took our three wee ones and Lowri out on Storm, with Bijoux dutifully tagging along. All the kids enjoyed their little ride, although the ponies were both in 'a funny mood' and Fyntan got a shock when Storm's fast trot suddenly turned into a couple of strides of canter and a wee buck before he was halted. Fyn did superbly well to stay onboard and remain 'fairly' calm!
Kids all went out 'trick or treating' as soon as it got dark, followed with everyone meeting at Auld Haa for some ghoulish food and a few pints of Witches Brew!

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