Flanders Moss NNR
It is #Internationaldawnchorusday today. And to celebrate it I made my annual early morning pilgrimage to Flanders Moss to bath in it. It is that combination of early morning with the place to yourself, the smug feeling of being one ahead of everyone else and that amazing mass chorus of birdsong being belted out. Such a contrast to the late winter months of only a few weeks ago.
The morning I chose was cold and frost (aren’t they all at the moment) and slightly surprisingly foggy. At least until the sun warmed things up. This meant numb fingers but some spectacular landscapes.
I tried to capture it for blog readers but as ever it only gives a bit of an impression but have a listen anyway.
The first short film was when I first arrived and you can hear in the distance my first cuckoo of the year. always a special moment.
There is a clear difference in soundscape between the fringe woodlands and the open bog. The next film is dominated by that songster supreme, the skylark.
From the tower I had a bit of a surprise. The long drawn out rattling of a grasshopper warbler. Another Flanders first for the year. It probably won’t stay so close to the boardwalk – to busy – but hopefully will head off to some of the quieter wet bits.
One of the loudest and most abundant singers is the willow warbler. Here is one feeding and singing in a birch right next to the path (excuse the sniff, it was cold!).
And in this short bit of film below is the full chorus – there is a blackbird, willow warbler, some tits , wren and chaffinch all yelling their hearts out.
Meanwhile in the fog there was some hare action, just shadowy wraiths chasing each other about.
And of course while the males makes all of the noise, the females just get on with life much more quietly, this female chaffinch may well have had chicks in a nest nearby.
My annual dawn chorus walk was a good as ever and well worth the effort to get out of bed early. Have you done one yet?