Thursday, 26 November 2009

Leaches Petrel Grafham Water 25 November

Leaches Petrel 25 November.

Having failed to connect with any of the previous inland Petrels Grafham finally produced a result - in dramatic fashion. The bird was watched being taken by a Carrion Crow at close range, but somehow managed to escape/get dropped, only to become caught in a tree as it fell, and was promptly rescued !! On inspection, damage suffered by the Petrel appeared to be superficial and excelent views of the bird were enjoyed in the hand.

Monday, 9 November 2009

4 - 8 November Dungeness and Holme - with a certain shrike in the Middle

A brief visit to Dungeness proved to be something of a Heron and Egret extraveganza - with the Great White Egret pereforming exceptionally well, with a supporting cast of a Cattle Egret, 2 Glossy Ibis, 2 Bitterns and the expected views of Little Egret and Grey Heron.

4 November Great White Egret Dungeness

4 November. The Great White Egret in flight

4 November little Owl Dungeness. 1 of 2 picked out while enjoying excelent views of the Egret

5 November Bewick Swan Dungeness RSPB. 3 of 4 present

5 November Cattle Egret Dungeness RSPB

6 November A rather impressive individual lurking at the Observatory

6 November. Brown Shrike Staines. A convenient detour on route back to Bedford from Dungeness. Also presernt several pairs 0f very noisy Parakeets flying overhead and a Kingfisher doing circuits along the river.

8 November. Holme. The rather special sight of 3 Cettis Warblers together in the hand - processed together in 1 net round, and bringing the total to an unprecedented 26 new birds ringed at the observatory this year.

and then they were gone ....... the moment of release.
The Day had started with a Peregrine at Hunstanton and by the end of the day the Holme area had produced 95 Species, including Black Throated Diver, Velvet Scoter and Red Necked Grebe on the sea, Short Eared Owl Hunting over the Marsh, a Firecrest neasr the Observatory and 3 Lapland Buntings in flight at Thornham Harbour

Monday, 2 November 2009

Shorelarks Holme Beach 30 0ctober

Difficult birds to see in recent years, but 3 present and showing well

Shorelarks on the Beach and a Beardie out of the net

Shorelark Holme 30 October.

Nice to catch up with the 3 birds present after several failed attempts to see the birds at Titchwell. Followed up the next day with a spectacular arrival of thousands of Starlings, and lesser numbers of Blackbirds and thrushes - as well as 3 Bewick Swans and 2 Short Eared Owls coming in off the sea

Bearded Tit Holme 30 October the first ringed at the Observatory since 2004

Redwing Holme 30 0ctober

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Easern Crowned Warbler County Durham 24 October - or you don't actually have to be mad but sometimes it helps ..

Courtesy of the Daily Mail Saturday 24 October - which managed to provide a reasonable summary of the story and get the right picture to illustarate it - something beyond the ability of other tabloids !!

24 October. Behaving as a typical Leaf Warbler does, patience was the order of the day, as the Eastern Crowned warbler - britain's first record - moved among the Sycamores, Elders etc. Excelent views followed - with the Yellow Browed Warbler that was also present allowing a good comparison of size and plumage. No pictures of the bird but a couple of a part of the crowd. and the grey choppy sea in the background. Well worth the 2.30 A.M. start from Snettisham in the hope the bird would still be present, producing a thoroughly enjoyable day, without being drowned in the pouring rain that the forecast had threatened. Showing well all Saturday, many dissappointed birders arrived on the Sunday only to find that the bird had departed overnight.

Harbour Porpoise snettisham Beach 26 October.

Unfortunately found dead washed up on the beach as well as a single Guillemot. Otherwise little to be seen except a handfull of skulking Redwings. After saturday's excursion Sunday was spent at Holme, where a Juivenile Spoonbill provided the excitrement by coming in off the sea and flying almost over our heads !!! We watched it fly over the Pines and virtually over the Observatory before it apparantly carried on flying west

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Redpoll in the hand, Water Voles in the water and a phalarope and sandpiper at Titchwell

Black Headed Gull 19 October

Purple Sandpiper Titchwell - initially feeding with Turnstones on the beach before retreating to the ruin shown above. Sadly no sign of the Shorelarks in the time available to me.

The same Black Headed Gull shown above - convinced there was food on offer if it stayed long enough and close enough!! If it had been a Dog it would have had its paw in the air and its tongue hanging out as it stood begging .....

18 October Water Vole Hun River Holme. Close in views of Pom Skua, Lonmg Tail Duck and Great Northern Diver at Holme in the morning were followed with Grey Phalarope, Purple Sandpiper and Snow Buntings during an afternoon visit to Titchwell

17 October Mealy Redpoll Holme. A nice bird to see in the hand. Seawatching had been productive in the morning - but meant missing the Little Auk that circled the NWT carpark before flying west !!

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Jack Snipe Titchwell 11 October

An evening finale after good but brief views of the rose Coloured Starling at Chosely

Jack Snipe 2 Titchwell RSPB 11 October

Feeding in front of Fen hide.Performjng well in the fading light


Yellow Browed Warbler 14 October - The 3rd to be ringed in 5 days. Also present a Black Redstart on the roof of the Firs and sitting close offshore were both a Summer Plumaged Great Northern Diver and the first Goldeneye of the Autumn. 3 velvet Scoter flew west with a group of 22 Eider on the morning of the13th and an afternoon check of the Dunes produced a great Grey Shrike that was still present at Dusk. Not the first Great Grey I have seen at Holme, but the first 'self-found' one ! A shame it wouldn't pose for the camera. A leaches Petrel picked upp passing the dunes on the 12th was never going to make it onto film, but did stay in view in the scope long enough to enjoy good views as it went through.

Juvenile Rose Coloured Starling Chosely Barns 11 October - the pale blob to the left of the aeriel Dish ! A nice follow on to 2 Short Eared Owls in off the sea and circling over Holme Marsh and another group of 3 velvet Scoter over the Sea

Yellow Browed warbler Holme 10 October. The first of the Autumn, with 2 present on 10th and 12th, and a second bird ringed on the 12th

Common Darter Dragonfly Holme 1o October

Hummingbird Hawkmoth Holme 10 October 1 of 2 present and the only one I have seen this year

Red Admiral Butterfly 10 October

Pink Footed Geese over Redwell Marsh 9 October

Grey partridge Holme 9 October the first to be ringed at the Observatory since 1974

Firecrest Holme 9 October