Sunday 24 March 2013

Reed buntings and Treecreeper on South Road

Anne Dunbar-Nobes writes:
The cold and snowy weather brought two Reed Buntings to our garden over the weekend (23-4 March). Apparently Reed Buntings will leave their reed-bed habitats in the winter and move onto farmland, and in tough weather they are occasionally seen feeding in gardens. These Reed Buntings were feeding on seed on the ground under the hanging feeders and were seen throughout the afternoon on both days. The photos are of the male with the distinctive black head; the other had sparrow-like streaky brown markings, with a distinctive pattern on its cheeks, so presumably the female.

Reed bunting (male) head markings

Reed bunting (male), garden

While I was waiting to take a photo of them, a Treecreeper suddenly appeared on a Silver Birch tree in the background, so I snapped that too!

Treecreeper on silver birch in snow

More West Field bird life

Today, Peter Dawson has had (Lesser) Redpoll visitors:

Saturday 23 March 2013

West Field bird life

Peter Dawson has taken these photos in his garden...
Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella)

Eurasian Jay (Garrulus glandarius)

Common Reed Bunting (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Sunday 17 March 2013

Abington Naturewatch Sector Coordinators

Programme - David Farrant
Membership - June Waring
Rivercare - Peter Brunning
Birds - Derek Turnidge
Amphibians & Reptiles - Anne Dunbar-Nobes
Insects - Jennifer Hirsh
Mammals - Gill Smith
Plants - Pat Daunt
School Liaison - Robin Harman

For contact details, please refer to the Record or email Peter Brunning (see below)

Saturday 16 March 2013

Summer 2013 Programme

At the Naturewatch meeting today, we published a draft programme

River Sampling – meet at the River Bridge (by the Ford)
Sat 27th April 10:30
Tues 25th June (was Weds 26th June) – evening
Sat 31st August 10:30
Advance warning – Saturday 28th Sep – Activity day to mark World Rivers Day **
"World Rivers Day is celebrated annually on the last Sunday of September"

Plant Study walks
Tues 18th June – Hildersham Woods
Weds 10th July – Granta Park
(with insects) Sat 27th July – Fleam Dyke
we also hope to arrange a Walk on Franklins Farm in Aug/Sept

Bird Activities
Sat/Sun 25/26th May – Local Birdwatch
Sat 1st June – RSPB Lakenheath

Sat 6th July – Paxton Pits
(with Plants) Aug 10th – Roman Road **
2 Moth nights – to be confirmed, subject to suitable weather

** activities involving children

All the above are subject to confirmation.
Further details will be advised by email nearer the time.


Following the mention of Siskins at the Naturewatch meeting this morning, Andy Merryweather has provided these pictures:

Female Siskin

Male Siskin

The Aims of Abington Naturewatch

At their meeting on 9 April 2005 the members approved this revised version of the aims of Abington Naturewatch:

  • To monitor and record the wildlife (fauna & flora) within the borders of the Abingtons;
  • To encourage protection of our wildlife, maintain its quality and foster its diversity;
  • To promote awareness of the richness, potential and problems of the natural environment of the Abingtons;
  • To cooperate in improving access to the local natural environment for the benefit of all Abington villagers.

Pat Daunt, Founder

The organisation is informal and communication is by email if possible; members are notified of events from time to time. Contact details are maintained by a small "project team". There is currently no membership fee as costs are covered by voluntary contributions at events.

Members are encouraged to report notable sightings of flora and fauna within the Abingtons to the appropriate sector coordinator and an illustrated record is published annually.

A map of the area covered, with some features noted, is available here:>

For more information or to join, please contact David Farrant on (01223) 892871.

Contributions to our records should be sent to sector contacts or either of the above. Photographs may also be submitted to Andy Merryweather (