Sunday in the Park

Alexandra Park in Hastings is a very friendly place to go watching birds. During Sunday morning’s RXbirdwalk there we were often engaged in conversation by walkers or dog-walkers wanting to know what we’d seen or to tell us what to look out for. It’s clear that there exists a strong appreciation of this most lovely and tree-rich of Victorian town parks where the bird most valued was the Kingfisher, hardly surprising in view of its vivid colours, barely credible in an urban setting and dealing out a daily dose of the miraculous to those with eyes to see.

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Yes, we did catch up with one, glowing in ironic contrast to the sludgy water above which it perched at the top Buckshole settling pond. Work is going on there to improve the general water quality, a couple of bunds having been installed to trap silt and many trees cut back to throw more light on the many Moorhens scuttling around the dark and muddy pool. Unfortunately many plastic bottles embellish the outflow.

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In past winters, the Alders around the settling ponds have been visited by Siskins, Lesser Redpolls & Goldfinches, picking seeds from the little cones but we saw just a couple of the latter, for SK & LS seem to be nowhere this year. We saw no Grey Wagtails either, perhaps the park’s truly iconic bird but maybe preferring nearby rooftops around Morrison’s car park where I often see them.

What we did see, great plenty, were Robins, just everywhere, unlike Wrens, their usual companions-in-scrub, which were confined to marginal, brambly zones. There were numerous Blue & Great Tits too, with fewer but louder Coal Tits, one or two flocks of Long-tailed Tits and frequent high-pitched Goldcrests.

Just NW of Harmer’s Pond, we had fantastic close views of Treecreepers and then a dazzling Green Woodpecker which probed the turf of an enclosure indifferent to passers-by. Altogether we saw & heard 33 species, the last of which was a Nuthatch on trees right by Dordrecht Way.

Click the “Alexandra Park” link below to see other posts about this site.

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2 Responses to “Sunday in the Park”

  1. Harmers pond, today, Saturday 17th January, was home to 5 cormorants, 2 herons, 2 kingfishers – all at the same time, within 5 minutes. Truly amazing in any setting.

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