Thursday, 28 January 2010

Not so cold today, and the wind had lost its bite, even the sun made the odd attempt to show itself, so it was a more enjoyable walk over to the lake this afternoon.

Walking through the Small Holding, the usual flock of mixed CHAFFINCH and GREENFINCH were seen, and a GREEN WOODPECKER was feeding on a large lawn in a nearby garden, as I rounded the bend on the footpath, this bird confronted me -

It will stand more chance of going on my dinner plate than my patch list!

Through the Wet Woods, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS were heard calling, and a few BLUE and GREAT TITS were about, but nothing else, a SISKIN flew over calling as I neared the Lake area.

Scanning the water was another anticlimax, although a GREY HERON was seen, but just 6 MALLARD remained, with another two dropping in later. I took a walk round the scrubby area and found the expected species of LONG TAILED TIT, TREECREEPER and two GOLDCREST, but as I tried unsuccessfully to sneak up on a Fox, a WOODCOCK flew up in front of me, alighting again not far away, I would love a photo of a Woodcock, but decided against flushing it for a second time, this is the second Woodcock recorded this month, but this year is only the second year I have had woodcock on my patch. I returned to the lake edge, and scanned the sky for a while, this paid dividends, as not only did I have some great views of a KESTREL hunting, but also saw the PEREGRINE go zipping over, just a few minutes later, bird of the day was heard - a TAWNY OWL (65), it hooted twice, just to confirm its place as the 65th species of the year. I'm just 3 species behind last years January record total now, but with only 3 days left it will be hard to find them.

Above is the Grey Heron, and below are a couple of Kestrel shots, not very good i know, but the light was fading fast. :-)


ShySongbird said...

Considering the weather we have had you have done well with your January list and there is still time.

I do like the Heron shot Warren, they look so weird perched on trees!

I hope roast chicken isn't on the menu this evening :)

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Bet you wanted to !
Almost got a duplicate of your hovering Kestrel shot , but for the sun and a Crow .

Sharp by Nature said...

Some good stuff there Warren. Tell you what, I'll keep feral pigeon and you can keep feral chicken!

Chris said...

Hi Warren,
I agree, considering the splendid weather we got, I guess this number of species is just fantastic as the bad weather is probably affecting your sighting!!!
Well done for number 65!!
I finally managed to go out today and got number 36 and 37, a ring-billed gull and a long-tailed ducks (they are at sea)... I have doubt on a female eider and this is under investigation maybe for number 38 ;-)

Sharon said...

Love the Kestrel pics Warren, if you end up just 1 behind or level with last years total are you allowed to include the Chicken then?!

Kelly said...

...I would LOVE to come a cross a chicken on one of my walks. What a surprise. Glad you heard the Tawny Owl and I hope you find those 3 remaining species. (I hope our days become milder soon too. It's 14 degrees F right now here...very cold.)

Anonymous said...

If you don`t get 3 more species in the remaining 3 days, the Tawny Owl will not have been wasted. At least it`s one less for the year list.

Chris said...

Hi Warren,
No chance yesterday... Only got stuck at 36 species, one more which is the long-tailed duck... The ring billed gull I expected to have was indeed a common gull ;-( and the king eider female a simple common eider female.... The afternoon might be really sunny, so maybe I'll take a break from work ;-)

Steve said...

Did you manage to get your bins on the Tawny Owl Warren?