Thursday 2nd April 2020

Birding in Lockdown: Links to Garden Lockdown Listing League and our Birding Ideas Page, helping to make the most of extra time as a result of the lockdown. We now have 26 participants in our Cornwall garden listing league, but room for plenty more!

Late news, 1/4, Buttermilk Hill: 12 Golden Plover (northern race), 1 Snipe, 4 Buzzard. (V Stratton)

Golden Plover, Viv Stratton

Golden Plover, Viv Stratton

Downderry: 23 Great Northern Diver, 1 Red-throated Diver, 8 Common Scoter, 1 Sandwich Tern offshore and a Wheatear seen flying north off the sea early this morning. (A Payne)

Devoran: Osprey this morning. (S Bearhop)

Watchcroft: 1 female Ring Ouzel near Garden Mine Cottage track. (J Evans)

Penzance: Black-throated Diver offshore. Also Cormorant caught an eel on the boating lake. (M Ahmad)

Cormorant, Mashuq Ahmad

Cormorant, Mashuq Ahmad

Constantine: female Merlin. (D Collins)

Maer Lake: 12 Black tailed Godwit, 2 Lesser Black backed Gull, 1 Grey Heron, 2 Greenfinch, 14 Herring Gull, c.14 Mallard. (H Kendall)

St Ives Island: 1 Kestrel, 2 Cormorant, 2 Shag, 112 Gannet, 2 Fulmar, 1 Manx Shearwater, 37 Kittiwake, 1 Mediterranean Gull, 1 Common Gull, 2 Great-black backed Gull, 78 Herring Gull, 1 Turnstone, 1 Oystercatcher, 2 Rock Pipit, 10 Common Dolphin. (P Nason)

Nanquidno: Green Sandpiper. (C Moore)

Sancreed: 50 Linnet, 2 Reed Bunting. (D Flumm)

Drift Reservoir: male Shoveler, 2 Teal. (D Flumm)

Godolphin Woods: Stock Dove and Green Woodpecker. (C Richards)

Talskiddy: 2 Raven, 1 Grey Wagtail, 1 Treecreeper, 6 Yellowhammer, 50 Linnet (B Bosisto)

Gluvian: 1 Redwing, 1 Mistle Thrush (B Bosisto)

Penrose: 1 Chiffchaff, 2 Kingfisher. (J Witheywood)

Stithians: 1 Swallow.

Truro: 3 Blackbird, male and female feeding fledgling. (R Netherton) Also fem Blackcap in garden. (I Bott)

Blackbird, Robin Netherton

Cornwall Lockdown Diary, Day 10:

Apart from the relentlessly bad news, this ‘world on pause’ feels weird. Even in the last War, life carried on for most – if not as normal – at least in close proximity to one another. The social distancing thing is unnatural and painful, so we pad round our gardens or local walks more or less alone or sit at home waiting for the government to set us free again.

It’s a disconcerting experience, but at least there’s time to really look at nature (as opposed to just ‘seeing’ it). I wandered to the far end of our patch this morning wondering if I might see the owner of the hoof-prints I keep seeing on the muddy path. I gazed at the fading daffodils and the emerging bluebells thinking No, it would not be today, when suddenly – in plain sight – a brown shape moved: a Roe Deer. How could I have missed an animal the size of a Great Dane? Animals certainly know how to blend in.

I couldn’t resist the challenge of the Garden Lockdown Listing. I managed 27 species with ease, and today I saw and heard a Skylark somewhere above me – 28, but I don’t think unless a Montezuma’s Oropendola turns up in my back garden I have a hope in hell of getting to Bob Bosisto’s total of over 40 bird species spotted from his!

Simon Marquis (palores@cbwps.org.uk)