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October 2009

1st - A small flock of Golden Plovers flew over this afternoon.

3rd - There were some strong and gusty winds today, peaking firstly around 2 pm as a cold front or trough passed through, and again between 5 pm and 8 pm as pressure began to rise. The earlier cold front also produced some recordable rain, the first since the 6th of September.

6th - Very warm and humid this afternoon, feeling almost tropical with a Dew Point of 17 C. A warm front in the morning brought the warm and moist air, but at 1645 BST a cold front or trough moved through, bringing with it very heavy and at first thundery rain. Indeed one bolt of CG lightning appeared to strike Black Mill and the rumble of thunder which accompanied it was almost instantaneous and very loud. The rain peaked at 108.6 mm/h, a new station record, and in total 26.7 mm was recorded through the day, making it the wettest October day on my records.

7th - At dawn a trio of planets can be seen to the south-east at the moment, with Venus, Mercury, and Saturn all within a short distance of each other.

8th - The Inkcaps have emerged in recent days, this after an absence of a few years.

12th - A fox was seen along St. Giles Croft at dawn this morning. It wasn’t very big so probably a vixen, or maybe a juvenile.

13th - Redwings were heard flying over in quite large numbers this morning, and amongst them I also heard some Skylarks. I had thought I had heard some Redwings yesterday when I was out in the garden during the afternoon.

14th - Visible migration was again heard and witnessed this morning, with lots of thrushes and skylarks again heard. During the afternoon a couple of Redwings were actually seen in the garden, the earliest observation on my records.

15th - A thoroughly dull and damp day with grey skies and general murk.

17th - The Sycamores are now dropping their seeds, and in the last week many trees have begun to noticeably loose leaves.

21st - Recent wind and rain are continuing to bring down the leaves, with Horse Chestnuts, Limes, and exposed Ash’s and Copper Beech’s seeing significant losses. In the garden itself the Swedish Whitebeam and Crab Apple are now largely bare. The weather was particularly dull and damp today, with periods of rain or drizzle throughout. 14.8 mm’s of rain were recorded in total.

22nd - The Virginia Creeper is looking very colourful at the moment, with shades varying from tired green to vivid red.

Huggatewold Wood - On a damp and grey morning we enjoyed a lovely autumn walk through Tundale Wood, which in terms of colour is now very much at its best, with the dominant Beech and Sycamore trees (the Beech in particular) a wonderful coppery to yellow tint. Indeed many of the leaves have already fallen, today’s rain helping in that regard, which means the woodland floor is likewise covered in leaves of many colours and tints, a scene which is undoubtedly pleasing and gentle on the eyes.

27th - Heard some Fieldfares passing overhead today, the first I’ve heard this autumn. The last eight days have been very grey, today being no exception, with just three hours of sunshine being recorded since the 20th. It has been quite mild with it, with night-time lows being well above average for the time of year under the overcast skies.

28th - The recent mild conditions are continuing, the thermometer rising to 16.5 C today with November just days away.

North Cliffe Wood - A lovely autumn walk on a gorgeous golden October day with combination of coppery bracken and the remaining golden birch leaves giving a lovely sepia tint to the afternoon. The Oaks have now begun to turn noticeably since our last visit and though bird and wildlife wise the trip today was largely uneventful, it was nevertheless just a delight to walk through the autumn wood. Out on the heath a fine display of Lepiota Procera (Parasol mushroom) was seen towards the edge of the woodland, and they were very much at there best, with some fully outstretched to well over 15 to 20 cm. Other fungi was also seen, though I couldn’t identify any others than those I recorded last month (see 16th of September).

31st - Lots of thrushes in the garden during the afternoon, including a few Redwings, as they come in to take advantage of the Yewberries, Haws, and Cottoneasterberries. The day had begun very wet, with heavy rain the night before and during the morning producing over 15 mm’s in the gauge.