Thursday 26th March 2020

Millbrook: Willow Warbler singing at Withnoe Barton this morning. (M Jordan)

Marazion: 7 Shelduck off Hogus rocks briefly. (S Rogers)

Chyandour: 7 Shelduck briefly. (L Proctor)

Sancreed: Red Kite flew NW 08:40, 8 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap, 1 Little Egret, 2 Teal. (D Flumm)

Red Kite, Dave Flumm

Red Kite, Dave Flumm

Lamorna Cove: 1 male Black Redstart at Carn-du. (M McKee)

Lamorna: 1 Iceland Gull circling high over the valley at 2pm drifting SW. (M McKee)

Bude: 6 Buzzard, 5 Chiffchaff, 3 Blackcap, 2 Willow Warbler, 6 Linnet, 18 Goldfinch from private garden. (N Bastin)

Newquay: ad Glaucous Gull still present in field with pink elephant. (S Rowe)

Charlestown: 1 Rock Pipit, 1 Chiffchaff. (D Hastilow)

Pelynt: 2 Red Kite over. (K Knight)

Trencrom: 2 Mistle Thrush rattling from upper branches of huge beech tree, 3 Green Woodpecker, several Nuthatch, 1 singing Blackcap, 3 singing Chiffchaff, 2 Great Spotted Woodpecker 1 drumming, several Raven. (J Evans)

Mount’s Bay: 3cy Yellow-legged Gull on St Clement’s Isle, 1 imm Pomarine Skua. (M Elliott)

Newlyn Harbour: 2cy Iceland Gull again briefly, then flew to Mousehole. (L Proctor)

Polgigga: ad male Black Redstart. (K Wilson)

Gluvian: 1 Common Snipe, 8 Buzzard, 1 Sparrowhawk, 2 Raven , 6 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap. (B Bosisto)

Talskiddy: 2 Little Grebe, 1 Moorhen, 8 Canada Goose, 4 Mallard, 4 Chiffchaff, 1 Blackcap. (B Bosisto)

Truro: 2 Raven, 1 Sparrowhawk, 9 Buzzard, 1 Green Woodpecker, 2 Greenshank, 2 Common Sandpiper. (R Augarde)

Rosewall Hill:  3 Wheatear; f Sparrowhawk high in off the coast being mobbed by 18 Ravens; 1 White Wagtail; 2 prs Meadow Pipit; 1pr Stonechat. (J Hawkey)

River Cove: 7 singing Chiffchaffs, 1 singing Blackcap. (J Hawkey)

Cornwall (location withheld): Great Bustard reported (presumably from the Salisbury Plain reintroduction programme and hence not ‘countable’, see website here).

Lockdown birding ideas: Brush up on your id skills. There are a lot of bird identification quizzes on the internet but my favourite has to be the bird ID quiz from Nord University. Without having to register you can choose both visual and sound quizzes from four different levels of difficulty. Most of the countries of Europe are covered and there is also a Western Palearctic section so there really is something for everybody and it’s a great learning tool. For the more competitive amongst you all the finished quizzes show on a daily leaderboard so you can challenge your birding friends ! Please follow the link below (sent in by B Bosisto): https://quiz.natureid.no/bird/quiz/

A Cornwall Lockdown Diary, Day 3:

Corvid update. No, not the dreaded virus, the crow family. We had three Jackdaws to stay some weeks ago. We were away for a few days and three of them fell down the chimney and were trapped in the house. Sadly, two of them were found dead by neighbours who had realised something was amiss, but one was still alive and was caught and released. The chimney repair people are booked but can’t come until the virus subsides. Makeshift chimney blockades will have to do till then. Jackdaws indoors: not recommended. Very messy.

But I’m fond of Jackdaws. Every day at dusk dozens of them wheel around the cloudless blue/purple/pink sky about 600 feet up, ‘chacking’ away to one another. They are joined by a few Rooks, noticeably bigger black silhouettes amongst their smaller cousins. The Rooks have three nests in our trees – a small rookery for a small hamlet. Of course we get Magpies in the garden, and Jays live here too which swoop away silently when disturbed before letting out their harsh cry only when they’ve made cover. We rarely get Carrion Crows, but a deep cronk from on high signals a Raven or two soaring at tremendous height or pursuing a determined course towards the coast. So not a bad tally of corvids for our patch, but not keeping any hopes up for the arrival of a Chough to complete the set, but you never know. These are strange times indeed.

Simon Marquis

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