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

Great Skua 2 October

After several circuits over the beach the skua flew strongly north
in the direction of the RSPB Reserve

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Great Skua 2 October

With sea passage continuing offshore at Holme, a late afternoon visit to Snettisham produced this Great Skua feeding on a gull on the tide-line. Nice to get one on the deck at close quarters. The only drawback was the howling wind buffeting the camera and telescope ! Seawatching at Holme the next day was dissappointing, but the 4th managed to again produce goood views of Great Skuas from the Dunes, with a single more distant Arctic Sua followed by an impressive group of 7 Pomerine Skuas, which included 4 birds with tail Spoons.