Sunday, 12 April 2015

Another day at Dunge

I  visited Dungeness today with my good lady and before we'd got out of the car she'd found a cracking Black Redstart which gave me a nice opportunity to grab one or two shots as it sat on the sea wall next to the car park. We made the short walk to the hide and enjoyed a bit of a sea watch as Suzanne sheltered from the wind and Tia (the dog) enjoyed a run on the shingle. At sea we found a few Porpoise and Great Crested Grebes and watched as Brent Geese flew east and a both Sandwich and Common Tern flew towards the patch.

Black Redstart
Black Redstart

Black Redstart
Black Redstart
Black Redstart
A walk around the moat and lighthouse garden delivered Chiffchaff and Willow Warbler and another two Black Redstart. Back at the reserve and we had a couple of Swallows and Sedge Warbler before a  Raven came close along the Gully in Denemarsh Road. We then drove across to Reculver where we enjoyed good views of four Ring Ouzels in the old caravan park.

Ring Ouzel
A brief drive along the track at Elmley resulted in the usual birds along with a single Snipe.

Little Egret
Little Egret
Little Egret
A nice day out with my girls and six year ticks to boot.

Year list now at 196

Saturday, 11 April 2015

The week that was

Having returned from Scotland on Monday I made the relatively short trip to Lidlington in Bedfordshire where the recent press given to the "last Lady Amherst's Pheasant" had finally caught my imagination and although the prospect of seeing/ticking this introduced species as it finally meets it's final frontier didn't fill me with delight I found myself caught up in the hype and after a more interesting visit to the Lodge in Sandy where I located firstly three Lesser Redpoll and then a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker before hearing a day calling Tawny Owl I made the short trip across to Lidlington where I parked outside the pub and walked down the hill turning right to walk up to the churchyard (opposite the church) The message online said turn right at the rear of the church yard then 200 yards what it didn't say was it was a bit of a climb to the viewing area. I arrived with several birders present and joined the silent stand staring at the feeder that the land owners have erected in an effort to get people to view from a specific spot and cause less disturbance to the site. (For the record the security guards on site say that there are at least two birds)
We watched intently and eventually had the briefest of glimpses as the bird walked across the top of the ridge revealing just a head and tail feather. (Some got on it some to their frustration didn't)  I couldn't help think that the whole thing had been a little bit disappointing, the atmosphere wasn't great and the bird didn't show that well either. If all twitches went this way you wouldn't bother with them at all.

Osprey at Eversholt Lake
So with the tick in the bag so to speak I returned down the M1 and through myself into work with early mornings and late nights my penalty for taking a long weekend until today when I strangely decided I'd run the Jims back to Lidlington so they too could "enjoy" the bird.
Three hours of nothing followed with just light relief from first a fly over House Martin then a calling Willow Warbler and then a Redstart in the fields by the churchyard on our way out. My companions then wanted to visit Eversholt as Lesser Spotted Woodpecker had been reported there so we headed that way only to find an Osprey sitting in a tree there. We enjoyed watching the Osprey (Had a metal ring on the left left and blue ring on the right if that means anything to somebody?) and had a nice display from both Buzzard and Red Kite as we walked back to the car. No sign of Lesser Spot though and a possible Ouzel went missing on me so remained just possible.

Year list now 190 Life list now 356

Thursday, 9 April 2015

A little bit of Scotland

The Cairngorms
The Findhorn Valley
Laggan Dam
Loch Garten
If you've not been what are you waiting for.......get up there!



Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Red Grouse at Lochindorb

White-tailed Sea Eagle Scotland

Images of the Sea Eagle taken on our recent Scotland trip.

Not the sharpest shots I've taken but what a bird.

Harlequin duck at Seaton Park Aberdeen

A few images of the Harlequin Duck at Seaton Park Aberdeen. Seen on our recent trip to Scotland

Harlequin Duck (1st winter drake)
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Duck
Harlequin Ducks are usually found in North America, Iceland, Greenland and Western Russia
This bird is thought to be Britains 19th record although a 20th has also been present at Bora in the Highlands this winter.  The first recorded Harlequin Duck in Britain was back in 1862, this bird was found dead and is now in the Mansfield museum.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Scotland images

See the previous post for a brief summary trip report on our recent four day tour of Scotland.
This page is reserved just for some of the images from the visit.

Glen Nevis (check out the people on the top)
Crested Tit
White-tailed Sea Eagle
Sea Eagle being mobbed by a hawk
Eider Ducks
Harlequin Duck
Hooded Crow
Coal Tit
Black Grouse
Black Guillemot

Red Grouse
Red Deer
Distant but these are a pair of Golden Eagles