Sunday 10 January 2021

Black Redstart

Another early morning stroll around Bystock reserve, in frosty conditions, produced Dartford Warbler, Marsh Tit, Treecreeper, 2 Siskins and just one Lesser Redpoll amongst a few other bits and pieces.

Not a lot to report today but off Mudbank - drake and female Goldeneye, 11 Red-breasted Mergansers, 13 Great Crested Grebes, 35 Dark-bellied Brent Geese, 16 Pintail, 10 Wigeon, 1 Greenshank, c3/400+ Dunlin and 70+ Mallard. Nearby the male Black Redstart was in the Shelly beach area.

I relocated yesterday's Dartford Warbler in a different part of the reserve this morning. A second individual was across the road on the edge of Withycombe Raleigh Common.

One of four Mistle Thrushes on the archery club playing fields. Three Redwing were also present.

 The recent icy, cold weather has forced the Shelly Beach Black Redstarts down into gardens, and consequently made them much more difficult to locate. I was fortunate to bump into this male this afternoon but it soon disappeared.


  1. Some lovely frosty landscapes Matt. Just catching up with some of your recent posts on this wet, miserable morning! Nice shot of the Dartford Warbler. I managed to see one a week ago in Richmond Park where there had been 4 in December & managed to see 2 in a day. Frustratingly a Black Redstart was photographed on a church a couple of miles from me, but seems not to have lingered.

  2. Many thanks Neil - Black Reds have a habit of vanishing but I reckon there's a good chance it'll resurface. The birds down here tend to go awol when the weather worsens, then reappear when it improves. Wasn't aware that Richmond Park has Dartfords - fantastic! All the best. Matt

  3. The Dartfords aren't resident in Richmond Park but birds turn up every autumn & hang around for a few months. Presume dispersing birds from the Surrey heaths?