Sunday, 22 February 2015

There was a sharp frost this morning, with clear skies and no wind, but it was only a short respite between the wet and windy weather, as more rain spread in for the afternoon.

I used the decent weather to carry out a 5 hour full patch walk, in which I recorded a good tally of 47 species. The early sunshine made for a much more pleasant visit and as I left home there were plenty of birds active, with COLLARED DOVE, CHAFFINCH, GREENFINCH, GOLDFINCH, DUNNOCK, CARRION CROW, JACKDAW, BLUE TIT, BLACKBIRD, ROBIN, HOUSE SPARROW, MAGPIE, STARLING and WOODPIGEON all being seen or heard in the 200m walk along Ashes Lane.

Crossing the Ashes Lane Field there were a pair of SKYLARKS singing above the unimproved grassland there, as there was last spring, not a place for them to breed though, as the management here is not wildlife friendly, also there was a dozen FIELDFARE and a pair of MISTLEHRUSH on the sheep pasture part of the fields, plus I saw a pair of BUZZARDS fly from a lone Oak, then into the Wet Woods, where I found my first of 6 GOLDCREST for the day.

On the lakes today it was all change from yesterday, with 12 CANADA GEESE visiting, plus a trio of GOOSANDER, one being a superb male. I got some very distant shots of them and cropped them down for the blog   :-)



Canada Geese 

The adjacent Scrubby Woods was given a good searching through, where I found more Goldcrest, a singing COAL TIT, 4 BULLFINCH, a calling NUTHATCH, GREAT SPOTTED WOODPECKERS drumming and GREEN WOODPECKERS ''yaffling'' , but Treecreeper, Long Tailed Tit and Jay all went unseen, as they did all morning in fact.

The arable and bean fields off High House Lane had more Fieldfare on them, around 100 birds in all, with just a few REDWING scattered among them. Lone YELLOWHAMMER, MEADOW PIPIT and PIED WAGTAIL flew over as I made my way to the Greenhouse Copse, where the expected LITTLE OWL sat waiting, I thought about getting a few shots of it using my new camera, but I couldn't get a clear view of it, so left it in peace  :-)

The Greenhouse Grounds was home, as usual to the KESTREL pair, but I also found the first SONGTHRUSHES of the morning, as well as a PHEASANT.

Migrant Alley was brimming with BLACK HEADED GULLS, there were at least 200 on the paddocks and sheep pasture, a long scan through them could only produce two COMMON GULL with them though. As I was scanning through them I heard a TAWNY OWL call, it sounded like it came from the Wet Woods some 300 meters away, such was the stillness of the air this morning  :-)

A bit of a skywatch was had, but I only added HERRING GULL and CORMORANT to the list, two of which went over together, plus this STOCK DOVE that I snapped as it whizzed past. I took a few more images this morning, experimenting with the 7D MKii, i'll post them up tomorrow.
 Stock Dove / Feral Pigeon ?


Marc Heath said...

Nice Goosander shots, pretty sure I had 2 males fly over Nethergong this morning, a new bird for me there but need to check up on it in flight first.

Marianne said...

Corking Goosanders! IMHO you have a Feral Pigeon rather than a Stock Dove there, it's very orange of eye, grey of bill and white of armpit...!

Warren Baker said...

I was thinking the same, just needed convincing either way :-)

Warren Baker said...

There are a lot of 'em about this winter ( though the ones I get are probably the same!)

Gravel Pit Birder said...

Warren, fine pictures as usual. New camera or not your photos are to be admired. Though I may be forced to come over with a bag and nab a Goosander for the it possible you could show them a map!? Its not far as flies...

Pete Woodruff said...

Forecast looking too mixed for my liking this week with plenty of wet and windy stuff to come.

I'm in the Feral Pigeon camp Warren.

Warren Baker said...

Maybe we could set up a few 'exchange' visits .....Goosander to you, Wigeon, shoveler to me :-)