Saturday, 14 April 2012


This morning while we were having breakfast Simon mentioned that there was a Magpie in our neighbour's garden having a really good peck at something in her apple tree. I got the bins & was glad I'd already finished my breakfast..... the Magpie flew off leaving a gory mess where it had been eating what appears to have been an adult Blue Tit. Nasty.

Magpie breakfast
This is the second murder we've had in the garden this week. A few days ago I let Vera out first thing while I got dressed. When  I went out a few minutes later there was quite a large pool of blood on the drive. I checked Vera & she seemed fine. I couldn't see any fluff or fur on the drive so it was all a bit of a mystery. The drive had been quite wet as it had rained over night, but during the morning it gradually dried out & I could then see a few small fluffy dark feathers scattered about. I have no idea what ate what.....but the victim must have been something reasonably sized. There were no flight feathers, so the suspect presumably removed the body & dined elsewhere.

At about 10:00hrs I took the scope for a walk up Gore Lane to the cliffs just east of Orcombe Point. I didn't find anything of note in the fields & hedges on the way up. It was really quite hazy looking out to sea, but I did find a raft of over 100 Shags, a few Gannets flying & bobbing about, a Razorbill, a Great Crested Grebe & 2 Sandwich Terns. There were 2 Willow Warblers in the bushes on the cliff edge & a flock of Linnet in the adjoining field. As I was about to leave my first Devon Swallow made me duck as it suddenly hurtled up & over the cliff edge towards me. I wonder if I was the first thing it saw on its arrival from Africa!

It was a pleasant couple of hours but it turns out that I was in the wrong place......about 1/2 mile to the West on the Exmouth seafront someone saw a Short-eared Owl fly in, a Common Crane fly out, a Little Tern fly by and 2 Garganey land briefly on the sea! I would have been ecstatic with any one of those let alone all 4!! Oh well....there's always next time.

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