Tuesday, 10 November 2009

FIRECREST in St Albans

Highfield Park, St Albans is a recreational facility formed from the grounds of the former Hill End hospital which closed in 1995. Some of the land was used for housing and at that time the Highfield Park trust was created to manage the open areas. This consists of football pitches in a parkland setting with some new planting which have formed some good scrubby areas. There are also allotments and good hedgerows in the area.

I went there yesterday which was a rather birdless experience possibly due to the disturbance from the football games and the many dog walkers around; it was much less busy this morning the 9th.

I encountered the FIRECREST in a Giant Sequoia at TL178066 with a Goldcrest, at the time the whole area was alive with other birds, Great Tits, Blue Tits, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, Goldfinch etc. I lost sight of the bird very quickly but it is probably still in the area in a mixed tit flock.

I was carrying out an atlas roving survey at the time, this shows the value of going somewhere different. Perhaps this experience might encourage others to take on a tetrad, there are still a good number that are not allocated (Alan Gardiner)

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