Saturday, 30 January 2010

Two more species sighted on Big Garden Birdwatch

We were so lucky with the weather being dry, bright and sunny with little wind.  However, it was only just above zero.  Last year's 20 species record was not beaten, but we did sight three species not recorded in Hilly Fields for over 2 years (see below).
There were a good number of visitors and I took parties of five or six at a time around the park to see what we could find.

I was quite surprised not to find any birds at all in the South Field, Meadow or West Field (compared with two days ago) and very few around School area.  Sports were being played in the North Field so none were spotted there either.  The vast majority were to the south of the Stones Field and east of the East Field (i.e. along the Cliffview Road hedge).
This is the result:

Blackbird (2)
Blue Tit (2)
Carrion Crow (3)
Chaffinch (3)
Coal Tit (2) - First sighting
Common Gull (1)
Dunnock (1) - First sighting
Feral Pigeon (2)
Goldfinch (2)
Greenfinch (2)- First sighting
Great Tit (3)
House Sparrow (11)
Long-tailed Tit (2)
Magpie (2)
Mistle Thrush (2)
Redwing (1)
Robin (1)
Starling (1)
Woodpigeon (4)

[Correction on 01/02/2010: The Dunnock was previously omitted from this list (my error), and today I've seen one in my garden, a mere 50m from where we spotted it on Saturday.]

Long-tailed Tit

We are all indebted to Vicki Wheeler, Nature Conservation Officer, for organizing the event - especially the tea, coffee and biscuits which were certainly needed after wandering around the park in such cold weather.  With Vicki's help, our younger visitors made birdfeeders from pots, lard and birdseed to take home and hang up in their own gardens.


  1. Well, I am told that we often have dunnocks in our garden too, but I'm afraid I can't quite tell the difference between them and the sparrows. I'll have to look it up and then keep my not so eagle eye out.

  2. Dunnocks are a plain shade of grey/brown. To me, they appear more a more even shade than in this RSPB pic: