Just a few observations here.
After my post on October 2nd 2007 (regarding winter Thrushes) I've since heard these birds at night, overhead, pretty well every night. A thin "TSEEP" is the best way to describe the contact call.
I SAW my first flock of winter Thrushes yesterday - a flock of a dozen or so Fieldfare, flying south over the garden, just before dusk, calling to each other as they flew - more of a "CLACK" for Fieldfares.
I know many people in the country, and indeed the county (Berkshire) have seen large numbers of Redwing and Fieldfare arrive already - a flock of approximately 200 Fielfare was seen about 2 miles from our garden only last week.
They shouldn't go short of food during their sojourn in th UK this winter, what with the huge berry crop this year (thanks, in part, to all the rain we've had).
I've noted also, that whilst we haven't seen the Goldfinches at the feeder for months now (well, not more than once or twice, anyway), the level of seeds has been slowly dropping over the past week or so.
Today, I found out why.
A group of House Sparrows (maybe half a dozen or so) flew in from their old nesting territory (2 houses down the road) at 8am this morning, and raided the feeder. The Goldfinches are sure to be back though, when their natural food supply quite literally dries up, in a month or two.
Not many Bumblebees around now. A few Common Carder Bumblebees (the latest flying of all our Bumblebees) have been spotted across the country (like mine that took a nap in the Bindweed last week) and a few Common or White-tailed Bumblebees but thats about it. The rest are either dead, or in their underground nests for the winter.
Again. Most of these are either in hibernation / overwintering mode, or dead. There are however a few Red Admiral fluttering about that I've seen recently, and again, these are one of the latest (and earliest) flying of our native butterflies, so no real surprise there.