Tyn y Cwm  'Small house in the Valley' Holiday Home - Bird watching heaven in tranquil Mid-Wales

Recent Posts

First departures
Plenty of nests and eggs
First Eggs and Cuckoo back
Coming Back
Edward, buntings, bats & frogspawn at last.


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First departures

Lots has been happening, the cuckoo's are going non stop, often two can be heard. The spotted flycatcher has returned only to find its normal nest site has been occupied by house martins which appear to be back in large numbers and making their nests frantically. The spotted flycatcher were seen checking out various other possible sites, even one got trapped in the greenhouse, thankfully I noticed it and released it.
The Pied Wagtails in the summer house fledged safely at the end of last week.

Plenty of nests and eggs

Lovely weather has started lots of activity in the nest boxes. Checked my 29 nest boxes and 21 have some form of use.
11 have eggs, 7 Blue tits, 2 Pied Flycatcher, a Great Tit and Pied Wagtail.
Two nests have sitters so complete. First sign today of the Pied Flycatchers blue eggs with 1 and 2 laid in  2 nests.
A couple of nests seem to have had nothing added in the last few days, others have what seem complete nests constructed in a week, and a couple of  others started in the last two days.

First Eggs and Cuckoo back

First eggs have been laid, 4 Blue tit eggs in a nest box and 4 Pied Wagtails in a nest built on a ledge in the summer house. Checked nest boxes and it seems 7 Pied Flycatcher nests have started, although Blue Tit nests still low this year so far. Whilst sat down watching a nest box a Tawny Owl popped out of a hole in the tree next to me. Not sure who was more surprised at seeing the other. Heard a Cuckoo this morning, always a joy to know they have returned, also heard and saw a Wood warbler in the wood.

Coming Back

It's that great time of year when the migrants return, and with the sunshine over the last few days all seems fine.
Swallows seen here first,14th April, Pied Flycatcher the next day then Redstart later in week. No Cuckoo heard yet, hopefully soon. Nests started being made, Blue Tits so far, but Pied Flycatcher was looking in box today. Pied Wagtail making nest in summer house.
Daffs are lovely, snakeshead fritillary's looking good too..

Edward, buntings, bats & frogspawn at last.

Frog spawn finally arrived on 22nd March. The frogs were active but twice they got hit back by the cold spells this month. The latest we have ever had to wait for frog spawn, since we have been here.
A couple of firsts were seeing a brown long eared bat in one of the barns, hanging onto a beam. Then a bunting on the bird feeders, I think a Reed Bunting. Also have had long tailed tits and a redpoll on the feeders occasionally. Sadly the chickens were attacked and four killed, including Charlie our cock bird.

Nest Boxes and Bats

Nest box time again, some of my original ones must have been out for around 14 years, and despite some running repairs have had their day. 3 definitely need replacing so hopefully there will be 3 extra ones this year. They have been painted since the photo and have added a slate lid to improve weather proof ability.
Birds galore on the feeders and the marsh tit is now a daily visitor, but have never seen more than 1 at any time, but surely there most be. Redpoll seen again this year and spotted a treecreeper whilst in the lower garden this week.

Winter is Coming

Strong winds and the first frost tell us summer is now well behind us. 
We actually have had a week away in the sun of Spain, only to return to find the runner bean arch and a tree peony had been blown over. The archway which had been in place since the start of our garden on 2003 has served us very well, but there has been a feeling it had shaded parts of the garden over much, so perhaps the opportunity now to see if it improves things with it gone. Next year will use poles in wig wags for the beans.

Nearly all fledged

Been a while since the last update and a lot has happened, the blue tits have fledged, but sadly one nest didn't, I found all 11 chicks dead inside, so presumably the parents were killed. The redstart nest was quickly made, 6 eggs laid. The box just behind the summer house gave us wonderful sightings of the parents daily. Now all fledged too, and before the pied flycatchers, which have just started, 2 nests gone, 3 still to go.
Pete the bird ringer has been down from the north to ring the pied flycatchers, and has stated this is the earliest date he has had to ring them in all his 42years of ringing, an interesting fact.

Blue Tits hatched

Blue tits have hatched over the past week, four nests, although the other two are a worry. One I'm sure has been abandoned for some reason, 5 eggs were laid, but nothing now for 3 weeks. The other has 11 eggs, and there was a sitter on them until recently. But it is the nest that had the first egg, so I would have expected them to hatch with the others.
The 5 Pied Flycatcher nests all seem complete now with 6 or 7 eggs and all had the female sitting on them.
Still not heard a wood warbler in the wood, however the cuckoo is a daily sound these days.

Plenty of birds and eggs too

Several different birds seen this week, not seen commonly by us, Blackcap, Green Woodpecker and Goldcrest. All in garden or very nearby. Also glad to have regular sightings of Greenfinch.
Nest boxes getting occupied, six Blue tits, possibly five Pied Flycatchers and a Redstart. Seen a little early this year, so hopefuuy still time for more to start nests. Three blue Tits already sitting on eggs, and first Pied Flycatcher egg seen on 6th May, again slightly earlier than previous years.Became aware of the Redstart nest being started on the 3rd and by the 6th, fully built and two eggs.
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