29th November

The two Barn Owls were still at Canons Farm. A Woodcock was inadvertendly flushed from Harholt Plantation (The Scrub). The pair of Stonechats were again in Hither Field. A Bullfinch, two Fieldfares and two Redwings were also seen in the Banstead Woods sector. Two Yellowhammers were noted at the farm.

Geoff Barter and Duncan Jennings

Sorry, but there will be no updates till at least 14th December - please continue to submit your records and they'll be caught up on upon my return to the country - DKC

New map

A 'prototype' of a new map covering extra sub-sites and incorporating updated names (in light of discovering official/historical/local names as well as making an effort to be make other names more relevant to the local area) has now been uploaded to the Map page. It also plots public rights of way. This is very much a work in progress, so please let us know what you think via email.

Also please note that after tomorrow evening there will be no updates till at least 14th December unless any group members would like to volunteer to post updates during this period

28th November 2016

In the evening, both Barn Owls were seen again as they patrolled Harrier Field. A group of five redpolls were seen between Piddly Pond and The Scrub and a singleton flew over the farm. Five Siskins were showing well around the larches near the Reads Rest Lane entrance to Banstead Woods.

juvenile Common Buzzard, Reads Rest Cottages

adult ♂ Yellowhammer, Infront George Field

Other sightings from the Canons Farm sector included a Pheasant, three Common Buzzards, a Common Gull, 50 Skylarks, 50 Fieldfares, 30 Redwings, a Mistle Thrush, two Pied Wagtails, a Meadow Pipit, a Bullfinch, four Greenfinches, 100 Linnets, 40 Goldfinches and seven Yellowhammers. The Banstead Woods sector held a Common Buzzard, 10 Redwings and three Bullfinches among a typical assortment of woodland birds.

Geoff Barter, David Campbell (photos), Duncan Jennings and Phil Wallace 

27th November 2016

A late (wintering?) Chiffchaff and a Lesser Redpoll were noted in Pages Acre and a Grey Wagtail flew over Wood Lane. Come the evening, the Barn Owl was seen in the usual area and two Little Owls were calling. In Banstead Woods, the female Stonechat was still in Holly Lane Meadow. A reasonable number of Fieldfares and Redwings were enjoying the ample supply of berries along Slangs and using Lunch Wood as a refuge, conservative totals for each being 75 and 60 respectively. Other sightings in the Canons Farm sector included a Pheasant, a Common Buzzard, two adult Common Gulls on the Legal & General sports field with 115 Black-headed Gulls, three Kestrels, 15 Jays, a Rook, 17 Goldcrests, just 16 Skylarks, 35 Long-tailed Tits, 13 Song Thrushes, two Pied Wagtails, a Meadow Pipit, three Bullfinches, four Greenfinches, 200 Linnets, 60 Goldfinches and eight Yellowhammers. Further sightings over in the Banstead Woods half of the patch were two Common Buzzards, a Kestrel, 12 Fieldfares, 50 Redwings, five Bullfinches and a Greenfinch.

Herring Gulls squabbling, Banstead Woods
♀ Stonechat, Holly Lane Meadow
Fieldfare, Slangs
Kestrel, Canons Farm
Kestrel, Canons Farm
Common Gull, Legal & General

Jack Barnes, David Campbell (photos 3-6), Nick Gardner, Ian Magness and Ian Ward (photos 1-2)

26th November 2016

Five Lapwings appeared in Infront George Field mid-afternoon; a treat considering the species' scarcity in our recording area so far this year. In the late afternoon, one of the Barn Owls quartered Harrier Field and a Woodcock was seen to drop in there; two Little Owls and a Tawny Owl were also heard at the farm in the twilight. Six Siskins were seen in Banstead Woods, including three still around the larches near the Reads Rest Lane entrance. Four Mistle Thrushes included two in each sector. Four Meadow Pipits were seen over Broadfield and two more flew over the Woods. Three Rooks included two over Fames Rough and one at the farm. As many as 150 Redwings busied themselves by gorging on berries and sub-singing in Banstead Woods.

Other sightings included a hen Pheasant, seven Bullfinches and a Greenfinch in the Banstead Woods sector and two Pheasants, a Common Buzzard, a Kestrel, 60 Skylarks, 50 Fieldfares, 40 Redwings, two Pied Wagtails, a Bullfinch, a Greenfinch, 75 Linnets, 50 Goldfinches and eight Yellowhammers at the farm.

Lapwing, Infront George Field
Mistle Thrush, Sheep Brow
Treecreeper, Banstead Woods

David Campbell (Mistle Thrush and Treecreeper photos), Darragh Culley, Paul Goodman, Ian Magness (Lapwing photo) and Ian Ward

25th November 2016

A decent day for finches in Banstead Woods was headlined by a female Brambling feeding busily with Chaffinches in an ash tree between Piddly Pond and The Scrub. Three Siskins had discovered a convenient tree hollow from which to drink by the larches near the Reads Rest Lane entrance and said larches drew in a Lesser Redpoll. Two Stonechats, a male and a female, looked at home in Hither Field and a pair of Mallards paraded around Piddly Pond. A Rook flew over the east side of the Woods and six Bullfinches were counted in the sector. Highlights at the farm were limited to a Meadow Pipit, five Rooks and six Common Gulls.

♂ Siskin, Banstead Woods

♂ Chaffinch, Reads Rest Cottages

Other sightings included two Common Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel, 40 Skylarks, 12 Fieldfares, three Redwings, a Pied Wagtail, 150 Linnets and a Yellowhammer at the farm; additional sightings at Banstead Woods included a Pheasant, a Common Buzzard, a Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel, three Fieldfares, four Song Thrushes, three Redwings.

David Campbell (photos), Paul Goodman and Duncan Jennings

Please note there will be no updates from 30th November to 15th December, unless any group members are willing to take the reigns and post brief key updates for a couple of weeks..?

24th November 2016

A blustery day, with a Siskin feeding in trees along the Short Route in Banstead Woods and a redpoll heard flying over there being the highlights. Two Rooks were feeding with the other corvids in Broadfield. Two Mallards flew over the farm, where a Meadow Pipit remained and three Pied Wagtails flew over. Thrushes included around 20 Fieldfares and 60 Redwings at the farm and 10 more of the latter in Banstead Woods. Three Lesser Black-backed Gulls passed overhead and Linnet numbers at the farm increased to around 500. The approachable juvenile Common Buzzard maintains its residence around Reads Rest Cottages and one of the Barn Owls was still on site, as were at least six Yellowhammers.

A late Comma was seen in Banstead Woods.

Please note there will be no updates from 30th November to 15th December, unless any group members are willing to take the reigns and post brief key updates for a couple of weeks (which would be appreciated)

juvenile Common Buzzard
Geoff Barter and David Campbell

23rd November 2016

Limited coverage at the farm produced nothing 'better' than two Mistle Thrushes and five Meadow Pipits. The fog tempted a few gulls onto Legal & General in the morning, including a single Common Gull among 52 Black-headed and 19 Herring Gulls. An influx of Blackbirds was quantified as a minimum of 50 birds.

Two Little Owls were heard in the evening, which is when the wind chose to pick up and a blank was drawn on the Barn Owl vigil which was maintained until nearly 17:00.

The only other birds to report from the farm were two Pheasants, two Common Buzzards, a Kestrel, 50 Fieldfares, five Redwings, five Song Thrushes, two Pied Wagtails, a Bullfinch, a Greenfinch, 175 Linnets and three Yellowhammers.

Jack Barnes, David Campbell and Ian Magness