Friday, 24 July 2009

Successful Sigglesthorne Spots

All pics for this post (c) 2009 Anita & Peter Chicken
Spotted Flycatchers
It’s nice to know that some Spotted Flycatchers are still managing to hang on. This is a bird which used to visit our garden regularly in the 1980s, but apart from a passage migrant which stopped off in our apple tree one late summer afternoon a couple of years ago, it is now extinct as a breeding species in our immediate vicinity, and is not even seen here. Tophill Low had quite a bit of publicity earlier this month when their nest successfully fledged 5 young. Another nest among wisteria in a Sigglesthorne garden in East Yorkshire has also successfully fledged some young recently. This boringly-plumaged, yet charismatic-behaving species returns every year to Sigglesthorne, and included above are some pictures from an earlier year. These were taken through glass, which accounts for the discernible glare and reflections in some of them. Thanks to Anita & Peter Chicken for allowing me to share them with you. The plight of the Spotted Flycatcher is eloquently summarised in Michael McCarthy’s recent book Say Goodbye to the Cuckoo, which details the decline of this, and many another of our summer visiting migrants. This is highly recommended to anyone who may have noticed a worrying decline in the summer songsters belting out their songs in our local woodland, especially over that last couple of years. If we aren’t careful several species may go the way of the Wryneck and the Red-backed Shrike, and become extinct as British breeding birds – this mustn’t be allowed to happen!

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