Sunday 15 October 2023


We are beseiged by Short-eared Owls from all sides. Single birds Monday and Tuesday, a bird early morning yesterday, and then what is likely two birds this morning and could have even been three. It's all getting a bit silly. I missed yesterday's, a slower start meant I didn't get out until the show was over. I nearly missed out today as well - a late night on Saturday drinking Barolo and Barbaresco meant I was still stumbling about indoors when the first bird was seen at 7.30am. Bins ever at the ready I poked my head out of one of the skylights and caught it flying west with an entourage of Crows, my fourth for the garden. It departed high south-east a short while later.

Once out on the Flats it was mainly to do with Finches, with Chaffinch and Siskin the most numerous, but at 8.13am I was with Simon when I picked up a Short-eared Owl south of the patch flying west. The same bird as earlier? Possibly. This bird then veered north, crossed over the patch and disappeared to the north - tracked by James from his house. Only six minutes later I spotted another Owl, or at least what I assume had to have been another one, coming in low from the south. This also could have been the same one that had left at 7.30am, but surely can't have been the same one that had gone north. We will never know, but whilst birds 1 & 2 could have been the same, or indeed birds 1 & 3 could have been the same, I find it very unlikely that birds 2 & 3 were the same given the timing. I could claim three I suppose, but I think the safest thing to do is to put down two. Regardless, there are enough about that we've had to change the signage.