Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Wednesday 29th Feb

10:50 GSE found a pair of Oystercatcher on Sandford Lake, old Tern island, still there 11:10 when I dashed in and out. Oystercatcher is rare in Feb, just 3 other records 1989, 93 & 94. The month finishes on 93 species, adding 11 to the year list, bringing us to an amazing 96 for the year, 5 more than ever recorded by end February.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Tuesday 28th Feb

You wouldn't think Coal Tit would be highlight, but it was, especailly as it was a pair, which is rare anyway and they had obviously just had a bath and were very happy to just slowly dry off in the Blackthorn, only moving an inch or two at a time, allowing me a super rare photo opportunity. Most of the time you only hear them and if you do see them, they are highly mobile...not today.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Sunday 26th Feb

Despite being work party, still managed to pick up singing Nuthatch at the bottom of the car park field, fly over Ring-necked Parakeet too. At LFGP the Redshank flew off, but then flew back over North at 11:20. Bitterns in NW corner, Lavell's and Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers being seen in three locations, 1 heard by me 16:50. Pintail still present too.

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Sat 25th Feb

1 Bittern Lavell's main island, on arrival at 16:30 ,I picked up a dark looking individual but didn't have the legs down on my tripod and was srambling to get Jerry O'Brien's mobile number, so never did scope it.
Moving on to WSL, met Jerry en route, waited ages, saw a Little Egret head North 17:50 and finally glimpsed the dark bird middle right, we headed for the bank behind and watched from about 60 yards, as it climb high into the reeds at around 18:02. Sadly no sign of the other paler bird, which did fly in last night at 18:00, landing far over to the right as viewed from the bank. Definitely 3 birds here again now.

Friday, 24 February 2012

23rd Feb - Lavell's Bittern

Got lucky heading for Bittern hide at 15:43 immediately picking up an adult male Peregrine going fast West to East at 200ft, I was heading for what may be another (third) Bittern was found at Lavell's, probably yesterday's LFGP bird. It showed very well allowing many to capture photos

Thursday, 23 February 2012

23rd Feb

Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker seen by Ray Reedman et al, from section of old Colemans Moor Road, half way between aviation museum and Sandford Mill House.

22nd Feb LFGP

3 Pintail still ranging between LFGP and Sandford and what may prove to be another Bitttern, flew into the small patch of reeds left of Ron's Hide. Later I photographed another gull that looked like a Yellow Legged, marking species 90 for February, 88 in 2008 being the previous highest ever count for that month.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

21st Feb LFGP

A quick visit at 07:30, a spring like feel along the Loddon footpath with many birds in song, Treecreeper and Grey Wagtail near Sandford Mill, a pair of Little Grebe by the storm drain. At Lea Farm G.P. the male Shelduck still present, 20+ Teal, circa 40 Wigeon, 1 Snipe, 50+ Lapwing, plus the Lesser Black Backed Gull with blue ring on it's right leg still about and still unable to get the number, last 2 digits are U1.

Monday, 20 February 2012

20th Jack Snipe Tern Scrape

Steve Day found a Jack Snipe on Tern scrape this afternoon, in company with 15 Common Snipe, it showed well all afternoon, I managed a few average shots with my HTC. How hard is it to get a good shot of a Jack Snipe!?

Gull Sp

Saw this gull on BSL on Friday 17th Feb, this was about the best shot I could get and am not sure what it is?

Friday, 17 February 2012

Last week at Lea Farm G.P. (LFGP)

Forgot to post the 3 Curlew that flew in to roost at 17:10, followed by finally connecting with a Peregrine over East then South at 17:13. Making my year list 91 out of 94, very happy!

17th Feb

3 Pintail flew in from North to Lea Farm G.P. again, so nice to see them still in the area. The sheep farmers were installing new fencing at the North and base of the South ,spit to stop the sheep getting anywhere near the footpath, this is because some idiot keeps cutting the barbed wire fence in the far NW corner.
Up to 7 Snipe along the East bank, were additional to the Tern Scrape 6.
Many resident birds in song now, possible Skylark at the back of the landfill. The 2 Bittern showed very well last night too, am fairly sure the dark bird is a male as he seems to be pursuing the paler bird at dusk.

Friday, 10 February 2012

Lea Farm GP getting most of the birds

Lea Farm G.P. (LFGP) continues to get most of the good birds, 3 Pintail (2m) lingering since 8th Feb. 2 Curlew back, or never left, appearing on the ice 17:00 9th.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Lesson 1 : Get up early

Paying the price of not following rule 1 in patching, get up early and go. 4 Goosander (all redheads) were on the Loddon, then flew to LFGP, where they didn't stay long, flying off at 09:47. (RNM & GSE) I can say I was going for a scan on our baby, but could have been there an hour before, who knows they might not have been there then. There could easily be another.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Monday 6th Feb

A single Ring-necked Parakeet over the car park at 13:30, may have been the first so far this February? It certainly marked 80 species for the month, in just 6 days!
Just 1/3rd of Lea Farm GP is unfrozen, c100 Wigeon, 50+ Teal and a few Shoveler, no Lapwings, or gulls, up to 15 Snipe reported earlier, 8 joined by another 7. 4+ Goldeneye still on BSL, probably more, Wigeon and Gadwall count might be 200 of each, virtually all the Pochard are on BSL. Pretty quiet though and a bit misty, continuing to thaw - 3 degrees.

Fraser'sDPBirding: 2012 already a good start to the year

Fraser'sDPBirding: 2012 already a good start to the year: The park 2012 year list is on 91, mine is 87 and that is as good a start to a year as any ever. With snow and frozen lakes anything could sh...

Sunday, 5 February 2012

2012 already a good start to the year

The park 2012 year list is on 91, mine is 87 and that is as good a start to a year as any ever. With snow and frozen lakes anything could show up. Last week now 2 Bittern WSL and at LFGP Sanderling, Ruff, Dunlin & Golden Plover, this week hot contenders are Goosander, Smew, Pintail & Mediterranean Gull, but I see no reason to dismiss the idea of White-fronted or Bean Geese, Scaup, even a long awaited Great Northern Diver might at least circle BSL. But I'll take a stray Ruddy Duck, Red Crested Pochard, or even better find our first Green-winged Teal, or Ring-necked Duck?
91 species was last recorded at the end of February 2008, during every February we expect to see Redshank, maybe Mandarin, Linnet and I can see us finishing the month near 95.
For me it would be more than wonderful to finally see one of my mythical bogey species, such as Red Breasted Merganser, or a Bewick's Swan, or how about a Marsh Tit?
Best be out early for a change, them sawbills often just fly over without stopping.

Friday, 3 February 2012

More year list additions

Getting Raven at home 31st Jan, then at LFGP 1st Feb was good, despite missing the much rarer Sanderling on Tern scrape. But then last night @ 16:30, a very brief fly over Ruff at LFGP, was a total bonus and then a Woodcock out of the hedgerow brings me to 85 from 89 so far. The cold weather is obviously moving birds now, so I remain hopeful for Golden Plover and maybe a Goosander, or Smew?