Saturday, 19 November 2011

Foggy Morning
It seemed to take an age for it to get light this morning, and it was gone 07:00hrs before I set out into the foggy conditions. The reduced visibility made finding the birds a bit frustrating, and at the end of the 3 hour full patch walk, just 38 species were noted, with some notable omissions, such as House Sparrow, Starling, or any sort of Raptor species.

I made an early visit to the Lakes and Scrubby Woods, in the hope of finding something exciting on the lakes, but it was down to just MALLARD and MOORHENS again,on the way however, as I passed through the Small Holding a LITTLE OWL was seen perched up in one of the old holey pear trees, also, flyovers from LESSER REDPOLL, SISKIN, and more excitingly ( for me!)  my first BRAMBLING (63) of November, I didn't see any of them but their calls were heard as I passed through the dripping trees of the Wet Woods. Around the lakeside vegetation, and into the Scrubby Woods, some, but not all of the regular species were noted, most of them feeding in a loose flock, containing LONG TAILED TIT, , GOLDCREST, NUTHATCH, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, CHAFFINCH, and both BLUE and GREAT TIT, no sign of a Treecreeper today, or a Coal Tit. JAYS and BULLFINCH'S called from the murk, and a PHEASANT was seen under the garden feeders of the nearby house.

I made my way over to the College Grounds, via the Tree Nursery and Pub Field, where the fog was at its worst, the likes of MEADOW PIPIT, YELLOWHAMMER, SKYLARK, and PIED WAGTAIL were all heard but unseen, as they went over somewhere in the fog, but probably the bird of the visit for me was seen in the hedgerow dividing the Tree Nursery and Pub Field, a CHIFFCHAFF (64), nice to see one of the many overwintering ones that now stay with us.

After getting home again and having a good breakfast, the fog had lifted into broken low cloud, and some sunshine peeked through, so I went back out through the Tree Nursery, along the Pub Field and over to my seat at Migrant Alley, I could now see all of the 52 BLACKHEADED GULLS on the Pub Field, and also 2 LAPWING that were there, plus at last I located some HOUSE SPARROWS in the hedge of a nearby large garden.Over on the sheep pasture at Migrant Alley, it was now clear enough to see some STARLINGS feeding, and a KESTREL hunting over the paddocks, from my skywatching seat I picked up 4 STOCK DOVES going over, and incredibly, I heard then saw 3 CROSSBILL flying over, my fourth record of this species in ten years, all of them being in the last 24 days!  This brought up the daylist to more respectable 44, however, it was to make 45, shortly later in a sad incident for me  :-(   A SPARROWHAWK came crashing through the tall hedge adjacent to my seat, and grabbed the Robin that often sits watching me, the Sprawk dropped just a meter from my feet, and quickly flew off with my little songster  :-(  Over the last few weeks it had become very acceptable of my presence, and would grab any insects that I disturbed from the grass as I passed, giving me some close up photo's of it.........you can pay your last respects to him by visiting the post for the 14th November, where you can his photograph :-)

So after an unpromising foggy start to the day, that ended in tragedy for my mate Robin, I at least manged to get two more species on this Novembers list, making it the 3rd best out of the ten, still 4 behind top spot though!
 I only manged the photo at the top of the page this morning, but I got a few from my garden this afternoon, only the same old regulars though!

Starling

one of a pair of Nuthatch that visit

Blue Tit. There is always at least 15 about, so i went a bit mad with these  :-)

Another Blue Tit

Yet another One!

14 comments:

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Seems to be a lot of Crossers about this season Warren.
Here's hoping for another waxwing year too.

Cheers
Davo

Christian said...

Love the composition on the Starling shot Warren.

Phil said...

It's about time I had a Brambling at NH Warren.
Shame about the Robin:-(

Marc Heath said...

Like the Starling shot, something different and it works really well. Down your neck of the woods tomorrow morning early looking for this Blackpoll Warbler.

Bob Bushell said...

Beautiful photos.

Warren Baker said...

Waxwings would be good Dave, I enjoyed seeing them last year 1

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Christian :-)

Warren Baker said...

Keep an ear out for 'em Phil, they are quite disinctive

Warren Baker said...

Marc,
Good luck with the Blackpoll, you'll need it, tomorrow's gonna be another foggy one!

Warren Baker said...

Thanks Bob, Glad you enjoy them.

Jason K said...

Nice one on the Brambling Warren.

elcamperoinquieto.com said...

Nice pisc and as always how lucky with the sparrowhawk!!
Saludos!

Alan Pavey said...

Some really great pics again Warren and well done with the Brambling and late Chiffy :-)

Dean said...

More Crossbills, Warren. You`re doing well for em, of late.