Heene Cemetery is designated a Sussex Site of Nature Conservation Importance, and is managed as a nature reserve, with consideration for the need to maintain access to the graves and to treat them with due respect. Read why neatness and tidiness do not encourage wildlife, or provide for its needs…

Excerpts from a Blog by devilbirder, Local Birding February 2021, include sightings by David at Heene Cemetery.

February is never a month to shake things up too much but always brings renewed optimism; I think of it as the very start of spring. Over the course of the month, I managed to record 64 species in my new very local patch (basically between Marine Gardens and Heene Cemetery, including my garden).

Marine Gardens offered up 25 species this month. There was nothing particularly unexpected, though Sparrowhawk, Goldcrest and Chaffinch were all nice to see. The latter is a laughably scarce bird locally. Goldfinches and Greenfinches were more obvious than they were in January, and more inclined to burst into song. The new feeding station continued to attract interest from birds and people alike. Strangely, there was no sign of any Coal Tits all month.

Local birding expert devilbirder spotted the Sparrowhawk near Heene Cemetery

Sparrowhawk by Heene Cemetery

Three visits to Heene Cemetery produced 25 species, including Blackcap, Sparrowhawk, Coal Tit and Goldcrest.

Two Ravens on St Botolph’s church pinnacle

Ravens on Botolph’s Church

One calm morning, two Ravens kept watch from the spire of the adjacent Botolph’s Church. I enjoyed three sightings of Raven over my garden over the course of the month, no doubt the same birds. This formerly persecuted corvid has reclaimed most of its former range in the general countryside over the last decade or so, and now it seems they’re moving back into town! 

Similarly, it was a privilege to watch the local pair of Peregrines over my veranda, from which I noted a total of 35 species this month. Early signs of spring migration included small numbers of Siskin and Chaffinch moving east in the last few days. Other garden notables included Redwing, Grey Wagtail and Great Spotted Woodpecker, while as part of my licensed ringing I processed Song Thrush, Robin, Dunnock, House Sparrow, Coal Tit, Blue Tit and Great Tit.


Song Thrush ringed in my garden – devilbirder

Excerpts from a Blog by devilbirder – Local Birding, February 2021, give an insight to birds visiting Heene Cemetery.

Friends of Heene Cemetery have recently met “devilbirder”, who is kindly sharing his knowledge and skills with us. Look out for future articles about birds in Heene Cemetery.

Sue Standing – Chairperson