Friday, 9 December 2016

A Different Blip

This blip is warm weather.....bleurgh!

0915 - 1125 cloudy, some sun, warm but cool SW f2-3

What to report...a Snipe on the west pit...though just about everything still remains on the west pit....a few Wigeon and Teal have moved to island pit (that will be the pit with the island in)....a few more Pochard were around today....and probably the highlight was a Common Gull....

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

Blip....

A few days of shivering yer wotsits off and the British weather does what the British weather does...with the media promoting yet another 'arctic conditions' on the way....its turned out nice again....

The Goldfinches that turned up on my feeders yesterday have now disappeared.....

In the meantime.....off to the pits for a look...

0915 - 1130 cloudy, sunny, cool to warm SW f2-4

Still a majority of the birds are on the western pit...but it seems they are now moving east with a few more on the pits to the east....its virtually standing room only on the western pit....!!

So...here we go....

113 Black-headed Gull, 1 Herring Gull, 2 Common Gull, 8 Mallard, 22 Tufted Duck, 229 Coot, 1 Pochard, 7 Teal, 2 Grey Heron, 7 Mute Swan, 20 Shoveler, 123 Gadwall, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Little Grebe, 8 Cormorant, 4 Moorhen, 2 Canada Geese, 24 Wigeon, 2 Snipe, 1 Water Ral, 54 Lapwing, 1 Kingfisher.

Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Song Thrush, Kestrel, Jay, Blue Tit, Robin, Chaffinch, Feral Pigeon, 3 Buzzard, Crow, Green Woodpecker Jackdaw, Skylark, Goldcrest, Wren, Fieldfare, Stock Dove, Reed Bunting, 2 Merlin, Starling, Bullfinch, Magpie, Treecreeper Goldfinch, Meadow Pipit.

Friday, 25 November 2016

Getting There....

0910 - 1130 cool, bright, clear, sunny NE f3-5

If you could get out of the wind it was reasonably warm....but the opportunities to do so were few...so mostly it was quite cool....

However...not cool enough to stop a Chiffchaff from being here....still.....other than that...

Pied Wagtail, Woodpigeon, Blackbird, Magpie, Magpie, Green Woodpecker, Bullfinch, Crow, Wren, Skylark, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Robin, Yellowhammer, Reed Bunting, Jay, Stock Dove, Starling, Long Tail Tit, Goldcrest, Feral Pigeon, Buzzard.

2 Moorhen, 47 Tufted Duck, 22 Shoveler, 183 Coot, 17 Wigeon, 2 Grey Heron, 26 Mute Swan, 1 Whooper Swan, 12 Pochard, 6 Teal, 91 Gadwall, 15 Cormorant, 6 Great Crested Grebe, 5 Little Grebe, 1 Canada Goose, 51 Black-headed Gull.

Saturday, 19 November 2016

Ring-a-ding

0530 - 0930 frosty...cold....winter ringing weather....huzzah

Out of the door....frosty...scrape the screen....off to the orchard....at last...first ringing session of the winter period....later than usual due mostly to the lateness of the ripening of the Braeburns.....

First Redwings and solitary Fieldfare ringed....



Apologies about the photos...pretty poor quality....birds wouldn't sit still...still dim and not really that light....and using my phone....well, that's my excuse anyway....must remember the camera next time...

Also caught a number of Goldcrest...one of which I ringed last year around this time so it hasn't been far...possibly the other side of the orchard!

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

What the...?

0920 - 1200 sunny, some cloud, cool, WSW f2-4

To think, ten days ago I went ringing and couldn't open the nets as they were frozen shut...today...back to jumpers and shorts....well...for the school run anyway....amazing, very mild now....

But....a visit was in order....so I met DH on site and we meandered around to see what we could see...and this....is what we saw....

Pied Wagtail, Crow, Chaffinch, Blackbird, Feral Pigeon, Magpie, Green Woodpecker, Wren, Kestrel, Goldcrest, Bullfinch, Great Tit, Robin, Jay, Goldfinch, Meadow Pipit, Starling, Reed Bunting, Jackdaw, Blue Tit, Chiffchaff, Fieldfare, Buzzard....

....and on the water....

Back-headed Gull, Common Gull, Mallard, Grey Heron, Coot, Shoveler, Tufted Duck, Gadwall, Great Crested Grebe, Pochrd, 34 Mute Swan, Canada Goose, 1 Whooper Swan, Wigeon, Cormorant...

Sunday, 13 November 2016

One whoop-whooper...and more...

0630 - 0940 clear, quite cool, cloud forming NW f2 occasionally 3

WeBS again.  November already....and waiting for the elusive bird that shall not be named...begins with W....no...not Whooper Swan....that's already here....and one of the juveniles was still present today...which I was hoping for so I could get it on the WeBS count....

As forecast the weather was nice...a bit cool, but nothing unexpected.  Thankfully the rain from yesterday had gone....

...after the rain the 'puddles' area near the quarry has flooded already...
.....a good area to see Mandarin Duck and Grey Wagtail over the winter period....

Three Oaks...two well under way with autumn...
...the third....reluctant....

Now that the access via the gate by the road is unusable....constant moaning by a local has seen to this....so now its via the footpath around 300m further along the road, which is a bit tedious as birding the driveway in could be rewarding and also allowed views across some fields....now via the footpath this means doubling back to do this....anyway, onward....

So...what was around today...on the water...

19 Mallard, 19 Wigeon, 5 Little Grebe, 4 Great Crested Grebe,  5 Cormorant, 20 Tufted Duck, 1 Pochard, 2 Teal, 233 Coot, 6 Moorhen, 3 Grey Heron, 1 Mandarin Duck, 59 Gadwall, 6 Shoveler, 2 Herring Gull, 91 Black-headed Gull, 1 Common Gull, 1 Snipe, 11 Canada Geese, 36 Mute Swan....

...the water highlights....

....1 Whooper Swan, 1 Kingfisher, 2 Goosander, 2 Water Rail...



Goosander...or Common Merganser...Mergus merganser, male and female

This is the second record for Goosander.......and the number of Mute Swans, 36, is the highest I have seen at the pits at any time....

Meantime, on land....

Goldcrest, Woodpigeon, Fieldfare, Buzzard, Robin, Blackbird, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Magpie, Kestrel, Wren, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, 2 Chiffchaff, Blue Tit, Jackdaw, Great Tit, Stock Dove, Bullfinch, Starling, Crow, Cettis Warbler, Green Woodpecker, Redwing....

Redwing, Turdus iliacus

...Jay, Skylark, Reed Bunting, 25+ Meadow Pipit, Pied Wagtail, Long-tailed Tit, Feral Pigeon.

This is the largest number of Meadow Pipits I have seen at the pits....last winter there was a group of about 10 or so hanging around the quarry area...

...and whats going on with Cettis Warbler....the second record for the site for me....it sang just once, very much like last time...just the once.  I'm amazed there isn't a breeding and over wintering population here as its quite ideal.....lots of scrub/Willow around the water with plenty of reed fringe...

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

...whoop-whooper!!

1100 - 1230 cold, sunny becoming overcast, SW f2

With Autumn finally having arrived and the weather seemingly declining toward more wintery, the winter visitors should be increasing......so it was great to see Bewick Swan reported at the pits....though not by me.....with this in mind I finally had a bit of time to pop in to take a look and see if anything was going on....

I reckon around 95% of the water birds are now on the western most pit....a number of Black-headed Gull are on the next largest pit east and its where the Common Gull is at the moment.  But for whatever reason...the western most pit seems to have the big attraction....

Hoping to get a new bird for the site list I was quite excited to find....

Whooper Swan juvenile, Cygnus cygnus

In fact, I found 2 Whooper Swans....excellent.  The one in the picture is the whiter of the two....its possible this means it is an Icelandic bird as they are whiter when juvenile.  The other duller/browner bird is possibly more of Russian origin then.  I'm no expert so don't quote me on that!!

Teal numbers have increased and the other ducks are in good numbers....Wigeon, Gadwall, Mallard, Tufted, Pochard...plenty of Little Grebe present as well...

Of interest I flushed 3 Snipe off the main track, there was plenty of thrush action, good numbers of Blackbirds, Fieldfares, Redwings and one Song Thrush.....a Water Rail was heard...