What does a Surrey migrant trap look like?


OK, it might not be The Moat at Dungeness, or the Sluice Bushes at Minsmere, but at Canons Farm we have a number of places that seem to attract - and hold - migrant birds on a regular basis. The image above is of the scrub that surrounds the barns behind Canons Farmhouse. If you find yourself here, rest awhile. Keep looking at the Elders and Sycamores. Don't ignore the rank grass and willowherb. Here be migrants! I might be over egging the pudding a bit, but you will most probably see at least Chiffchaff and Blackcap, and recent days has seen a Spotted Flycatcher. And last weekend, in scrub not 200m away (again surrounding old barns) the sites third Sedge Warbler was lurking. Modest fare I know, but acceptable all the same.

There are certain species that seem to appear in the same places each year - Common Redstarts favour the hedgerows along the footpath known as 'Slangs' and most of our Ring Ouzels cannot keep away from the hedgerows and fields to the north of Legal & General. Are they elsewhere on site? Undoubtably, but the incidence of observation at these places would suggest a preference for them.

I have yet to find, at Canons Farm, the favoured area for Wrynecks...


Unknown said…
Is it an actual working farm or a 'wildlife reserve' type farm?

I ask as the farmer/landowner seems pretty accommodating to let birders wander around. Nice chap if so.
Steve Gale said…
It's a working farm Andrew, but blessed with rights of way. We cannot wander wherever we want but can access a great deal of it.

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