Friday, 2 December 2011

Plus one Peregrine = minus one Pigeon

The main corvid roost around Waldridge is at North Lodge between here and Birtley and I suspect most of the local Jackdaws and Rooks go there. I usually see a couple of hundred Jackdaws and a smaller number of Rooks at dawn or dusk on route to or from that direction. This morning, in the town centre however, there were many more than usual, mainly Jackdaws but well over 1000 birds in total, over the town centre at first light. They were soaring around, as opposed to heading to their usual feeding grounds.  Then the resident flock of Feral Pigeons took off followed by a fair few of the Pied Wagtails that roost on the Morrisons (formerly Co-op) building. A few seconds later I saw the reason as a Peregrine swooped down from the gloom, hit a pigeon in mid-air, grabbed it in one talon, stalled and then consolidated it's hold with the other foot and shot off southwards.  Nice little start to the day.
Still botanising in the dark but managed another 4 species, now on 8!

Shepherd's-purse Capsella bursa-pastoris
Nipplewort Lapsana communis
Smooth Sow-thistle Sonchus oleraceus
Petty Spurge Euphorbia peplus

Oh for the daylight of the tomorrow.

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