For a long time, despite the reports of the huge crash in House Sparrow numbers from many places in the UK, the flock visiting my garden seemed to be in good health and number.
I'm sorry to say that this year all seems to have changed and instead of the 20 or 30 that regularly visited the feeders in past years, we are lucky to see more than a couple at any time. I can think of nothing that has changed that could have caused this reduction, the number of Greenfinches, Chaffinches and Goldfinches is building up, but the number of Sparrows is still low. I even noticed that although I saw and heard a few when walking through Whitfield yesterday it was just a few, and not what you would have expected to see in that sort of habitat ten or so years ago.
One species that hasn't suffered a reduction is the Woodpigeon, the number visiting my garden continues to increase, they particularly like taking a bath, and when they do I always have to refill it as they seem to take much of the water with them when they leave.
Yesterday afternoon, one of the farmers where I was doing my TTV told me he sometimes saw a Barn Owl near by. I decided to take a look round the area towards dusk this afternoon. I didn't see any owls, but as I was passing one field I noticed a couple of Carrion Crows on the ground next to an odd sort of lump. It was a narrow road and by the time I'd parked safely I could see that it was a Buzzard with it's wings spread over something on the ground. As soon as I wound down my window it took off and landed in a near by tree.