I helped Lindsay McDougall do some Atlas work yesterday morning at Havannah NR.
On the way to Havannah we stopped at the roadside at Dinnington to look for Little Owl but there was no sign.
The rain turned to patchy drizzle as we walked around the site.
Before yesterday I had only heard of Atlas work but wasn’t sure exactly what it was.
Areas like Havannah must be the more exciting areas of the grid as I can imagine some areas can be a bit bleak especially in winter; still it’s a good chance to explore sites you would normally overlook or never even know existed.
We tried to do a circular route of the site starting in the car park, go through the first area of woodland, checking the bordering fields, check the ponds and then check the rest of the woodland leading up to the new plantation near the Sage building.
Despite the drizzle the birds were still in full song with Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler the first birds of the day. 11 Willow Warbler were recorded in total.
Pied Wagtail flew over and Robin, Wren and Blackbird were all over the reserve.
In the fields a pair of Lapwing with three young were tying to camouflage themselves in the mud.
A pair of Yellowhammer were feeding on the ground next to the pond and another was calling from the backfields, as was a Reed Bunting.
A pair of Moorhen with young and 3 Mallards were on the pond.
A Garden Warbler was singing from a tree on the woodland track and now I am starting to notice the differences in Warblers songs such as Garden Warblers and Blackcaps.
2 Blackcaps and three Whitethroats were also singing on the track.
After scanning the farm fields just outside the reserve we headed to Hazelrigg to record the species absent from the reserve such as House Sparrow, Swift and Swallow.
We quickly checked Arcot Pond on the way back but a pair of Common Terns were the only birds of interest.