Saturday, 18 December 2010

It was good to get out on my patch again today, however, I didn't get it all my own way, the weather went from cold and frosty - above, to a complete snowstorm 2 hours later - below !

Despite trying to keep going, I had to give up before completing the full patch walk, not because of it being cold, but the snow was just getting everywhere and making my bins useless, plus all the birds had gone into hiding :-)

Above is a photo looking along the Tall hedge that divides the Greenhouses from Migrant alley, on the latter side I had the fortune of seeing no fewer than 7 COMMON SNIPE, a record number for my patch, easily. That, and the BULLFINCH (below, it is in the shot - really!) were about the best sightings of the morning, although the STOCK DOVE (64) that flew over did give me another new species for the month.

By the end of the 2 hour visit I had just 33 species in the notebook, alot of those were flyovers, including a flock of 22 FIELDFARE, and 8 REDWING, as well as ones and two's of SISKIN. A couple of BLACK HEADED GULL and 4 HERRING GULL also went over, and a KESTREL was hunting over at the Lakes area, the water here has now been frozen over since late November, and as a consequence not a single duck has been seen on it, I also still await the first Grey Heron of the month!
After abandoning my walk I spent some of the day watching the garden feeders, where I had a nice surprise visitor in the shape of a BRAMBLING (65), the first for December, a great species to have in the garden, it was one of 23 species to use the feeders today, and was the 29th species to visit the garden this month, which is a new December record, beating last years 27 by 2 :-)
Other notable species were - GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, COAL TIT, NUTHATCH, SONGTHRUSH, SPARROWHAWK, JAY, and a lone SISKIN, plus the MOORHENS which have now increased to 3 in number, they enjoyed feasting on a stinking lump of brie cheese that I ''rescued'' from yesterdays staff party ;-)

Below is the Brambling

.....and this is it leaving, after being scared off by the Sparrowhawk !


Stewart said...

I see what you mean about the Bully Warren ;)

The Early Birder said...

Pretty grim here today Warren but at least you had some compensation from the garden visitors.

Anthony Miners said...

Very Nice Brambling shots.

Derek Faulkner said...

Not much waste from the staff party then, one bit of manky cheese.
I was on the Swale NNR at dawn this morning in -4 degrees and very little about except 6 wildfowlers who had no compassion at all for the few ducks flying around.

Warren Baker said...

That cheese was an un-opened slab! Does anyone eat brie, my god it stinks - not as much as a wildfowler though :-)

Derek Faulkner said...

As a lover of all cheese I would have no problem with the Brie. I get the feeling that we're heading for a repeat of 1963 with the weather, that year it stayed like this until March and going to work was a nightmare.

Jason K said...

Nice Brambling Warren. Couldnt get around my patch today, completely snowed in :-(

Paul said...

Hi Warren, nice Brambling shot. I was in Hadlow Thursday(along Steers Place)and not once but twice, a male Bullfinch showed itself, I have the camera in the car all ready for such instance's, but just as I raised my camera, the Bullfinch was gone!

Marc Heath said...

Thats a nice Brambling shot in the snow, nice one.

Bob Bushell said...

Well, well, you got the Brambling. Good shooting.

Ken. said...

Hi Warren.
Well done on finding the 7 Snipe, and then a nice bonus of a Brambling with good photo's to go with it.
That was a good species count in your garden today.
I hope you have a good walk on Sunday.

Anonymous said...

You`re still managing to stay ahead of me Warren. Keep at it mate, you could be in for another record month.