birding beaumonts


19th August

Many more birds on site this morning: SPOTTED and PIED FLYCATCHERS (gobemouches gris et noir), a NIGHTINGALE (rossignol), 3 WHITETHROATS (grisette), GARDEN WARBLER (fauvette des jardins) and visibly more CHIFFCHAFFS (véloce).

5 HONEY BUZZARDS (bondrée) went over in the late morning, along with 30 or so SWIFTS (martinet).


15th August

Two WHITE STORKS (cigogne blanche) and a BLACK KITE (milan noir) this afternoon, and more SWIFTS (martinet).

13th August

Small numbers of SWIFTS (martinet) going through this afternoon, along with 3 HONEY BUZZARDS (bondrée) - this one here was very low and might have landed.

REED WARBLERS (effarvatte) have clearly bred this year and are moving noisily around the bushes at the Compost. 

23rd July

A distant BLACK STORK (cigogne noire) at midday, gliding slowly southwest against the wind.

29th May

A rare traipse around the northern bit of the park produced these CRESTED TITS (mésange huppée), the left-hand bird strangely frozen like a stealthy heron for several seconds. The MELODIOUS WARBLER (hypolais) looks to have gone, but the REED WARBLER (effarvatte) is still there at the Mare Perchée.

28th May

The singing MELODIOUS (hypolais) still present, presumably an unpaired male...

26th May

A singing MELODIOUS WARBLER (polyglotte) near the cascade today. REED WARBLER (effarvatte) still in the reed bed.

24th May

Two adult MED GULLS (mélano) this afternoon.

23rd May

Two immature PEREGRINES wandered over this morning, low enough for once to get a few photos. A REED WARBLER (effarvatte) was singing in the reed bed.

18th May

Pierre had a singing MARSH WARBLER (verderolle) this afternoon near the Mare de Milieu.

13th May

BLACK STORK (cigogne noire) this afternoon.

12th May

No sign of the MARSH WARBLER (verderolle) this morning and there weren’t so many raptors as yesterday, although this superb MONTAGU’S HARRIER (busard cendré) flew eastwards, just before the rains arrived.

11th May

A singing MARSH WARBLER (verderolle) on site today, and there was an amazing passage of HONEY BUZZARDS (bondrée) around midday, when 13 went over in under two hours.

10th May

Excitement early doors with this brilliant MERLIN (émerillon) flashing fast over the Cascade.

3 MUTE SWANS (cygne tuberculé), a very rare bird here, flew low to the southwest and a pair of HAWFINCHES (gros bec) flew over, yet again.

A few flyover YELLOW WAGTAILS (printa) included a probable thunbergi, and in the afternoon 4 HONEY BUZZARDS (bondrée) and a MARSH HARRIER (busard des roseaux) went north.

A very quiet REED WARBLER (éffarvatte) still at the Mare Perchée.

9th May

A HAWFINCH (gros bec) and 2 discretely-singing REED WARBLERS (effarvatte) on site this morning.

HOUSE MARTINS (hirondelle de fenêtre) were migrating in numbers, and a HONEY BUZZARD (bondrée) and an OSPREY (balbu) flew over.

7th May

Shots above of one of two SPOTTED FLYCATCHERS (gobemouche gris) on site today, and a FOX in the Savanna. The first REED WARBLER (effarvatte) of the spring was in bushes near the Mare de Bas.

6th May

A SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (gobemouche gris) along the Sentier des Vergers this morning.

5th May

Thick white mist began breaking up in the late afternoon, revealing lots of hirundines (mainly SWALLOWS) racing north against a blustery northerly wind.

The first HONEY-BUZZARDS (bondrée) of the spring went over, as did this excellent MERLIN (émerillon) which dashed north over the Cascade, our first ever May bird.

3rd May

Nothing today, but I really should mention this CHIFFCHAFF (véloce) nesting at the eastern end of the Sentier des Vergers, which calls an odd-sounding « seeu » and « swee » . And there’s a different bird sounding much the same in the parc Mabille right now. These are calls we hear a lot in autumn but so far this spring I dont think I’ve even heard the usual « hooet » from any bird, which is all a bit strange…

2nd May

Excellent skywatching today with a MONTAGU’S HARRIER (busard cendré) migrating northeast, circling on the way. The Montreuil SWIFTS (martinet) have been back in force these past few days, and they were screaming and swarming overhead in the morning, making numerous attempts at copulation…
Another LESSER WHITETHROAT (babillarde) was on site, and there’s a bonded pair of GARDEN WARBLERS (fauvette des jardins) now in the Petite Prairie.

30th April

A singing male GOLDEN ORIOLE (loriot) was on site for half an hour or so early morning, seen flying restlessly over the treetops of the Bois de Bordure.  

Two MEDITTERRANEAN GULLS (mélano) circled very high to the south, tagging loosely behind a bunch of BLACK-HEADED GULLS (rieuse) and for the third time recently two HAWFINCHES (gros bec) flew over, so there might just be a breeding pair nearby. This BLACK KITE (milan noir) and a couple of MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux) flew north.

29th April

This smart-looking WHINCHAT (tarier des près) was on site this morning and in the afternoon a BLACK KITE (milan noir) migrated high overhead.

At least 2 GARDEN WARBLERS (fauvette des jardins) today, and a  FIRECREST (roitelet a triple bandeau) was singing on the the Ave des Marronniers.

26th April

This male SPARROWHAWK (épervier) flapped quite low over the Cascade this morning - looks like they’re nesting again this year in the Bois de Bordure.

A pair of HAWFINCHES (gros bec) flew northeast, apparently migrating.

24th April

A RING OUZEL (merle a plastron) on site this morning, and a pair of WHITETHROATS (grisette) were busily nest-building.

23rd April

A hard-to-see SEDGE WARBLER (phragmite des joncs), a very good bird for here, glimpsed briefly early morning at the Compost where it sang on and off from an inpenetrable mass of bushes. Not much else…

22nd April

A few new arrivals early this morning - there’d clearly been a fall overnight. Near the Cascade was singing LESSER WHITETHROAT (babillarde), MELODIOUS WARBLER (hypolais polyglotte) and NIGHTINGALE (rossignol), and a TREE PIPIT (pipit des arbres) flushed from the reedbed. Also on site was a RING OUZEL (merle a plastron) and a restless FIELDFARE (grive litorne).

18th April

Two more firsts for the year this morning : SWIFTS (martinets) racing north in a line, and this fine HOBBY.

17th April

A good morning for pipits, which don't often land on site: the first TREE PIPITS (pipit des arbres) of the year were in the Petite Prairie (one even singing briefly), and this MEADOW PIPIT (farlouse) was flushed from the short grass at the Compost nearby.

16th April

The first WHITETHROAT (grisette) and NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) of the spring this morning.

15th April

The first WILLOW WARBLER (fitis) of the spring was singing near the Cascade this morning.

Here's one of three YELLOW WAGTAILS (printa) which dropped in to feed in and around the Mare Perchée. They stayed at least 30 minutes, constantly flushed into nearby trees by blasted dogs and dogwalkers. This was all actually quite exciting - yellow wags almost never land on site !

14th April

The first GARDEN WARBLER (fauvette des jardins) of the year today was singing discretely on the edge of the Savanna. Almost in the same bush was a LESSER WHITETHROAT (babillarde), giving the odd half-hearted rattle.

In the early afternoon an excellent female MERLIN (émerillon) went northeast, making many circles « en route » high over rue Paul Doumer.

11th April

Yet another migrating GREEN SANDPIPER (cul-blanc) here, dive-bombing down to the Mare Perchee this morning at the sight of its small patch of water.

Fairly large numbers of MEADOW PIPITS (farlouse) were flying overhead, but hardly any other passerines.

3rd April

Plenty of MEADOW PIPITS (farlouse) going over in the early morning (67 actually), and this GREEN SANDPIPER (culblanc) dropped in and landed for a second or two at the Mare Perchée, flushed immediately by a man and dog.

31st March

This STONECHAT (traquet pâtre) on site this morning, and a RING OUZEL (plastron) dropped in briefly.

30th March

This BUZZARD (buse) flew over today, and there were two more migrating MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux).

One or two SWALLOWS (rustique) going through, along with the first HOUSE MARTIN (hirondelle de fenêtre) of the spring.

28th March

An amazing migrating HOOPOE (huppe fasciée) flew right over my head this morning and straight on to the north, (without stopping, unfortunately). Pretty exciting stuff - only the third ever at Beaumonts, and a patch-tick for me.  

Raptors were moving again today with 5 MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux) and a ringtail HEN HARRIER (St Martin) going north. In the afternoon a PEREGRINE wandered around high over Fontenay, and a BLACK KITE (milan noir) towards Paris.

27th March 

WHITE STORK (cigogne blanche) and another MARSH HARRIER (busard des roseaux) this afternoon.

26th March

Sorry folks for the long delay in writing, but been away a lot recently. Went up this afternoon for a skywatch and just couldn’t believe what I was seeing there at the top: just look here at what the mindless idiots in charge at the Town Hall have done while I’ve been away...cut down the reed bed and all of the surrounding willows !!! Apparently the "reasoning" for this wanton destruction of good habitat (which can host breeding Reed Warbler and Mallard) is that it opens up the space necessary for summering SWIFTS (martinet) to drink from the pond ! Yes, you heard it right…this is what we have to live with, unfortunately.

Anyway, after this dramatic shock there was good skywatching had from the Cascade in the company of Quentin and Toby, on a warm and sunny first day of spring : an excellent male HEN HARRIER (Busard St Martin) and 4 MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux) were all seen migrating high to the north, (and there were surely others missed in the cloudless, hazy sky). Pictured here is one of the Marsh Harriers which was totally lacking a tail, causing all sorts of panic as it flew towards us : « it’s an owl…no it’s not, it’s a heron » , etc etc…

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