Along the Kennet

This afternoon I spent a couple of hours birding along the River Kennet. I started with a scan of the valley from the top of the hill above Stitchcombe. Not much seen, just a few Coots, a Mute Swan and a Heron. Moving on to Axford I added Chaffinch of which a couple were flycatching over the water, Wren, Swallow, Canada Goose and Moorhen. To the east of the village were a few more ducks including Gadwall, Tufted and a male Mandarin. Also here, sitting on the grass on the bank was a Black Swan. Final stop was at Knighton which turned into a bit of a Warbler Fest with seven species noted. Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff were soon heard and then seen. A Cetti’s called from near to the first wooden bridge. Along the river were a couple of Sedge Warblers, Blackcap and my first Lesser Whitethroat of the year The trilling call of a Little Grebe could be heard. A couple each of Wren and Dunnock were also seen. In the distance a Cuckoo was calling  and as I was heading back towards the car I caught the sound of a reeling Grasshopper Warbler. Overhead were the usual Buzzards and Red Kite along with a few more Swallows which seem, all of a sudden to be everywhere.

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