Eakring Bird news
April 2009
Featuring news and sightings from Eakring
April 1st
A pair of Swallows arrived back on territory this afternoon, the earliest a breeding pair have ever arrived back here, with males usually returning several days in advance. New Chiffchaffs today included singles at Eakring Flash and Eakring Meadows, with another at the Oil Bore Holes site in Eakring village. A Yellow Wagtail at Eakring Field Farm was the earliest ever here by a day and a White Wagtail was at Penny Pasture Common briefly, with 19 Fieldfare there.
April 2nd
Quiet today, with only limited amounts of visible migration which included 58 Fieldfare north and 11 Meadow Pipit north. Other migrants included a Sand Martin north-east, single Siskin north and four Starling north-east. Five new Chiffchaff were in the area this morning and four Redwing remained at Penny Pasture Common, with a single Common Snipe still present. A drake Goosander flew south over Eakring Flash and two Shelduck were in fields at Church Hill.
April 4th
Surprisingly quiet today with little of note in what were promising conditions early on. 172 Fieldfare were in the Penny Pasture Common area, with an additional ten through north-west. Two Sand Martin also went north-west, with 11 Golden Plover high north-east.
April 5th
Slightly better visible migration this morning, but generally only a trickle of migrants through, with only Meadow Pipits producing double figures with a count of 45.

The first Willow Warblers of the year were at Eakring Flash and Red Hill, with a Blackcap at Oil Bore Holes also new today. Chifchaffs continue to arrive steadily, with new birds at High Trees (Eakring village) and Eakring Flash. A single Swallow was in territory at Oil Bore Holes and just one Sand Martin through.

A female Wheatear was at Tug Bridge Farm and four Shelduck were getting in fields around there. Other birds included a 2cy Common Gull at Eakring Flash briefly and a minimum of ten Common Buzzards were around the area late morning.

April 9th
Small numbers of warblers continue to arrive, with new birds today including three Chiffchaff, four Blackcap and a single Willow Warbler. A male Wheatear was at Penny Pasture Common, before relocating to fields at Park Farm. Very few migrants through today, with eight Swallow north, seven Goldfinch north-west and 12 Fieldfare north, but a rare record of a Corn Bunting north over Eakring Flash, was both extremely welcome and continues to prove April as the best month for Corn Bunting records. Four Teal were at Penny Pasture Common still four Shelduck in the area.
April 11th
Extremely quiet this morning on the visible migration front, with very few birds recorded moving through. The heavily overcast weather, coupled with occasional light rain, was however, extremely promising and eventually helped produce a male Redstart and a Yellow Wagtail at Penny Pasture Common. The Redstart was the 50th recorded at Eakring since 1998, which is probably quite a record for a Nottinghamshire site and almost equalled the area's earliest arrival of April 10th 2008.
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Other birds in the area today included the first House Martin of the year at Tug Bridge Farm and a Common Snipe at Penny Pasture Common. Three Brambling went high north with six Fieldfare and the only other moving birds were five Linnet, two Meadow Pipit and a Swallow. A Redwing was at Kersall and there was just a handful of new warblers at various sites today. Eight Common Buzzards were overhead and the only gulls noted were single Herring Gulls north and north-east, two Lesser Black-backed Gulls east and a Black-headed Gull at Eakring Flash in the afternoon.
April 12th
Relatively quiet again this morning, although there was a slight increase in visible migration with totals of 16 Swallow and 18 Linnet north-west. A male Wheatear was at Eakring Flash briefly.
April 16th
Heavily overcast and misty conditions with a north-easterly breeze, saw a Common Tern at Eakring Flash from at least 06:30h and remaining until it was joined by another at 08:40h, when both flew off high to the north.

Small numbers of Swallow, Linnet, Meadow Pipit and Goldfinch all trickled through north throughout much of the day and there were a few new Blackcap and Willow Warbler in at several sites this morning.

During a second visit in the afternoon, six Whimbrel flew north over Red Hill at 14:35h. Two drake Pochard landed briefly on Eakring Flash before also heading north late afternoon and at least one Shelduck was again in the area.

April 18th
A mid-late morning visit produced the first Sedge Warbler (Eakring Flash) and Grasshopper Warbler (Penny Pasture Common) of the year. The 18th being a relatively early arrival date for both species here. There was a continuation of the steady trickle of Swallow, Goldfinch and Linnet today, which has been evident on the last few visits. Other birds moving through included another six Whimbrel north-east at 10:40h, single Common Gull, Black-headed Gull and four Lesser Black-backed Gull all north-east. A Common Buzzard also went straight through north-east with a Sparrowhawk north (third this April so far)
April 20th
Rather quiet this morning, but an arrival of four Whitethroats across the area and a new Sedge Warbler at Eakring Flash. The male Grasshopper Warbler was again at Penny Pasture Common. Very little signs of visible migration in the clear, sunny skies but the meagre totals did include three Yellow Wagtail north.
April 21st
An increase in visible migration this morning, once the early morning fog had lifted. Although counts were typically small for a Spring morning, there was an increase in the range of species noted going through. Newly arrived warblers included another four Whitethroat, the first Lesser Whitethroat at Eakring Meadows, two Blackcap and single Willow Warbler.

Another Sparrowhawk flew north, gaining height as soon as the fog cleared, followed at 09:30h by a Red Kite (12th Eakring record) which eventually driftted off north-east. Two Oystercatcher flew south-east over Eakring Flash late morning.

April 22nd
A second Red Kite in the area today, seen leaving it's overnight roost in Lound Wood at 08:00h, before moving off north. This seemed as though it would be the morning's obvious highlight, until a raptor picked up low over Eakring village at 10:15h, turned out to be a female Hen Harrier, the second within a few weeks. It was mobbed by corvids and was gaining height when lost from view.

Relatively quiet around the rest of the area this morning, with the male Grasshopper Warbler was still at Penny Pasture Common and three Common Snipe there today. Visible migration continued to produce low counts of most of the expected species, but a flock of 13 Siskin north-west was notable for Eakring in April.

April 23rd
More raptors again this morning, with yesterday's female Hen Harrier hunting fields in the Eakring Flash area early morning. This was followed at 08:25h by a female Marsh Harrier low west over Eakring Flash, then seen later over Penny Pasture Common at 08:50h, before it drifted low south over Eakring Field Farm. This is the first here since 2004, during which time there have actually been more Hen Harriers here than Marsh Harriers.

Otherwise, there was virtually no sign of migration at all this morning, but of note was a Tree Pipit north-west at 07:10h and four Yellow Wagtail north-west. An extremely elusive Little Grebe at Eakring Flash, potentially represented another good year tick for the area.

April 24th
Incredibly quiet this morning, but not unheard of for Spring. Just a handful of migrants went north and a couple of warblers were new. One Whitethroat which arrive on April 20th, was sadly hit by a car and killed.
April 25th
Still quiet again this morning, with very few migrants through. A male Wheatear was at Tug Bridge Farm and two Lesser Whitethroat arrived today, with a few Whitethroat and a male Grasshopper Warbler still at Penny Pasture Common. Two Little Grebe remain at Eakring Flash.
April 26th
Although the amount of visible migration was extremely low again this morning, with only four Sand Martin, five Swallow and a Goldfinch moving through, there was little to indicate that an arrival of Wheatears was likely. Five (three females and two males) were in fields at Park Farm, just over the fence from Penny Pasture Common and three (two males and a female) turned up in the large pasture at Tug Bridge Farm. Interestingly, the Tug Bridge Farm birds arrived after checking the pasture an hour before at 09:00h.

A few Whitethroat also arrived today, a Lesser Whitethroat was at Eakring Flash and two male Grasshopper Warbler were singing at Penny Pasture Common. Barn Owls were also at one site in the area this morning, seen for the first time this year and at least eight Common Buzzards were in the area.

April 27th
Generally very quiet again this morning. Two new Wheatear included a female at Park Farm and a male at Tug Bridge Farm, but there were no sign of any of yesterday's birds. The first Turtle Dove of the year flew south-east over Eakring Flash, 11 Sand Martin went either south or south-east and a total of 11 Swallow through this morning.
April 28th
The male Wheatear was still at Tug Bridge Farm today and now a pair of Grasshopper Warbler at nearby Penny Pasture Common. Small numbers of hirundines going through this morning, but slightly more this afternoon after a very heavy shower. 16 Sand Martin went north and north-west (including two groups of seven) and four House Martin went north.
April 29th
Three new Wheatears arrived this morning, with the male again at Tug Bridge Farm for it's third day and joined by two other males, whilst a female was in fields at Park Farm. Very little else seemed to arrive overnight, but there was a second Sedge Warbler singing at Eakring Flash and a new Lesser Whitethroat at Penny Pasture Common.
April 30th
A new male Grasshopper Warbler was found in an old area of set-aside near Hare Hill Wood this morning, plus the male was still on Penny Pasture Common. The male Wheatear was again at Tug Bridge Farm.
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