This afternoon I chose to check out some other areas in the vicinity of Barbury Castle to see if there were any more SEO’s. I concentrated on the eastern side, first on the path above the shooting school and then the valley to the south of Smeathes Ridge. Unfortunately no Owls were seen, in fact there were very few birds at all. Mainly Pheasants (which are bred nearby), a few Blackbirds and a pair of Dunnocks. I did hear a Bullfinch but didn’t see it. Lovely views across the airfield in the crisp still air. That will change if they build the Solar Farm.
I had forgotten about the Richard Jefferies Stone so that was nice to see.
Also impressive was the size of the molehills, Supersized!
Along Smeathes Ridge a fair-sized flock of Starlings flew over, from the direction of Ogbourne and heading north-west. When I got back to my car it was still fairly light so I drove across to the western side of the Castle. Initially no sign of Owls on the hillside but I then picked one up on a distant post alongside the track. I drove slowly along in the car and saw that there were actually two birds. One flew but the other stayed as I pulled up nearby. It watched me for a couple of minutes before deciding to fly off. I was quite pleased with the pictures considering how little light there was. Also seen here was a Kestrel and a Buzzard.