4 nightingales heard this morning having returned to the usual location in the Martock area. (plus possible 1 or 2 others).
In addition, besides the chiffchaffs which have been present for some time, we found 2 reed warblers, several willow warblers, and at least a dozen blackcaps. All have probably arrived in the past 24 hours. A few swallows were seen but no sign yet of the local residents.
Amazing what a little sun and a fair wind can do.
I see you saw these in the Martock locality, I live nearby in East Lambrook and have often thought the area would be suitable but have never heard or seen any. Could you give me some more directions as to where the can be found please? Thank you
Along with others I've not heard any nightingales this year in Thurlbear, where there have been several breeding pairs each year. According to someone I know who's lived nearby for the last 70 years, this is the first year they've not been heard. Worrying...
John, referring to the total lack this year, and being equally concerned, we had a five minute "blast" of song this evening around 2130 as we sat in the garden. I am as disappointed as you so can only hope it is a sustained presence.
What had been a 30+ stronghold on the edge of West Sedge Moor until the early 90's finally dwindled to zero in 2012. Extinction in Somerset in another 5 years?
Nightingales can still be found at some locations in the East of the County, the population is small but I'm not expecting them to disappear totally by the end of this decade.
I live next door to Thurbear Wood, and this is one of my local patches, I have just heard two Nightingales singing first heard late on the 15th! so they have only just arrived! I've been out most evenings from the 19th April so they are nearly a month late! I was feeling rather depressed up to this point thinking they're not going to arrive, then to my amazement late on the 15th two birds calling away! Over the moon that they are back!
Hi Kevin, John, a "daytime" singer today at 11 am,. A most welcome sound!
Found three ,possibly four, singing in close proximity to each other two and a half weeks ago in the local area,(not Westport canal this year). Probably the same birds that Alan Pimbley found in the 'Martock' area? Would be obliged if you could email me Alan to confirm this ?
same as Edward's request, can you please provide directions to the Martock site to listen to the nightingales, many thanks, Nigel
Paul, the site to which I refer is a historic site for nightingales or so I am told by the owner.
Last year (2014) there was a maximum of 5 singing nightingales including one pair which bred. Cover is extensive so there may well have been more. Glimpses were few and far between.
Year (2013) there were 5 singing.
Cannot link on email as this exhorts me to download Outlook 2007 when I click your link. All too complicated for a non power laptop user. Perhaps you can contact me, if you need further info
Visited Thurlbear on Friday and didn't hear or see any sign of Nightingales for the first time in around 10 years!
Hi guys, thought I'd give you the bad news from Thurlbear, the two Nightingales we had singing from the 15th sang for two days then disappeared and haven't been heard from since, real shame! so those birds must of been just passing through, so I suppose the family of birds that have been breeding here over all these years are now no longer. Last year we only had two males singing so not sure how many young they produced but the chance of their off-spring returning and starting new families is going to be really slim. So there you have it these birds are probably on the front line of climate change, with things like the Sahara getting wider and wider and less places for them to stop off and rest, also problems of habitat loss, hunting and development etc...in their wintering grounds. Anyway fingers crossed for next year! On a positive note from Thurlbear Woods there has been two Cuckoo's calling for two weeks now and a few Garden Warbler. Also lots of Song Thrush on site singing!
All the Best and good birding
Edward, Paul and Alan, can anyone please provise me with an OS Grid Reference as I would love to come down from Bath to listen, but don't want to wander aimlessly around the Martock Area!!
Sorry Nigel but my original posting was deliberately unspecific in accordance with Brian Gibbs' posting on 13th February related to care in posting during the breeding season. It was intended merely to record that there were nightingales about.
Since then several reports from differing locations have been more pessimistic than in previous years regarding the status of nightingales in Somerset.
This week we have only had one unenthusiastic performance by a nightingale at the site in question and so we hope that the silence is the product of the birds getting down to nesting, rather than failing to find a mate and moving elsewhere
This is not me being uncooperative and am sure that you will appreciate that it is not prudent to broadcast the location at this delicate stage.
Echoing Alan's posting above I must also not be specific as the site is on private land accessed via a track past the farmers house - with the drying up of the usual well known public sites at Thurlbeare and others it would lead to a constant trickle of birders driving down there which I am sure would annoy him and lead to no-one being allowed . The two sites are separate though not far apart as the crow flies and there are probably more to be found with time and leg work. You may ask why post about birds on private land that can't be visited by others - mainly so that the county recorders pick up on this as I must admit I am lazy when it comes to sending in records , and it lets others have a flavour of what is happening around them so they might be alerted to look for them themselves. If the birds were in a safe place and within sight/earshot of a public path, I wouldn't hesitate to post location, as in previous years when we have had them along the Westport canal and the birds were in dense blackthorn scrub on the other side.
The reticence in posting precise details of sites is both understandable and in line with our posting guidelines, as noted.
For those wanting to hear Nightingales this year, there is the Cogload site featured in the last issue of The Bittern. The birds are pretty safely tucked away in the scrub between railway lines and audible (and visible distantly if you're very lucky) from the canal towpath at cST300274. Limited parking available at Charlton (near Creech Heathfield) or Outwood (off A361 between Durston and West Lyng).