On 30 May i went raptor watching in the New Forest. Acres down is the known best watchpoint. The morning was perfect, clear sky, sun, light breeze. Should have been perfect for honey buzzard. Surprisingly there were goshawks a-plenty over the forest, a lifer and very welcome, but no honey buzzards. There were several cuckoos, siskin and common buzzard.
Around lunchtime I moved to Bishops Dyke where I hoped to see common redstart, quite a common bird but a lifer for me. I wasn't disappointed. Several redstart appeared at the edge of the forest affording good views.
Redstart, Bishops Dyke, New Forest.
The following evening, 31 May and the last day of the month, I went to Chobham Common for nightjar and woodcock. I wanted to bump up my total for the end of the month. As soon as we got to the main clearing of the common I saw the unmistakable sillouette of two roding woodcock. Great!
We moved on to an area where nightjar have been seen in previous years and sure enough we could hear the familiar churring, followed by close views of two or three nightjar. There was a lull. Lynne reminded me of the trick of waving a white handkerchief to make the nightjar think it was a female. I was sceptical but pulled one out and waved it. As if by magic a nightjar appeared and flew straight towards us and over our heads! Amazing! It worked! That evening my end of May total was 193!