Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Another cold and gloomy afternoon!
Once home from work today, I sat and ate my lunch while at the same time watching the garden feeders, where the likes of LONG TAILED TIT, COAL TIT, NUTHATCH, SISKIN, GREEN and GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKER, JAY as well as all the the more commoner birds were also having lunch. I was very tempted to stay in and watch the garden birds, who knows maybe my first Brambling of the year would show up - and it was very dull, cold and gloomy outside, but my obsessive nature got the best of me, and off I went to check the lakes again!

I went via the Tree Nursery, so as to avoid most of the mud, here I saw the KESTREL up hunting, and a few SONGTHRUSHES, but little else. Walking the footpath to the lakes a pair of GOLDCREST allowed close approach, pity it was too dark for the camera today. My first glimpse of the smaller lake allowed me to see some CANADA GEESE and on approaching closer I counted eleven, but with them was the first GREYLAG GOOSE (56) of the month, so it was worth the visit after all   :-)  I next scanned the main lake, which at first seemed devoid of anything, but out from the overhanging branches swam three lovely female GOOSANDERS (70,57) Now you can see why I try to visit here everyday in the winter months  ;-)  If I had stayed in I could have missed this fantastic patch species, not only for this month but perhaps the whole year, they don't show up too often! Also on the lakes were just two MALLARDS and the COOT pair.

That bit of excitement spurred me on to have a look around the Wet Woods (extremely wet!) but I was brought back down to earth again by the ghostly silence that I was met with, all I found were two pairs of Mallard.

Not too down hearted, I made my way over to Migrant Alley for a look over the sheep pasture, it was empty as I passed through earlier on my way home from work, but now it was full of birds, I counted at least 150 FIELDFARE, 80 STARLING, 60 ROOKS, 3 MISTLE THRUSH and a single REDWING, however just a few minutes later they took to the air as one, the culprit for that being a large female SPARROWHAWK, I left shortly after that, the light was just getting worse and worse, despite there being another hour until sunset. A good visit today though, the Goosander takes the year list to 70, with that and the Greylag Goose the February list moves on to 57, a total achieved in the February's of both 2002 and 2005, but its still the second worse February tally of the 12 years, still two weeks to go yet though  :-)

Nothing for the Camera today again, and the 'blog photo folder' is empty, but here's something from the archives to remind us spring isn't far away  ;-)
Orange Tip Butterfly - just a few more weeks  :-)


Ken. said...

Good on you for deciding to go out and scanning the lakes. Adding 3 female Goosander to your lists is a great achievement, well done.

Warren Baker said...

Cheers Ken,
Gotta keep at it!

Phil said...

Great to get three Goosanders Warren. I've only seen one this winter.

Warren Baker said...

Goosanders are regular, but at the same time scarce visitors here phil, I may get just one sighting for the year, or I may get multiple sightings over the winter period.

Stephen Mills said...

A great tick with the three Goosander today. There was also a single Redhead on Furnace Pond this morning.

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Goosanders again warren - nice going. Not seen one yet this year but haven't been anywhere where they are likely to be found.

ShySongbird said...

Hi Warren, How lovely to see the butterfly pop up on my sidebar, so cheerful and promising on a day when we still have snow on the ground and more forecast for tomorrow.

Very well done on the Goosanders, what a good job you went in the end :-)

Warren Baker said...

Its always a real treat to get a Goosander or two :-)

Warren Baker said...

I dare say you'll pick one up soon :-)

Warren Baker said...

Warner weather on the way later this week, not sure it will be butterfly weather though :-)

Jeremy said...

Great shot of the Orange Tip. Won't be long before they'll be fluttering around. Roll on Spring!

Greenie said...

Warren ,
Nice one , or should that be three , with the redheads .