A rather weird and wonderful day started at dawn with these two white DOVES (palombe) sitting on top of a conifer, and the discovery later of a very active and fascinating ASIAN HORNET (frelon asiatique) nest near the mare de Milieu.
Mid-morning a strange wader-like call overhead revealed this BAR-TAILED GODWIT (barge rousse), a first for the park and only the 2nd ever for the department, flying in leisurely but determined fashion straight northwest towards Bagnolet.
Cloudless skies again today with a strong wind - a terrible combination. It didn’t stop this OSPREY (balbu) and MARSH HARRIER (busard des roseaux) , though, from flying over early.
There were 9 migrating HONEY BUZZARDS (bondrée) today, including this one which dive-bombed down like a sparrowhawk, landing somewhere out of sight in the wooded borders of the prairie.
Also going south today were a group of 5 WHITE STORKS (cigogne blanche), a BUZZARD (buse) and 8 MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux).
Plenty of birds on site right now including a superb male REDSTART (rougequeue a front blanc) , at least 3 SPOTTED FLYCATCHERS (gobemouche gris) and 8 PIEDS (gobemouche noir).
Almost every summer (coincidentally when people are leaving to go on holiday) we get escaped cage-birds turning up, like the BUDGERIGAR (Perruche ondulée) which flew over this morning, and the pair of COCKATEILS (Calopsitte élégante) which were on site yesterday afternoon.
This is one of several brand-new and attractively designed information boards that now appear in various parts of the park. I must say the authorities are doing a really good job these days (and a few more bluethroats would be welcome)...
The first PIED FLYCATCHERS (gobemouche noir) of the autumn were seen this morning and a distant wheeling flock of 9 WHITE STORKS (cigogne blanche) took a whole half-hour to organise themselves and eventually glide southwest over the town, squadron-like, at 13h10.
Skywatching was a bit hard-going this morning what with the heatwave and all but at least there were a few migrating SWIFTS (martinet), and this HONEY BUZZARD (bondrée) was the best of five.
Quite birdy on site with a SPOTTED FLY (gobemouche gris), a couple of WILLOW WARBLERS (fitis), a REED WARBLER (effarvatte) in the reedbed and at least two calling NIGHTINGALES (rossignol).
Excellent news today with fledgling NIGHTINGALES (rossignol), one of them hiding here, milling around with agitated parents - this confirms successful breeding inside the park for only the second time.
HONEY-BUZZARDS (bondrée) are evidently still migrating - there were 3 of them today, along with a BLACK KITE (milan noir).
The MELODIOUS WARBLER (polyglotte) continues to sing.
This is the building in the Résidence Jean Moulin, just opposite the park entrance, that houses a colony of SWIFTS (martinet) every year, several couples nesting in the tiny slits above the window panes. There was great drama here early this morning with one bird flapping helplessly at one of the windows (the arrow marks the spot), unable to fly and totally stuck, one of its wings apparently jammed down a small crevice. Thankfully it was no longer hanging there an hour later, so our bird must be alive and well.
For the last few days the SWIFTS (martinet) have been gradually sorting it out and today they were all flying about in pairs, with plenty of copulation action going on as well.
Nothing new today on site. A couple of MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux) and BUZZARDS (buse) migrated over - still no sign of any Honeys...
One of several SAND MARTINS (rivage) here seen migrating overhead this morning and there was a SPOTTED FLYCATCHER (gobemouche gris) on site.
Best bird today though was this REDSHANK (gambette) which had flown over in the night.
A grey, cloudy, windy day with bits of rain. A very high-flying bunch of waders, racing north in and out of the rainclouds, was impossible to photograph and, thinking about it, they might well have been RUFF (combattant), a potential patch tick, drat!
The agony was lessened though by this superb male PIED FLYCATCHER (gobemouche noir) which spent a long time, in the same small tree, hunting down and bashing catapillers (chenilles), flies being very much off the menu these days.
Otherwise the NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) is still there at the cascade, a COMMON TERN (sterne pierregarin) flew north, and a PEREGRINE wandered around towards Vincennes.
It’s always great to see MED GULLS (mouette mélanocéphale) here but I do wish they’d fly a bit closer to the ground sometimes - this was a pretty classic sighting today of two wheeling north against the blue.
Otherwise nothing new - the NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) continues to sing day and night, and must surely be getting rather tired...
This male SPARROWHAWK (épervier) flew over with what I guess might even be a sparrow? (moineau), and there were good views of another migrating COMMON TERN (sterne pierregrain) and the first BLACK KITE (milan noir) of the year.
At least two NIGHTINGALES (rossignol) still present, one of which is singing non-stop, day and night.
After a six-year absence this excellent WOOD WARBLER (pouillot siffleur) turned up today, singing from the tall trees halfway along the Sentier des Vergers.
True to form the first REED WARBLER (effarvatte) of the year avoided the reedbed, prefering to skulk and mutter from the nearby nettles at the compost. A very high male HEN HARRIER (busard St Martin), the first I’ve seen in ages, glided straight east.
It’s been a good year so far for MED GULLS (mélano) and a group of 3 more, all adults, flew over today. A superb low-flying OSPREY (balbu) flew northeast and there were the first SAND MARTIN (rivage) and SERIN of the year.
The NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) was singing again near the mare de Bas and this morning I actually managed to see it!
An excellent skywatch late morning with this distant migrating WHIMBREL (courlis corlieu), only the second record for the park, plus the first SWIFT (martinet noir) of the year. Lots of unidentified little dots were flying high to the north, the vast majority probably MEADOW PIPITS (farlouse).
Another MEDITERRANEAN GULL (mélano) flew over in the company of a few BLACK-HEADEDS (rieuse). A NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) was singing at the Mare de Bas.
These two MARSH HARRIERS (busard des roseaux) flew fairly low overhead and quite a few SWALLOWS (rustique) were migrating, sometimes singing on the way. A single HOUSE MARTIN (hirondelle de fenêtre) was the first of the year, as was a NIGHTINGALE (rossignol) which gave a few blasts of song.
A BRAMBLING (pinson du Nord) flew over early this morning.
Early signs of spring migration this morning with this JACKDAW (choucas), 3 ROOKS (freux), LINNET, SKYLARK (alouette des champs) and WHITE WAGTAIL (bergeronette gris) all flying overhead. There was also a large, disjointed, distant flock of around 180 GOLDEN PLOVER (pluvier doré).
A TAWNY OWL (hulotte) was recorded during the night.