Sunday, 23 November 2008

West Hartford patch tick

I had a quick half an hour trip to West Hartford today betwen 2;00 and 2;30 on the off chance that yesterdays Snow goose had decided to return overnight.
I decided to go through the business park entrance today rather than the marsh field way. A female Kestrel was resting on top of a lampost near the entrance before it went hunting over the roadside.
As I came to the end of the road where the permanent rubbish pile is I saw 8 Fieldfare feeding on the ground and in the trees near the metal fence area.
I could see there were no geese on the pool and only a few Herring Gull so I came back. Since the snow has melted at West Hartford the ground is soggier than ever and more plants are starting to grow from the puddles.
I was watching a wren on top of the reeds in one of these newly formed mini snow melt pools when I moved forward and flushed a Jack Snipe (Lifer)!
It ran out from the reeds on to the grass for a few seconds before it gave a snipe like call and flew off over the pool and out of sight.
When I first saw it I thought that it was another fieldfare because of its bold dark brown patterns on its back and sides. I wasn't sure whether it was a common snipe at first but the colours were darker, it was smaller, the call wasn't as loud, the beak was shorter and it's flight was straight rather than in a zig zag shape.
No sign of the Snow Goose or a short eared Owl but never then less a good patch tick.
On my way back a group of nine Greylag Geese flew north, I wonder if it's the same group that was with the snow Goose which is at Holywell Pond?

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