I conducted one of my occasional counts of Sparrows in the hedges around Northumberland Heath recreation ground on the afternoon of 28th December, starting a little after 3 p.m. There were about 79 birds, well below the previous record high for this Borough hot-spot for the species.
On the way there 4 were seen on Coniston Road, 16 on Barnehurst Avenue (most in a couple of large Pyracanthas) and 7 on Brook Street between Erith Rd and Mill Rd.
At 16.15 there were only 3 in the Erith School hedge on Avenue Rd, another site with a relatively high count most of the time, so they must be roosting somewhere else.
On 29th December there were 9 House Sparrows in a garden hedge on Coniston Road, 2 in Pyracanthas on Barnehurst Av., several calling out of sight on Northumberland Way and 3 in a Peartree Close hedge. 6 were in a thicket in the ‘pocket park’ by No. 72 Colyers Lane and 4 in a hedge at No. 48. There were 40 House Sparrows and 1 Goldcrest in Erith School hedge at around 13.20. 5 or 6 House Sparrows were in bushes in a garden by North Heath pop-in-parlour on Mill Rd., at least 2 in a small dense hedge at No. 304 Bexley Rd. and at least 4 in a tangled Forsythia at the junction of Barnehurst Av. and Colyers Lane.