Friday, 28 December 2007

Potteric Carr, S Yorks - 28th December 2007

Bittern - Potteric Carr Nature Reserve YWT

Above Bittern
Above - Willow Tit, Blue tit
Above - Willow Tit, Great Tit, Reed Bunting
Above - Coal Tit
Above - Great Spotted Woodpecker

The initial plan for the trip was to loook for Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, but ofcourse, when you plan to see one of these birds - you don't see one, and when you dont plan to see one of these birds - you don't see one!
Birds seen were Bittern - A fantastic bird, showing really well just outside the hide overlooking Piper Marsh for at least 20 minutes
Willow Tit - several birds calling around the reserve but only at the feeding station were these birds observed.
Siskin - 100+ birds were moving overhead.
A great day despeit the undesiable weather, due to the fact I had stunning views of Bittern, Feeding, Standing, and even Flying and year ticking Willow Tit

Thursday, 27 December 2007

Lytham Moss, Lancashire - 27th December 2007

Above Bewicks Swan - Lytham Moss
Above - Adult Whooper Swan
Above - 3 Adult Whooper Swan
Above - Female/1stw Stonechat

I have finally managed to see a 2007 Bewicks swan.

Lytham Moss - 54 Whooper Swans(12 juv) 2 Bewicks Swan, 2 Mute Swan, 2 Stonechat, 212 Rook, 31 Jackdaw, 3 Tree Sparrow over, 14 Chaffinch, 68 Black Headed Gull, 31 Curlew, 16 Lapwing, 5 House sparrow.

Ingol - 3 Lesser Redpoll, 98 Siskin

Friday, 21 December 2007

Morning wander - 21st December 2007

A short walk to my personal local tetrad this morning produced mainly finches on the move - icluding 53 Siskin and 41 Chaffinch
In Haighton House Woods, there were lots of groups of c30 tits in each group, these also held Nuthatchs and Goldcrest.
5 great Spots flew overhead and a movement of redwings and Blackbirds was obvious

Saturday, 15 December 2007

Glaucous Gull - Fishmoor Res, Blackburn, Lancs - 15th December 2007

Picture - Glaucous Gull, Fishmoor Res 27/11/07 (kindly donated by Bill Aspin)

Finally! Ive caught up with the Glaucous!

I only saw the bird flying, but what a distinctive bird it was, with flashing pale wings in amongst the Herring and Black Heads. It did not land on the water, it must have flown in from Whinney Hill, saw that the gulls were flying and folowed them onto the roof of the ex Corus building.

A fab bird and a great target lifer.

Sunday, 9 December 2007

East Lancs birding - 9th December 2007

Gulls at Whinney Hill Tip

The view of the Corus Roof at Fishmoor
A Trip to East Lancashire Mid Morning was to catch up with the ever present Glaucous Gull. First a stop at Whinney Hill Tip, off junction 7 of the M65. Here there were quite a lot of Gulls, but noticably more were flying away from the tip. A 45 minutes search amongst the gulls produced only a single Great Black Backed gull. This was the only bird that wasn't indifferent.
I thought there may be a chance that because it was Sunday, and the work on the tip has stopped, there may be a chance it had already gone to the roost. A trip to Fishmoor was in order. Here there were few birds - 75- Black Heads and c30 Herring as well as 5 Lesser Black Backs and a single Great Black Back. Other than Gulls there were 12 Goosander, which suddenly increased from the original 3 in front of our very eyes! Also 2 Reed Bunting and a Kestrel were present off the water.
A trip to the local site of Corus, where the Gulls roost on was to be our final point of call of the day. Here there were c125 lapwing and a varying number of Herring Gulls and 5 Great Black Backed Gulls
An Educational and enjoyable trip, with the additional dissapointment of another White Winged gull dip!

Saturday, 1 December 2007

East Lancashire - 1st December 2007

On arrival at Clowbridge Res I was expecting the bird to be showing reasonably well like the Photo's taken during the week suggest.

It was no until 30 mins stay that I caught my first sight of the bird, in loose association with a Great Crested Grebe, and the difference in size between the two was quite awsome really. A Fabulous adult and a really good inland Lancashire Bird, even at the coast they are pretty special. A nice addition to my Lancashire List.

A stop off at Fishmoor Res on the way home for the gulls produced 1 ad or 2w Med Gull which was with c2000 Black Headed Gulls. Earlier in the week there was a Glaucous Gull which I was hoping for, but with such a strong wind and arriving maybe 30 mins late, I was sure I wasn't going to see it, if ofcourse, it was there at all.

Monday, 26 November 2007

Waddington Fell and Heysham Harbour, Lancs - 26th Novemeber 2007

Waddington Fell

Waddington Fell.
Upon arrival they was little doing with only a couple of singing Male Red Grouse in the Heather. After about 45 minutes we drove up towards Newton and before long I spotted the 1st Winter Great Grey Shrike on the Wires. It moved all the way back up to my original position and at 11.20 it flew across to the Waddington Fell Quarry. A fantastic individual that was a British Lifer.

Heysham Harbour.

Finally! I have seen Mediterannean Gulls at Heysham! No Matter how many times I go to Heysham Harbour I just cannot see Med Gulls! A 2nd Winter and an Adult changed all this. Also a Purple Sandpiper was feeding along the North Harbour Wall whilst the Meds were Patrolling, which is a great Bird for the County, and it's certainly exiting that there are two here and at least 1 further up the coast at Morcambe. 4 Red Breasted Merganser were feeding on the Millpond like sea and the Group of c1200 Knot above put on quite a display.

A Thoroughly Enjoyable day, even though I have just found out that of I had gone to my original location - Scarborough, I may have seen a Desert Wheatear but I dont Care...Meds Rule all!

Sunday, 11 November 2007

Marton Mere, Fylde - Starling Roost and Bittern - 11th November 2007

Marton Mere - Blackpool

A Trip Marton Mere was planned for Dusk, to coincide with the activity of the Wintering Bitterns. My Mum and Myself joined locals, Pauline and Mike McGough, and Maurice Jones in the Fylde Bird Club Hide. We started off counting the Starlings that were roosting. When the last Birds were coming in, we estimated 80,000 Birds in total. At this Point Mike noticed movement in the reeds, but it quickly stopped. after about 5 minutes, I saw the movement, and noticed the characteristic face of the Bittern! A Year Tick and a Fylde Tick.
On the walk back to the car, i managed a second year tick - 2 Woodcock flying seperatly from each other.

Saturday, 10 November 2007

Seaham, Seal Sands, Langdon Beck - 10th November 2007

Little Auks - taken by Bill Aspin, at South Gare 9/11/07
Me and My Dad at Seaham Front Kittiwake - Whitburn Harbour
Grey and Common Seals - Seal Sands, Middlesbrough

Bar Tailed Godwit - Seal Sands

Black Grouse - Langdon Beck

By Tagging along with My Parents to a 'do' in Newcastle on Friday 9th, I was able to get some birding done on the journey back. First Stop was Whitburn Harbour where 4 Kittiwake were showing quite well in the Harbour.
Next, we travelled south to Seaham and I spent c2 hours Sea Watching.
30 Little Auk >N (largest flocks 7 and 4, as rest were singles and doubles)
2 Velvet Scoter >N
1 Red Throated Diver >N
1 fem Scaup (on Sea)
1 male Red Brested Merganser >N
5 Teal (on Sea)
1 Grey Heron >S
2 Gullimot >N
1 auk sp >S
5 Kittiwake
A journey south to Teeside saw us at Seal Sands, which is an area of Mud Flats in the middle of Chemical Plants where Seals Bask, which is most unusual! Here the main species were Grey with about 15 individuals, but there were 2 Common in amongst them. Also a single adult Bar Tailed Godwit
Finally a Trip back on the way across 'the top' saw us at Langdon Beck, where we were observing 19 male Black Grouse. A Lifer and a real group of beauties!
A fabulous day, and one I will remember for a long time as It was possibly the best and most enjoyable Sea Watching Session I have ever had, as 22 of the Little Auks were at about 40 meter range with a single on the sea briefly allowing fabulous views. I was happy however to get to see the Flock of 7 and a single though further out, as this was a more likely view to get when sea watching, so to see the distant single next to a Guillimot, It was a really educational experience