In some melodious plot

Having had no luck in finding nightingales in my Booker square, I was pleased to see on the Bucks Bird blog that there had for many days been a nightingale singing near Bledlow, and the blog gave an idea of how to find him.

So on 12 May at about 5pm, I set off as instructed across the field of oilseed rape to the railway line, and then to the damp corner opposite the cricket pitch.  It was hardly a ‘melodious plot of beechen green’, but a rough, scrubby area, where the steam train chuffs between Chinnor and Princes Risborough.

When I was there, not only was the steam train passing to and fro but there was a cricket match.  Not, I thought, the best conditions for hearing a nightingale.

The nightingale’s patch

A song thrush was calling repetitively in a nightingale-like way, making me wonder if there’d been some mistake, but I should have had more faith in the Bucks Bird blog.  For after a while there was a sudden, loud burst of song which was clearly a nightingale.  He sang on and on; perhaps the thrush had heard him so often it was mimicking him.  Then the nightingale came out of the scrub and onto the bush and I had a wonderful sighting for many minutes.

The nightingale was singing on the bush in the middle distance.

When at last he stopped singing I crept away.  Shortly after the train came back again, covering the nightingale’s patch with steam.  But I guess he doesn’t mind.

The steam train passes the nightingale’s patch

This will go down as one of my most memorable bird experiences.  I have only once before heard a nightingale and was thrilled to find one so close to home in Bucks.  He may not be singing in my Booker square, but he’s certainly singing in Bledlow square.


About campaignerkate

I am the general secretary of the Open Spaces Society and I campaign for public access, paths and open spaces in town and country.
This entry was posted in Birds, British Trust for Ornithology, Bucks, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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