Wednesday, 7 January 2009

This afternoons walk home from work, saw Migrant Alley still iced over, and just a few LAPWING, STARLING, and BLCKHEADED GULL were seen. Once home, I ate my lunch , and watched the busy feeders, whilst deciding what part of my patch would be best to visit - I decided to do a walk of the wet woods, then on to the lake and cut back through the tree nursery. As I entered the woods I had Lesser Spotted woodpecker on my mind, I do get the odd one here in the winter, but not today. However, there was a small flock of mixed passerines found, including at least 2 TREECREEPER, 2 NUTHATCH, both the MARSH TITS, a GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, and the usual BLUE and GREAT TITS. Once I had passed this flock, the rest of the woods was silent. A brief scan scan of the lake, mainly to see if there was any sign of it thawing - there wasn't - but a KESTREL flew low over as I was photographing the ice.
I walked into the tree nursery, and all was quiet, even the Green Woodpeckers had stopped ''yaffling'' ! Then, to rescue a visit that wood have gone down as one of the dullest on record, a high pitched call came from the low tangle of bramble and small Laurel bushes, a 'Crest' I thought, so I stopped an scanned the tangle, and Wow! A FIRECREST (59), I thought it would be a long wait before I recorded another of these, as I had only seen one last month - or was this the same bird ? It was about 50yds from place where I last saw one, and had not seen a sniff of it since (22nd Dec). I must have waited half an hour trying to get a photo of it, and despite it feeding almost around my feet at times, it wouldn't stay still, or come out fully into the open.This is the kind of rareity I'm going to need, if i'm going to beat the record 106 species seen last year!
Someone up there must have felt sorry for me today, seeing me out in the gloom, and cold, and decided that a Firecrest was not the only treat I deserved, for as I left the little fellow, a SNIPE (60), flew low over my head, making a low squawk as it flew away and round to the SW. This is another good species for my patch, it's not recorded every year, it's nice to get it at the beginning of the year rather than desperately trying to find one at the end of it! As the evening drew in at 3:45, the LINNET flock came in to roost, settling in the surrounding trees waiting to drop into the dense Laurel bushes. I counted at least 120 birds, but i'm not sure they were all Linnets, however. The flock was not approachable, and all I got were silhouette's.
Another day to remember on my patch, - Eventually!!


Above and below. A stunning gem of a bird, Firecrest! I'm afraid my photo's do it very little justice.

Below: The lake, encased in ice - no good for ducks, geese, Kingfishers or anyting really, I need the latter two if i'm going to set a new january record species total !


Below is some the Linnet flock, I think most of them are Linnets, but there could be other things in there! I tried enlarging the image, but it doesn't help
Last of all - well, if I can post a blurry firecrest, I might as well post a blurry Treecreeper as well !





12 comments:

Dean said...

And the ticks just keep on coming. Could well be a year to beat last year`s record. Keep at it, Warren.

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Believe me , your Firecrest shots do it a lot more justice than mine at New Hythe .
But just seeing one was great for me .
60 on the 7th. they just keep coming . Well done .

Stewart said...

Any photo is better than none Warren. That looks like a nice bright Firecrest. Very nice indeed.

Steve said...

Nice one Warren. Keep an eye out for Jack Snipe....2 recorded at New Hythe (grrrrr, by others!) so chances are you'll find one.

Adam said...

If you shake your head rapidly side to side then then become 'unblurred'! Seroiusly I think they're great record shots and that Firecrest looks a lot brighter and well-marked than the ones I saw at New Hythe on Sunday. Well done.

Adam

Warren Baker said...

Thanks for all the comments blog people!
Hope you all find some cool birds this year. I think I may be peaking a bit early !!

fishing guy said...

Warren: Looks like the Firecrest is the size of out Black-capped Chickadee.

Steve said...

Looks like a good day again. At least you've seen Firecrests this year! I'm still blank!

Ken said...

Hi Warren. I think our fellow bloggers have said it all.Not a bad day birding.

Ken said...

You are certainly clocking up the species

Simon said...

Great stuff Warren. At least you managed to get some shots of the Firecrest!

lee said...

congrats on your firecrest Warren theirs been a lot of snipe and jack snipe flying through the valley this week