The Bird Blog - April 2024


13th May

The arboretum is in bloom and alive with a variety of bird call and song. The month of April has come and gone, and the midpoint of May is nearly upon us.

Spring is happening, and the summer migrant birds are arriving. Several Blackcap and Chiffchaff. Chiffchaff are in full voice and on one occasion I heard the tumbling song of the Willow Warbler. Hopefully the sky over the arboretum will be graced by Swallow and finally Swift.

In relation to the ponds, I have continued to see two Moorhen as well as a male and female Mallard Duck, but as yet no sign of them breeding successfully.

The Jackdaw seen exploring large trees for prospective places to nest, now appear to have taken up occupancy one of the cavities in a bough of an Ash tree.

For those of you who may be interested in bird migration, Osprey have now returned to Rutland Water and are breeding. These large spectacular birds can regularly be seen flying across the entire reserve as they hunt for fish.

Two other summer migrants from Africa have also returned to Rutland Water to breed. The Hobby a medium sized Falcon that can be seen twisting and turning as it hunts insects on the wing. This amazing bird also has the speed and agility to catch Swallows and Swifts.

The other returning migrant bird is the Cuckoo. The iconic call made by the male bird can now be heard across the reserve.

Finally at the beginning of May, early one morning I had a Spotted Flycatcher briefly visit my garden, another summer migrant to this country from Africa. It just shows when you watch birds you never quite know what can turn up!

Phil Taylor