Thursday, 4 January 2007

Otmoor Starling Display. 2nd Jan 2007

The morning started off well with my first year sighting of a Wren as it visited the garden.Soon after a Male Sparrowhawk flew in to the garden at lightning speed, it spooked everything from the bird feeders but didn't catch it's prey, he was left perched on the feeder pole looking rather out of breath and disappointed that it would leave empty handed, both Male and Female Sparrowhawk visit our garden regularly and can also been seen flying low along the country lanes nearby.
A afternoon visit to RSPB Otmoor was next and although i did see Pintail and a small flock of Lapwing and Golden Plover it was quiet, the Starling display at dusk was certainly an added bonus on a cold and windy day.
I had heard that the Starling roost at Otmoor was impressive but hadn't really appreciated how good it was,we watched as numbers built up above the surrounding fields before dusk.Slowly small flocks grouped in distant trees before taking to the air and grouping in larger numbers, before long it went from hundreds to thousands and attempts to count them became fruitless.The sky was soon full of Starlings as they wheeled and dived in formation, growing in numbers as they flew.They continued to display for over 30 minutes and it has been estimated that numbers have been reaching somewhere in the region of 40,000,It was incredible sight and well worth the visit.

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