This Chiffchaff was one that seems to have developed a wide range of calls that never seem to be heard until comparatively recent time. As well as the standard "hweet" there were various less melodic squeaks, whether these are young birds, still developing their vocabularies or birds from a population with a different accent I don't know.
I hadn't been to the undercliff at Kingsdown for a while, and since it does attract some migrants, and is particularly favoured by Black Redstarts I decided to have a look. What struck me today was just how many warning notices there are there. Bear in mind that the foot path, that is a public right of way is the closest to the cliff, and that the gates to the rest of the land are more or less always open.
I don't know how long the land has been left unused by the ministry of defence, but considering the difficulty it has in maintaining proper security one would hope that any dangerous items have been removed.
I wonder if someone in the ministry is a major shareholder in a company producing notices, there are at least 40 in the area.
If one is naughty enough to wander over to the edge of the sea wall this is the view one gets.
The cliffs still had lots of House Martins feeding along them, but I didn't see any going to nests to feed young, although there may well be some still occupied judging by the amount of activity there.
The various notices do have their uses, and although I didn't find a Black Redstart there were about six Wheatears around that were making use of the signs. I'm sure they realised that at high tide the water could be too deep to paddle in.
I have long felt that this is the ideal place to find a rarity, but every Wheatear I find there is just that. a (Northern) Wheatear, one day....................................
For a lot of the sea wall it is falling down, with large holes in it, just in case you thought that this was how it is meant to be a notice draws your attention, well several of them actually, to the fact that it is falling down!In case you didn't realise, a high wall, well above the sea has a sudden drop on the seaward side of it.
And you may have thought that the large fissure in the concrete was a design feature, but no, it is a dangerous crack. What would be do without H & S ?