Monday, 6 February 2012

This afternoon, after work, I didn't visit the lakes as I usually do in winter, as I knew they would be frozen up with little to see there, instead I repeated yesterdays walk, over to the Greenhouse Complex, through the Greenhouse Copse, along the drainage Ditch,  round one of the sheep pasture fields, then back to my seat for a skywatch.

This proved to be a profitable decision, as some nice birds were seen. Entering the Greenhouse Grounds, the regular WREN and DUNNOCK were seen, both in the same bush in fact, having a good preen  :-)
Also seen was a GREEN WOODPECKER and the KESTREL, which never lets me within 60m of it for a photograph! Walking to the Greenhouse Copse a COMMON GULL flew over, allowing for a distant photo.

Adult Common Gull
A GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER drummed from the Greenhouse Copse, and a couple of SONGTHRUSHES were seen, plus the usual GREAT and BLUE TITS. Coming out of the Copse I walked the drainage ditch where 2 COMMON SNIPE were flushed up, I watched them wheel away over the Greenhouses to find another safe hide-out. Walking around the sheep pasture a ROOK flew over, which I took a snap shot of, as did a first winter Common Gull, which also got it's photo taken  :-) better still, I heard my first LITTLE OWL (65,58) of the year calling from the Copse I had just passed through, then another answered it's call from a line of trees just off my patch, amazing how their calls carry.
1st Winter Common Gull
1st Winter Common Gull
I made it to my seat, which was now free of snow, as a rapid thaw had set in this afternoon, and watched the sky for an hour, recording a flock 5 LESSER REDPOLL, a single LAPWING, a flock 7 SKYLARKS, with a more heard but unseen, and also, heard but unseen was a  FIELDFARE. The sighting of the afternoon though was that of 6 GOOSANDER (66, 59) flying over, 5 males and a female - fantastic year tick!! Another little treat to visit was a male REED BUNTING, always good to get one of those here, it sat in a bush in the tall hedge by my seat  :-)
Reed Bunting (male)
Reed Bunting (male)
The walk back home along Ashes Lane was not without some action, as a SPARROWHAWK flew over, and the first 20 or so LINNETS (60) of the month were seen alighting in their pre-roost tree, bringing up the 60th species for February. A very nice couple of hours out today!

NEWS FROM YESTERDAY! ( I forgot to say!!) The first HOUSE SPARROW of the year came to the garden feeders, and here he is  :-)
First garden House Sparrow of the year  :-)


Marianne said...

Good stuff, Warren. I love the Common Gull photos especially, beautiful soft light on them (I guess reflected from the snow).

ShySongbird said...

Lovely to see the Wren, Warren I find they skulk around so much that it is difficult to get them on camera.

Nice to see the Reed Bunting on your patch and posing right next to you :-) well done on the Goosanders too, they must have been quite a sight.

Warren Baker said...

The light from the lying snow gives the birds that flyover a different perspective, I love it :-)

Thanks :-) I had quite a good visit today

Jason K said...

What an excellent day Warren. I wouldnt mind adding Common Gull and Goosander to my patch year list!

Phil said...

Some good birds again today Warren, Goosander in particular. Oh to hear an Owl!!

Rohrerbot said...

Two great things in one outing....finally you found your sparrow....and an OWL!!!! Yesterday was a bummer. I found what I was looking for....but I missed an opportunity to spot the Great Horned Owl. It hissed at another bird in trees and it was in a person's backyard!!!! No trespassing and the people weren't home:( Soon I'll find one.

Anonymous said...

At last, a House Spuggy for you.

Gonna be a close run month, this one.

Wilma said...

beautiful gulls in flight.

Alan Pavey said...

Some nice additions to the month and year Warren, Goosander would be such a welcome sight here :-)