Posted by Graeme Lyons , Friday, 31 December 2010 17:55
Another strange day. Only seven Skylarks using the farm I surveyed today but there were hundreds flying high over the site. Between 9.00 am and 12.00 pm there was an almost continuous movement, many of single birds flying with some easterly component to their flight. I suspect these are birds moving back after a trip to the west during the cold snap. On top of the farmland birds, I also saw a few goodies. There was one each of Marsh Tit, Hawfinch, Firecrest and Red Kite! A great list, shame none of them are the target species.
However, a stranger encounter happened right at the start of the survey. I was heading down a very narrow country lane, just within the recording area of the farm I was going to survey and a mini was heading up in the other direction. There was only room for one car and a stand off was inevitable. I was reluctant to reverse as twisting whilst seated is not good for a recovering prolapsed disc. The other driver reversed but I could tell he was annoyed so I wound the window down to explain as I drove past. I was quite surprised to see Hugh Dennis and his huge cheesy grin. He sped off before I finished my sentence! What's the BTO code for Hugh Dennis?
Finally, I found these fungi literally bursting out of plastic-wrapped hay bales. I am pretty sure they are Split-gill Schizophyllum commune, Phillips states this is a typical place to find this fungus. This is a new species for me and puts me on 3021 for the end of the year. The challenge to get to 4000 species by this day next year is now on. I'll write another post about this tomorrow and hopefully I'll get a chance to play with my new camera too. Let's see what strangeness 2011 brings! Happy New Year!