Friday, 13 September 2019

Beddington Farm - Back to the Farm!


I was up and out at the crack of dawn heading to Beddington Farm to catch up on some species to add to my September challenge. The site is far from what it used to be and the new access and site “crystal maze” obstacle course does not appeal to my patch watching senses like it used to! The wet grassland area is still being dug with the few Tree Sparrows that are left ducking and diving between feeding as the machinery bypasses the feeder stations! 


Once complete the area will have to be drained for three years to allow seeding and growth before the area can be flooded and become “operational”. 100 Acre also seems to be out of bounds with no route through to this area! If you are on site dressed in your PPE hi-viz gear you cannot access the hides and visa versa making full site coverage tricky to say the least!


The areas to and on to the mound are now lined with fencing which has allowed the scrub to grow providing a useful migrant trap. Several Whinchat was seen in this area with a Stonechat, Whitethroat, Chiffchaff and other common passerines.


The North Lake held a variety of waterfowl including a female Pintail which has been present for a few days.


Whilst checking through the Shoveler, Gadwall, Teal, Tufted Duck, Mallard and Pochard a Wigeon was spied. This species does not appear in any great numbers on the Farm and therefore was a welcome addition to the day list.


Most of the gulls were frequenting the area for the proposed wet grassland so I spent some time looking through a reasonable number of Herring, Lesser Black Backed, Black Headed, Greater Black Backed and a few odd looking gulls.


Whilst doing this Dodge messaged me with news of a Spotted Flycatcher behind the hide! I debated whether to trek back having had one yesterday at Canons Farm but joined Dodge, Tank and Glen on the Sand Martin bank.

Other migrants seen during the morning Swallow, Yellow Wagtail, Meadow Pipit and Buzzard.

I recorded 54 species during my morning visit back to Epsom Downs for Geese watch later!