Sunday, December 30, 2012

Catch Up

Not much in the way of Birding or Wldlife Watching over the past 3 month this is due to working weekends hopeing to be getting back into some more come the new year so will wait and see what the work situation is like will be putting together some photos I have taken over the past year not sure when

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Crake and Dowitcher


Friday 21st September Rainham Marsh

Got the train to Purfleet then the walk to Rainham Marsh arrived at one o’clock walk to the hide then after 2 and ½ hours the bird showed Ballion’s Crake so well pleased but sadly no pictures the bird was very quick as it moved along the edge of the reeds and out of sight I did wait another ½ hour but it did not show again just as I was leaving my mate text me going for the Short Billed Dowircher tomorrow do you want to come well I had planned on going by train so the answer was yes

Saturday 22nd September RSPB Lodmoor

We set of at 6 – 30 breakfast on way arrived at 9-15 walked along the path to where some birders were watching the Short Billed Dowitcher after watching it for a short time set up the camera and run off a lot of shots here is one of them

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Cornwall

Days 3 to 5
 
Day 3
Penzance / Marazion / St Ives

Today decided to get the day bus ticket and head for Maraxion Marsh to see if I could see the Spotted Crake that has been around for a while arrived at about ¼ past 11 and stayed at the spot till 2 o’clock no sign of the crake birds seen included Common buzzard, Water Rail, Sedge Warbler, Swallow, Grey Heron, Little Egret, Cormorant, Wigeon, Canada Geese plus a selection of Gulls I was in two minds whether to come today as I was told there was ringing going on early morning if there was it had finished when I got there but no one else was seeing the crake after yet another pasty and coffee at the cafe by the bus stop I then got the bus back to Penzance on arriving at the bus station the open top bus that does the sightseeing tour was there so I thought I might as well take that back to St Ives 2 and half hours through some nice scenery just after we left Pendeen I had 2 Choughs flying along the cliff tops plus more Swallows after a look at the time table I realised that It would drop me of outside my B&B so ending a long and enjoyable day
Day 4
St Ives / Lelant Saltings

Bit of a lay in today did not go out till 10 walked into St Ives along the road as it had been raining over night and was told the coast past would be very muddy in places was told would take 30 to 40 minutes to walk into town well 20 minutes later I was there then the short walk out to the head, on arriving there were a couple of birders already set up I asked what had been seen so far this morning about a hour before I got the they had a Long Tailed Skua, Grey Phalorpe through so I set up the scope and the first bird I was put on was a Bonxie (Great Skua) we had more Sooty Shearwaters, a few Baleric Shearwaters and of course Manx Shearwater the count on manx was about 10,000 a hour going through they just kept coming I was there for just over two hours just as the birds got a bit quite someone spotted a pod of 9 Harbour Porpoises this was followed by 3 Basking Sharks of witch one came in close, after this we then spotted 2 Sunfish ended up with 4 Bonxies other birds included lots of Gannets, Sandwich Tern, Mediterranean Gull, Kittiwake, Fulmar, I then went off for a pub Lunch then got the train to the Lelant Saltings by now the tide was coming in so I spent some time till all the waders had been pushed of the mud by the tide Birds included Wigeon, Grey Heron, Little Egret, selection of gulls Black Tailed Godwit, Curlew, Whimbrel, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, As the tide got higher I found the best vantage point was from the station platform at least I could sit down then realised that I would have to wait over a hour for the next train to Carbis Bay so got the next one to St Ives and came back so another good days birding and nature watching

Day 5
After breakfast had a walk along the cliffs at Carbis Bay then back to catch my coach  so ending a week in Cornwall

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cornwall


Day Two

Halye Estuary (Pec or not to Pec)

After another full English breakfast decided to have a look at the Hayle Estuary today after a look at the pager I got the train to Hayle on arriving I headed straight for copperhouse creek where there had been seen a Pectoral Sandpiper for the past four days arrived at 10 30 no sign of the Pec so set up the scope and waited spent the next 2 and a half hours scanning the end of the creek with no luck (the bird was reported at 10 to 12 from the spot I was standing at no idea who put it out or see it ) some of the birds seen included Knot, Curlew Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Curlew , Whimbrel, Black Tailed Godwit, a selection of Gulls but no Pec at 1 o’clock walk along the north side of the creek and had a coffee only new wader for the day was oystercatcher then headed back to the east end but still no luck< Hear I got talking to another birder who said he was going to have a look near the Levant salting I said that it was to far to walk so I would stay where I was he then said he would give me a lift so of we set to the spot that one of the local birders said was the best place to park on arriving we crossed the road to the bridge and I set up my scope then a birder who was already there said he just had a sandpiper drop in and could I have a look through the scope and it was on the edge of some foliage and was not that easy to see we were all debating on what it could be it then came in to the open and  you could see that it was in fact the bird I had just spent the past 4 plus hours looking for yes at last the Pec Sandpiper so well worth the wait did get some useful information on how to work the Estuary for future reference so ended a very good days birding  

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Cornwall


Day one
Carbis bay / St Ives
After a trying journey yesterday bit of a lay in today after a first class breakfast full English I set of for St Ives Head I headed for Carbis beach then took the coast path to St Ives on the walk down to the beach I had 2 Ravens fly over head the walk to the head took a hour and a half I arrived at 10 30 this is the start of a 4 and a half hour sea watch the first bird I saw was a Whimbrel at first not a lot doing but it normally take about half hour to get you eye in then things started moving a bit, plenty of Gannets and Manx Shearwaters after a short time had Balearic Shearwater and one Bonxie at 12 30 it was time for a short break for Coffee (think that is what they called it) and a Cornish Pasty then back to the sea watch at about 13 30 there was a lot of birds moving through this is when I had my lifer GREAT SHEARWATER had about 20 Manx go through and this bird was behind them the bigger sixe put me onto it then had great views as it went by this was followed by some Sooty Shearwaters and a Sabin’s Gull with plenty more Gannets and Manx Shearwaters then at about 2 15 it went quite again I was then talking to another birder when we had a Little Gull flying around the bay, then when I was packing up to leave at 3 o’clock I found a Basking Shark so ended a good sea watch, I then got the train back to Carbis Bay where I had seen the Shark and spent another hour Sea Watching more Gannets Manx Shearwaters and now I found the 2 Basking Sharks that had been seen earlier today so ended a good days sea watching. Will see what the weather is doing tomorrow before I decided where to go still some good birds to see

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

I am still here

Hi All
I am still about due to the fact I have been working for the past 3 months this included most weekends I have not done much birding or nature watching I am now on 2 weeks Holiday so will be posting what I am up to this week I am spending it  at my Caravan then Next week I am off to Cornwall for a week so hoping for some good sea watching

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Photos from Mull

                                      White Tailed Eagle
                                     Golden Eagle
                                     Short Eared Owl
                                      Raven
                                      Puffin
                                      Great Northern Diver

                                     Whimbrel
                                      Black Guillemot
                                       Corncrake
                                     Corncrake








Sunday, May 6, 2012

Rest of The Mull Trip

1st May

Had a boat trip booked for today to visit the Treshnish Isles took the bus from  Craignure to Tobermory then onto the boat we were told we would be picking up on the main land then off we set to the Island of Lunga on route I had Gannet, Manx Shearwater, Storm Petrel, Black Guillemot, Guillemot, Razorbill,  Great Backed Gull, After we landed on Lunga we made our way to the top of the cliffs here we had Puffin, Fulmar, Shag, more guillemots and Razorbill, Great Skua, Raven, Herring Gull, Wheatear, Meadow Pipit, We had 2 hours on the island and the time just flew by so it was back on the boat then we headed for Staffa and a look at fingal’s cave where we had ½ hour then back on the boat for the return to Tobermory but has we had to drop off on the main land first we did not get back till five past four meaning which means I had missed the last bus back after miss reading the time table I had a walk in a small wood by the car park where I found Redstart, Chaffinch, Great Tit Blue Tit, and at the top of the burn I had a Dipper so After realising my mistake I then got a taxi back to Craignure so ending a long day but a very good one
2nd May

Today I had booked another of the wild life trips the route was much the same as Mondays trip but just as good we did look but no otter today, As I was walking to the meet point some shouted Eagle which I found it was a White Tailed Sea Eagle and had very good views and managed to get a picture of it at the meet point they had been watching 2 WT Eagles so we started of our first stop was for WT Eagles but has we had already had good views we moved on birds on the loch included Red Breasted Merganser, Eider, Common Gull, Great Northern Diver, Black Guillemot, and along the shore where Oystercatcher, Common Sandpiper, Meadow Pipit, Starling, We then stopped at Salern for a toilet break but the toilets where closed so after a short stop at the pub for the toilets we then set off for Knock where we stopped for lunch just as we started lunch the call went up Golden Eagle which we watched and had good in flight views it then landed and started plucking at something it had on the ground and stayed there for the rest of our lunch break we then continued on round the loch birds seen included Lapwing, Raven, Linnet, Meadow pipit, Wheatear, Eider, Great Northern Diver, and a Whimbrel (hopefully some good pictures) we did stop at a spot for more White Tailed Eagles and had the pair, We then moved on to Glen More here we had Short Eared Owl we did stop when the call went up maybe a Harrier but we could not relocate it so it was then back to Craignure to end a very pleasant and enjoyable day

3rd May

Today decided I would try for the Corncrake on Iona so caught the bus at 08-35 to Fionnphort then the ferry to Iona walked towards the abby and stopped at the organic gardens at the Columbia Hotel I had been told this was where to look I heard 2 Corncrakes calling but no sign so decided that I would take the walk to the north shore birds seen along the walk included Rook, Hooded Crow, Meadow Pipit, Wheatear, Herring Gull, Great Black Backed Gull, Starling on the return route much the same so now decided to have a look at the organic garden again this time the gardener said we could come in set our self up he told us where a Corncrake had been showing well all morning and after half a hour it put in a appearance and what an appearance (got some good pictures) did not expect them thought I would be lucky just to see one in the end I heard five of which I saw two, I then decided to have my lunch in the hotel very nice it was Corncrake calling outside the window, After lunch which was very nice I then returned to the garden and took some more pictures as it was still showing well the gardener said another 4 days and you will not see it as the grass and reeds will be to high so well pleased then back on the ferry to Mull and a hour wait for the bus where I took the time to update what I had been doing over the past few days made sure I did not miss this bus as it was the last for the day then back to Craignure for 5 o’clock a nice beer shower then off for a meal then went for a walk hoping for Otter but no luck

4th May

Decided to leave the Island on the ¼ to 11 boat today the weather was not as good as the week had been so thought might do a seal trip from Oban not a lot from the boat and when I arrived in Oban the tide was out so no boat trips for today as i was booked on the 18-15 coach to Glasgow what to do with the day, as I could see some Black Guillemots out in the harbour decided on a walk along the shore north of Oban did manage to get some picture of the guillemots but a bit distance I walked for just over a hour then started on the return as I came back the Guillemots where a lot nearer so got some more pictures these where a lot better, Then lunch in Oban after I had a look north of Oban took a walk up to Pulpit Hill some good views from here as it was quite steep decided to come down via the road not as bad as the footpath up, Then time for a coffee and some  time for shopping, I had decided to have my evening meal before I got on the coach this done I then had a short time to wait for the coach to Glasgow and then another short break before the coach to London arriving back at 07-00 Monday morning so ending a great trip to Scotland

Monday, April 30, 2012

Mull part Two


30th April

Today I had  booked one of the wildlife day trips that are available on Mull was picked up at 10-30 and what a day it was where to start first we had a look at grass point  no Eagles but we did have Buzzard, Meadow Pipit, Hooded Crow, Chaffinch as there is some building going on at the end not much chance of Otter so we moved on to a area for Hen Harrier and Short Earded Owl with no luck  we then moved on retracing our steps on route we had a White Tailed Sea Eagle we then headed for a site for White Tailed Sea Eagle but did not see any the call went up Otter but this turned out to be a Mink after a brief look in this area we then headed to knock where we had lunch just has we where preparing to leave the call went up Golden Eagle we Watched It come of the face and disappear out of sight we then continued on having more pipits and Wheatears, Common Sandpiper, Oystercatcher, on route to our next stop we stopped at a area for Peregrine which we had plus Kestrel a little further along the road we found Raven as we were driving along I had a twite fly across in front of us  Then onto a site for White Tailed Eagle where we had one of the birds sitting on the nest  while here we had another Golden Eagle with more Buzzards and Raven, We then continued on where we had Great Northern Diver, Red Throated Diver and a Otter asleep on the far bank (too far for a picture) we now continued on our way back after passing a good spot for Short Eared Owl no luck we spotted a bird of prey ahead of us this turned out to be a nice Male Hen Harrier which gave a good show but distance, Then we retraced out route to see if we could locate any Short Eared Owls where we had 3+ birds some good views we then moved onto a another Golden Eagle area where we had 2 birds in the air, Then back to where I had been picked up and the end to a great days birding` some of the other birds seen included Wren, Robin, Song Thrush, Goldfinch, Eider, Red Breasted Merganser, Goosander, Mallard, Common Gull, Herring Gull, Shag, Siskin, Wi8llow Warbler, Stonechat, After my evening meal I took a walk along the shore from my B&B looking for Otter with no luck and no new birds for the day lets see what tomorrow brings

Will put together a list of what I have seen this week later not sure of total so far but must be 50+ species

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Mull Trip


28th / 29th April

Decided to take the coach to Scotland the reason was to keep the cost of travelling down left London at 22-30 (on the 28th) arrived Glasgow  07-00 (on 29th) had a hour and half wait for connection to Oban arrived 11-25 the trip from London was not that bad had worst on some flights, The trip to Oban is one I have done many times in a car but from a coach you see it from a different angle not a lot bird wise but a very enjoyable trip, On arriving at Oban I had a short walk around waiting for the pubs to start serving food at 12-00 found a nice quite one tucked away in a back street, After a snack and a pint i had a look in the harbour to see if I could see Black Guillemot that breed here but with no luck I then had a walk along the road towards the camping and caravan site looked good for Otter but again no luck so it was back to the Ferry Terminal for a short nap then the ferry to Mull on the crossing I had Guillemot and just over half way across I found a Black Guillemot but not a lot else, So i found my B&B and settled in have a great view of the bay so who knows what might turn up first thing in the mornings, Then off for my evening meal which I have just finished very nice indeed so now looking forward to the rest of the week hopefully I will be posting every evening as I have free Wi Fi at the B&B I have my bins with me so a look at the bay on the way back to the B&B.

Friday, April 27, 2012

27th April West Sussex


Trip to Sussex today with my mate set of from home in the rain our first stop was Ivy lake to see if we could find any Black Terns but with no luck we did have Blackcap and a Garden Warbler we spoke to another birder who told us there was a Wood Warbler at church Norton , Our next stop was a look at the ferry pool but no sign of any Common Sandpipers But a few Reed Warblkers , Then onto Church Norton we took the path down to the harbour where there were some other birders looking for the Wood Warbler after a short time we had views of it but it was keeping deep in the bushes we also had Whitethroat, Blackcap, Willow Warbler, Chiffchaff, Garden Warbler, We then had a walk to the sea but no sign of the Short Eared Owls that had been seen this morning on our return to the car park we had 5 Whimbrel, Now onto Selsey first stop for food then onto Bill House where we did a 2 hour sea watch birds seen Common Scoter, Gannet, Sandwich Tern, Cormorant, Common Tern, Great Black Backed Gull, 3 Black Throated Divers, 3 Little Terns, and lots of Swallows coming in, From here we headed for Pullbourgh Brooks where the weather had improved here we had  more warblers as before plus Lesser Whitethroat and Sedge Warbler but the bird we had hoped to see was the Nightingale where we had 6 singing and 3 good sightings of 3 of them Year Total now stands at 210
Nightingale

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

22nd April Chichester

The male Peregrine at Chichester

video

21st April Pulborough Brooks

Spent a very pleasant afternoon at the RSPB reserve at Pulborough Brooks target bird was to see if we could see Nightingale, We took a slow walk around the reserve plenty of Blackcaps, Willow Warblers spent most of the time looking for migrants while sitting in the Little Hanger Hide we had a Red Kite  just as we came of the hanger we heard a Nightingale and after some effect we did manage to see it we also heard a Cuckoo, then continued to the hides on the return route while sitting in the winpenny hide we had a Lesser Whitethroat at the side of the hide there were plenty of the common species now on 208 for the year

Friday, April 20, 2012

20th April Sea Watch


Sea watch at Selsey Bill

Decided to do a sea watch at Selsey today I spent 2 and ½ hours there not a lot happing for the first half hour birds see are 3 Bonxie 4 Arctic Skuas 1 Pom Skua 3 Arctic Terns 20 + Gannets plus a Swift flew in off the sea other birds seen included Cormorant, House Sparrow, Starling, Turnstone, Black Headed Gull, Herring Gull, Common Gull, Lesser Black Backed Gull, Just as I was leaving I was told that there were 2 Common Sandpipers on the ferry pool so i got off the bus and walked past the pool found the Sandpipers and got on the next bus so ending a good afternoon now on 205 for the year

19th April


19th April

Arundel

Spent the afternoon at  the wetland centre at Arundel nice quite afternoon (don’t think I have know it so quite people wise) at least 5 Cetti’s calling and a good number of Sedge Warbler nice number of Swallows with some Sand and House Martins as it was a bit of a wet afternoon no birds of prey plenty of the common species on the walk back to the bus stop alongside the castle in the canal that runs along the road I had a brief glimpse of a Water Vole as it disappeared into one of the holes

18th April


Pagham Harbour

Today took the coach to Chichester via Gatwick Airport (trying to keep the cost down) Arrived in Chichester at 11-20 then took the bus to RSPB Pagham nature reserve after a quick coffee I had a look at the ferry pool plenty of Shellducks, Lapwings, Teal, selection of Gulls and Corvids as it had started raining (showers where expected) I decided I would walk to the north wall I started along the old tramway where I had a Whitethroat singing I continued along the path to millpond where I found a Whimbrel then I continued to Halseys Farm then across the fields to the north wall where the sun came out plenty of common species seen after a short time the wind got up so I dropped off the top of the wall onto the path that runs alongside the wall and the reed bed where I stopped for lunch I then continued along the path and after a short time I had a Reed Warbler as I reached the sluice the rain started again I then walked along church lane to get the bus back   

Hre is a short video in slide mode of the walk please let me know whatb you think as i am thinking of more like this
video

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Saturday 14th April


Decided to do a few spots between Chichester and Selsey today we started at Ivey Lake part of the Chichester gravel pits not long after we started our walk we had a good number of Blackcaps and Willow Warblers and plenty of common species as we returned to the car we found a nice Redstart then had a Garden Warbler in the top of the trees showing very well for a brief time then Carol found a Pied Flycatcher but I did not get on it, We then had a look at the Ferry Pool and a short walk along the tram way back to the car park after which We  headed for Selsey where we sat at the bill and had lunch while here I found a Black Throated Diver on the sea and a Arctic Skua flew by, After a short stop for some shopping it was then onto Church Norton where we had  a look in the church yard not a lot going on we then moved on to the shore line and back to the car on route I found another Pied Flycatcher so it would seem there had been a fall overnight while in the church yard we had a Peregrine fly over head so ending another days birding

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Easter Weekend

Friday 6th April

Leaving London at ¼ to 11 we headed for Peterborough for the weekend after getting caught for a short time on the M25 once on the A1 all went well a short stop for coffee at the Baldock services we reached Peterborough just after 14-30 after a short break we headed for Thorney where there had been a Great Grey Shrike but not why we where there, So onto Guyhirn to the Chill Out Cafe where we found 4 Common Cranes (new bird for Carol) we then had a look at Nene Washes where we found another Common Crane so 5 for the day not a lot else as it was getting towards dusk and we had a long day we finished for the day.

Saturday 7th April

Today we headed for Titchwell on the North West coast of Norfolk after a short stop to see if we could see the Shrike again no Luck we then stopped to watch the 4 Common Cranes Again we then continued on to Norfolk stopping for a short time at Snettisham but as the tide was out a long way and the wind and the rain started we then continued on to Titchwell where we had a nice relaxing afternoon birds seen here included Marsh Harrier, Wigeon, Shovler, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen, Avocet, Black Tailed Godwit, and the nice Spotted Redshank that had wintered here so a good opportunity to get some pictures of it in summer plumage (pictures to follow) we then headed to the beach where we found the Velvet Scoter on the sea on the shore line we had Knot, Sanderling, Bar Tailed Godwit, Oystercatcher, We then started to head back to the car park where we had plenty of common species in the bushes plus our first Willow Warbler of the year after a coffee we then headed to Hunstanton cliffs here we found Fulmar not a lot else as the tide was still out so we had a look of the sea front at Hunstanton here we found some Eider, Common Scoter plus the gulls you would expect so now we headed Peterborough so ending a nice relaxing days birding

Sunday 8th April

Bird wise this was going to be a short day but that did not stop us having a very interesting morning one of those mornings that just get better as time goes on first stop was Rutland Water for the Ospreys that we knew had returned we had the pair at the nest too far for any decent pictures but very nice this was all we had intended to do, but then we decided to have a look at Eye Brook Reservoir we drove around the edge till we found a spot to stop and set up the scopes where we could scan the water (if you know this area we stopped on what is called windy corner where you can see over the trees on the other side of the reservoir right this is bird of prey territory what took place happened over the next half hour Red Kite, Sparrowhawk, 8 Common Buzzards, Female Goshawk, Osprey at one point we had Buzzard, kite , Goshawk & Sparowhawk in the air at the same time all be it for about 10 minutes so back to Peterborough for a chill out afternoon at the pictures and a meal then baqck to home after a short break the brother said he knew a spot for Barn Owl so off we set not long after we got there one flew along the river/drain so we continued further along the road where he said we should be able to find another one which we did it sat in a tree for a short time then flew into the barn also along here we had 3 Whooper Swans now as it was getting dark back to Peterborough so ending a great raptor and chilled out day

Monday 9th April

Just a mornings birding today we headed to Ferry Meadows not been here for some time as we started out there was some light rain so we headed for the sailing club area he we had a good number of Sand Martins where I found a couple of House Martins with them we also had Swallow we then decided to have a coffee so we retired to the cafe out of the rain while sitting here I found a Little Gull on the far side of the water we then parked near the main entrance after a quick look at the information centre we headed to the hides and a walk through a wooded area not a lot from the hides but in the bushes/trees and scrub we had good views of Blackcap, Willow Warbler, a selection of tits and finches on the walk back we had a bird singing on the far bank I said that does not sound right for a Blackcap then the bird put in a appearance and tuned out to be a Garden Warbler so a nice end to our weekends bird then back for lunch before we started for home

Year list stands at 193

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

London Wetland Centre

I had a very good afternoon at the Lndon Wetland Centre today Tuesday 3rd April the bird of the day was the male Garganey







Sunday, April 1, 2012

West Sussex and Hampshire

Friday 30th March

Today decided on a trip to the wetland centre at Arundel took the bus via Littlehampton as the road works on the A27 are still going on it turned into just the afternoon still a bit quite on the migrant front only a few birds of note Sedge Warbler and Willow Warbler Cwtti’s numbers are good at least 5 birds calling plus plenty of common birds from the reed bed loop over the hanger I had Common Buzzard, Sparrowhawk and 2 Peregrines gave up even thinking about getting the bus back so took the train to Barnham then the bus.

Saturday 31st March

Trip into Hampshire today starting at Gosport there where very few gull around the lake mostly Black Headed and a few Herring Gulls, We then had a look at the creek and after a short time we found the Ringed Billed Gull some way out just to far for a picture so it was back to the car for a cup of coffee while having this we had a Osprey fly over head so 2 more added for the year

Our next stop was Farlington Marshes LNR we took a walk to the information hut the had a walk around the bushes lots of finches Green, Gold and Chaffinch plus Dunnock and Wren, We the took a look at the lake and after a short time I found the Garganey so ending a pleasant days birding

Year list now stands at 188

Thursday, March 29, 2012

West Sussex

West Sussex 27th to 29th March 2012

Tuesday 27th

Today decided on a walk around part of the RSPB reserve at Pagham Harbour I started at Church Farm walked down Church Lane to the north wall walked along the wall then took the path to Halseys Farm then on to Mill Lane past the Crap and Lobster pub where I stopped off for a pint then on to the information centre and a look at the ferry pool, Then I took the bus to Ivy lake part of the Chichester pit complex I walked through part of the pits to Runcton where I caught the bus back to Bognor

Wednesday 28th

 Today it was back to the information centre at RSPB reserve Pagham Harbour I continued my walk past the long pool then on down the west side to Church Norton  then on down to the harbour, Then i walked along the beach towards the several’s then I took the path between the several’s where I stopped for lunch, Then I continued through the fields till I came to the lane and followed it back to the main road where I caught the bus to Selsey then I walked along the coast to the east car park and the bus back

Thursday 29th

Today I took the bus to Bognor then got the bus to Elmer and walked to Littlehampton via Climping at Climping I normally walk the road towards the mill have walked this road for the past 30 years now there is a sign telling you this a private road and no general access so I had to use the top of the dunes and walk along the shingle beach

Birds seen over the past 3 days included

Rook, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Jay, Green Woodpecker, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Great/Blue/Coal Tit, Wren, Dunnock, Robin, Firecrest, Goldcrest, Mistle Thrush, Blackbird, Ring Ouzel, Little Gull, Black Headed Gull, Great & Lesser Black Backed Gull, Common Gull, Woodpigeon, Little Ringeed Plover, Curlew, Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Wigeon, Mallard, Coot, Moorhen, Swallow, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Cetti’s Warbler, Black Redstart, Sandwich Turn, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Buzzard, Peregrine,
Current Year List stands at 184

Monday, March 26, 2012

25th March

Nice and pleasant afternoon in The Woodland Gardens Busy Park Kingston

















Friday, March 23, 2012

Rainham Marshes

Spent yesterday at the RSPB Rainham Marshes Reserve
Had a nice relaxing day went by train then a 15 minutes walk on the way to the reserve I had a Blackcap after a coffee I did the walk round the reserve found a imm Glaucous Gull plenty of Wigeon still about birds seen included Linnet, Robin, Reed Bunting, Woodpigeon, Rook, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Shellduck, Teal, Black Headed Gull, Common Gull, Grweat Blackbacked Gull, Herring Gull, Cetti's Warbler, Chiffchaff, Cormarant, nice walk around so will be doing this again

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

London Wetland Centre

Spent this afternoon at the Wetland Centre London nice and quite afternmoon I did find the Jack Snipe   plus Chiffchaff, Sand Martin. Cetti's Warbler, Ringed Neck Parrakeet, Redoll, Great & Blue Tit, plus a lot of common birds no sign of the Perigrine while I was there now the birds have eggs will not put up any information of where they are might go to Rainham Marshes tomorrow

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Short Update

Monday 19th March

Today decided to go to Weymouth and spend the day looking at Radipole and Lodmoor due to the trains being delayed (less said the better) I only managed to have a look at Radipole where I had the 2 Glossy Ibis from the north hide a few Chiffchaffs  and Cetti’s Warblers  Water rail, Sparrowhawk, Buzzard a selection of ducks and a good selection of Gulls no sign of the Iceland

Tuesday 20th March

Off to Beddington today where I had Caspian Gull, Iceland Gull plus the Kumlin’s Gull, Chiffchaff, Water Pipit, and had a House Martin fly over plus a good selection of common birds along the edge of Beddington park

Friday, March 16, 2012

16th March West Sussex

A few spots in  West Sussex today started off at a spot that I know for Lesser Spotted Woodpecker as we were walking along the path to where the woodpeckers are I flushed a Woodcock from the side of the path so a nice start we stopped near the  spot for the woodpecker and after a short time I had one carrying nest material then we spotted the female at the top of a tree calling not a lot of drumming going on but we did have a lesser calling and drumming for a short time we also had greater spotted Woodpecker for comparison, We then headed for Selsey where we spent some time at the bill but not a lot going on plus the fact it was getting cold so of to do some shopping year list now at 168

Thursday, March 15, 2012

15th March New Forest

We went to the new forest today we left the caravan at about 10 o’clock and travelled through fog on arriving in the forest the sun came out, Our first stop was at Hordel he we were looking for the Rose Collared Starling that has been about for a short time, We parked up near the spot it had been seen the past couple of days and we had a wander round we spoke to the local postman who told us which was its favourite tree so we hang around waiting for it to appear, Then a local said it had been in the tree at about 9 30 but no sign by 12 o’clock then a birder sais are you looking for the Starling because it is sitting in a hedge near where we had parked, So we went back on arriving the local who’s garden it was in said here it is, It was singing but deep in the hedge even the non birder with us got good views we had it down to about 8 feet I took some pictures but the fact it was deep in the hedge and the sun was behind it made it difficult to get any good ones but good views where had.

We then stopped at a couple of spots looking for Dartford Warbler which we found at the second one, Then it was off to a spot for Wood lark but as they where control burning this turned out to be a waste of time so we headed off to some shopping before heading back to the caravan.


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Update & British Tick

Not done much birding over the past couple of weeks
Yesterday the 12th March did finaly get the Paddyfield Warbler at Pagham so a British tick It took me five atempts not very good views so will go back later in the week to see if I can get any better views, Been to Worthing today 13th March good views of the Yellow Browed Wabler not sure what I will be up to tomorrow currently haveing a break at my caravan so will be doing some south coast birding will update when I can Internet connecton not the best

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Saturday 18th February

I had arranged with my mate to go to north east Norfolk today but this was changed when we heard about the Common Yellowthroat near Newport, Having checked the weather we set of at 4 30 and we were joined by Corrina after a breakfast stop we arrived at the site at about 7 15 we parked and joined the other birders that were already there about 150, There was no sign of the bird by 10 30 (there were brief sightings of the bird in the afternoon) as the promised rain started and rain had been forecast for the rest of the day we decided to head for the Forest of Dean to see if we could get ahead of the rain, On arriving at the raptor watch point the rain started again my mate picked up a Goahawk but me and Corrina did not get on it we had Raven, Crossbill, Common Buzzard here but the wind and rain moved us on we had a look at canock ponds where we had 27 Mandarin Ducks, Then it was on to the site for Dipper with no luck as we now where getting wet we decided we might as well have a look at Slimbridge to see if we could see the female Lesser Scaup, We set up in the Pen hide over looking Rushy pen my mate found the bird but then it disappeared out of sight but we did have some fun with a female Tufted Duck that had a lot of white at the base of the bill, We then had a look from 2 of the other hides overlooking rushy pen as we entered the last hide I found the Lesser Scaup again over the back and we had the female Tufted in the scope at the same time, we had a nice Water Rail out in the open, by now the weather had picked up at it turned into a nice sunny and please late afternoon after a coffee we set of for home.
As I have to work during the week no chance to go back for the Yellowthroat so a dip it was for me not the first and will not be the last

Monday, February 20, 2012

11th & 12th February

Saturday the 11th February

West Sussex

As the weather was not that good this weekend we decided to do another trip to West Sussex, As the Paddyfield Warbler had been seen the last couple of days this would be our first stop we arrived at ¼ past 11 but there had been no sign of the bird so far today we stayed till 1 o’clock no sign of the bird (on checking the pager all day there was no sign of the bird today) so we now decided to see if we could find any of the other birds we were looking for today

We now set of for Shoreham Harbour as the tide was coming in we thought we had a good chance of the Purple Sandpiper, We parked at the fort car park and walked towards the west arm after a short time we found 4 Purple Sandpipers sitting on the end of the breakwater as we were walking back to the car we had 2 Rock Pipits sitting on the west arm,

 We then checked the pager and found that the Great White Egret was still on Thorny Island so we set of there to see if we could finally see it on arriving we parked by the farm to have a look at the great deep from the road on checking along the road I could see some birders watching something from the checkpoint so we walked along and joined them just as we arrived the Egret was flying across the marsh to the north of the deep we had it flying about on and off for about 15 minutes but every time it dropped down it went out of sight but we had at last seen it.

We now decided to start heading in a homeward direction and decided to come back up the A29 we stopped at Waltham Brooks nature reserve and had a look at the sewage farm where we had 4 Chiffchaff which included the Siberian Chiffchaff, we then had a look at the brooks from the railway where there is a footpath over it, from here we had 3 Short Eared Owls and a Barn Owl,(It is a pity some people cannot put the birds first you can see most of the marsh from the river bank or from the railway I know I take pictures but there were birders with cameras trying to get pictures of the Owls but all the Owls wee trying to do was feed instead they were being chased up and down the marsh) on our walk back we looked at the sewage farm from the gate and here I had a Grey Wagtail

We see a good selection of common birds today I have only mentioned the new birds for this year in the main report.

Sunday the 12th February

London Wetland Centre at Barns

A short trip out today mainly to see if we could get any good sightings of Bittern on arriving we set of for the Dulverton hide were I had been told to look from on our way to the hide someone was watching something at the side of the path this turned out to be a close Water Rail which promptly disappeared so on to the hide we had not been in it very long when a warden said I have a Bittern which was on the other side of the area we were watching and we had good views of the bird, We no decided to have a look at Headly hide on the way round to it we stopped of for a nice bowl of soup in the cafe on arriving at the hide I was just setting my scope up to get on a Bittern I had seen on the far bank at the same time Carole also had spotted it and we had very good views of our second Bittern just a bit to far away for a picture but very good all the same, as it was getting cold again we headed of to do some shopping then home

Monday, February 6, 2012

West Sussex 4th February

We planned a trip to West Sussex today with a few target birds in mind
When we set of it was -4 degs our first stop was to see if we could see the Parrot Crossbill near Halsemere on arriving we walked out to the spot where there where already about 25 birders the bird had been seen at 9 o’clock no idea what the temperature was here but it was very cold we stayed a hour no sign of the Parrot Crossbill plenty of Common Crossbills, Siskins, Redwings and Fieldfare this was a stop we added to our planned day.
So back to the planed route we headed for West Dean looking for the Little Owl again no luck (wonder if the rest of the day was going to be like this) we did have Peregrine and 4 Common Buzzards other birds Stonechat, Blackbird, Rook, Jackdaw, Carrion crow

From here we headed to Thorny Island looking for the Great White Egret we had been told it was at the far side of the great deep so we walked along the sea wall to the security gate and scanned from here on route to the gate we had a Marsh Harrier, We spoke to a birder near the gate and he said he had a Greenshank back along the path which we located on our way back but no sound of Cetti’s Warbler or Bearded Tit other birds seen included Little Egret, Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Red Breasted Merganser, Wigeon, Curlew, Black Tailed Godwit. We then drove along the road towards the Gaurd House and parked to have a look at the great deep the other side of the road no sign of the GWE so we walked down to the gaurd house and scanned from there still no luck
Next stop was Fishbourne Creek we were looking for Little Stint which we found also had a Kingfisher sitting on one of the boats in the harbour other birds Dunlin, Oystercatcher, Cormorant, selection of Gulls Wigeon and lots of Pintail

We  now started to head for home and our last stop was at Burton Mill Pond we walked along the side of the pond to see if we could locate the Tawny Owl but a lot of the trees had been blown down in the recent storm so no luck, as it was getting colder again we decided to call it a day
If the weather had been a bit better would have seen more birds but I think the cold kept them well hidden out of the wind and cold, We did managed to see 2 of our target birds Greenshank and Little Stint still no Great White Egret will have to see what the weather is doing this weekend maybe back to Dungeness where there are 3 GWE

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

North West Norfolk

 29th January 2012

Today we had decided to do a trip to North West Norfolk we had a early start leaving London at 06-00 hrs in the end there was just the two of us as Corrina is still not feeling well. As we set of and it was very misty but as we drove along the M11 this turned to fog we stopped for breakfast to set us up for the day as we left here the fog was patchy, So on to our first stop at Fakenham armed with some information we drove to the spot and parked up we spoke to someone leaving and was told the Great Grey Shrike was showing when we got to the spot for it had just flown back to where we had walked from it then flew further along the old road where we had good views of it we also had 2 nice male Bullfinch here

Now it was on to the Norfolk coast starting at Salthouse where we had a nice flock of 25+ Snow Buntings and some Pink Footed Geese and some White Fronted Geese, I had some very close Turnstone which i got some pictures of



Next to Cley after getting our permit for the reserve we set of to see if we could find the Western Sandpiper we tried one of the hides overlooking pat’s pool where we found a flock of Dunlin we had been told that it was with the Dunlin flock after a short time we had a small wader fly of but it went out of sight so we then went round to the other hide overlooking the pool from the other side, some birders where on a small wader the other side of the pool after watching this for a short time everyone was happy that it was the Western Sandpiper other birds seen here included Avocet, Black Tailed Godwit, Ruff, Teal, Brent Geese, Shellduck, lapwing.


Keeping to our plane for the day our next stop was Holkam we parked up and set off for the gap we did stop near the path and have a quick  look for Firecrest but with no luck, So it was on to the gap on arriving there was a party of birders of to the west looking at something so we headed out to where they were but they were just looking at the large flock of Skylarks ( it was a bit later that we learned that there were some Twite in the flock) which we did not see, We then headed off to the east side of the gap where there were more birders watching the sea they told us the birds we were looking for where behind us so we set of to see if we could find the Shorelark after a short time with some other birders we found the 4 birds there was also a large flock of Snow Buntings here, We then went back to have a look at the sea where there was a Red Necked Grebe, Slavoinion Grebe, Red Breasted Merganser, Razorbill, Guilemot, on our way back to the car we scanned the large flock of Meadow Pipits looking for Rock Pipit no luck

We now headed to the end of Holkam Park where we parked and then walked back along the road to view the marshes for Geese he we had Brent, Canada, White Fronted, Pink Footed , Eygutian, and the small flock of Barnacle Geese


As we were driving along the A149 we stopped at Burmham Overy to see if the flock of Lapland Buntings where showing no sighting of them but we did have a couple of sub species of geese Black Brant and Pale Bellied Brent Goose, as we had already seen Rough Legged Buzzard we did not wait to see this bird because time was getting on.

Our next stop was Titchwell after a coffee we had a look to see if we could see the Cole’s Arctic Redpoll which we found after a short time there where a good selection of birds on the feeders Goldfinch, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Blue Tit, Great Tit, House Sparrow also in the trees we had Lesser Redpoll and Siskin, Robin, We then moved on along the path towards the shore having Black Tailed Godwit and a close Spotted Redshank on the sea we had Goldeneye, Red Breasted Merganser, Common, Scoter, Eider, Slavonian Grebe, Great Crested Grebe, 3 Long Tailed Duck, along the shore line there where Sanderling, Knot, and a selection of the 5 gulls you would expect to see Black Headed, Common, Herring, Lesser Black Backed and Greater Black Backed, On the way back to the information we had a Water Rail showing very well managed to get some pictures


We now headed for Hunstanton where we had Fulmer and Bar Tailed Godwit

As we were driving along the A149 near Heacham we had a Barn Owl hunting over a field, We now decided that there might just be enough light to have a look at the scissors at Wolverton for Golden Pheasant no sign of any we then drove around the edge of Sandringham looking for Woodcock with no luck as we came down the A10 near Ely a Tawny Owl flew along under the street lights

The final total of birds seen today was 101

Monday, January 23, 2012

Raptor Weekend

Saturday 21st & Sunday 22nd January

Saturday we left home about 9 o’clock for a trip into West Sussex we had a Red Kite fly over the A3 Esher by pass then another Red Kite near Petworth we also had Kestrel and Sparrowhawk on route, Our first stop after breakfast was Selsey we spent a short time at the car park at the bill only birds of note seen Gannet, Cormorant, Herring Gull, Black Headed Gull, Then we drove round to Bill House but it was very quiet.

Next stop was Church Norton to have a look at Pagham Harbour here we had a good selection of waders Curlew, Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Black Tailed Godwit, Dunlin, Sanderling, Knot, Oystercatcher, Redshank, Gulls seen Black Headed, Herring, Great Black Backed, Mediterranean, we also  had 2 Slavonian Grebes in the channel in the harbour entrance there where Red Breasted Merganser, We then walked along the beach to get a better Look at the Harbour as we had been told there were some Pintail there but no sign of them we had a quick look at the sea not a lot going on, We then had a look along the west side behind the Church still no sign of the Pintail so we drove back to the Ferry pool and had a walk along the west side alongside the long pool to have a look at the North West corner of the Harbour where we finally found the Pintail on our walk back to the car we had a Common Buzzard sitting on a fence post.

Our next site was The Burge at Burpham when we arrived the wind was very strong so it did not look very promising but we decided to have a short walk anyway we found 2 birds of prey flying down the valley one was the Light Common Buzzard that is present we did not get a very good view of the other bird but it gave the impression that it might be the Rough Legged Buzzard we then lost sight of the two birds so decided we would walk further up along the Burge as we walked along the road we had a flock of 60+ Corn Buntings in a bush After we had past the farm and took the path to the right so we could view the valley we had a Male Hen Harrier, Then we had the two buzzards up again this time much better views and now we could see that it was in fact the Rough Legged Buzzard as we here walking back we had a Raven fly along the valley and a flock of 14 Grey Partridge other birds seen included Yellowhammer, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Rook, Linnet, Kestrel.

Next we decided to have a look at Waltham Brooks here we here looking for Short Eared Owl but with no luck we did have a Ringtail Hen Harrier as the time was getting on it was time to start heading for home so ending a god days birding

Sunday

The Isle of Sheppey there should have been 3 of us going on this trip but as Corrina was not felling well it was just me and my mate Bob we had Kestrel and Sparrowhawk on route, We stopped for breakfast at what used to be a little chef it is now Nicky’s Rock Cafe and very pleasant it was after breakfast  our first stop was Kings hill farm at the RSPB reserve at Elmley we had a look here to see if we could see Little Owl but no luck we did have a mixed flock of Lapwing and Golden Plover, We then headed for the road to Harty ferry and the Raptor watch point on our way along the road we had the Rough Legged Buzzard over Mockett’s Hill not long after arriving at the watch point we had a female Peregrine sitting on the ground plenty of Marsh Harriers quite a strong wind here you had a job standing on top of the mound, We then drove to the end of the road we had Red Legged Partridge on the road and a Fieldfare sitting on the road at Harty ferry Inn where we had a look over the marsh but not a lot going on so we headed back along the road where we stopped to over look the marshes as it was nice and sheltered here we decided to have lunch (Bob’s homemade soup and sandwiches) from here we had ringtail Hen Harrier. And more Marsh Harriers

Our next stop was Muswell Manor where there had been a large flock of Lapland Buntings we did not have much information as to where we should be looking ( I have now discovered we here in the right place) but as there was a strong wind there was not that many small birds to be seen we sheltered behind a barn and had a female Merlin fly across in front of us it then landed on a mound out of the wind we had god scope views of tit so after braving the wind here we headed back to the Harty marshes when we got to the raptor watch point there were a lot of birders there  but nothing more than we had earlier we got talking to one of them and he said he had seen the Spoonbill near the hart inn so we drove to the end of the road again and found it feeding on the marshes then it was back to see if we could find any Owls but as there was a wildfowl shoot going on it turned out to be a bit of a waste of time so we packed up and headed for home so ending a good Raptor Weekend.

Raptors for the weekend total of 9
Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Merlin, Common Buzzard, Rough Legged Buzzard, Hen Harrier, Marsh Harrier, Peregrine and Red Kite

Monday, January 16, 2012

15th January

Dungeness Area

Today we visited the Dungeness are in south east Kent as we were driving down the temperature dropped as we drove over the weald a stop for breakfast at a little Chef this is one of the ones to be closed so will need to find somewhere else in future after breakfast we headed for Walland marsh, Near Lydd we had a small flock of Lapwing and Golden Plovers plus Common Gulls in a field we then continued  to a spot we know for Tree Sparrow where we found some on the feeders and in the trees nearby on crossing the marsh we had a flock of 49 Bewick’s Swans  as the farmer has done a lot of clearing around the barn area  no sign of Corn Bunting or Yellowhammer, Our next stop was the RSPB reserve centre here we checked the list to see what was about we then took a walk around part of the reserve stopping at a couple of the hides hopping to see Pintail but we had no luck all day with this bird (there was a group of wildfowlers being show around  the guy leading them was a bit over the top he was making more noise telling them about the ducks and other birds than the group themselves) birds seen on the way to Christmas Dell hide included Little Egret, Shovler, Gadwall, Wigeon, Cormorant, just as we were approaching  the hide Bob found a Raven from the hide we had 2 Red Head Smew then the group arrived so we moved on stopping at Denge marsh hide where had a Marsh Harrierso it was now back to the car, Meadow Pipit was added to the list we then stopped near the wardens house where we had more Tree Sparrows then it was off to the car park at the ARC pit we walked to the shelter hide here we had 2 more red head Smew  bob also had a Drake Smew then it was off to the main hide after talking to some birders there we found the bird we had come for the Long Tailed Duck but no sign of the Great White Egret that had been seen earlier in the day we had a quick look at the pit from the road but added no more birds to the list, We now decided to have a look at the sea taking in the flocks of Gulls on route, our sea watch produced 40+ Gannets, Guilimot, Razorbill, Brent Geese, lots of Kittiwake and 14+ Red Throated Diver’s ,we stopped to have a look at the Gull’s again but no sign of the Glaucous Gull, We now decided to return to Walland marsh and have a look at the spot for raptors  hoping for a Barn Owl with no luck but we did watch the Marsh Harrier’s coming into roost we had 10 in the air at once, It was a cold day not as cold as some we have had in past years< And so another good days birding comes to a end, Have arranged o go to the Isle of Sheppey next Sunday

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Spanish Sparrow / New Forest and Blashford lake

Spanish Sparrow

I had arranged to go to Hampshire with me mate Bob and Corrina  for the Spanish Sparrow we set off a little after 7 o’clock and where at the spot for the sparrow just after 9 o’clock we joined the rest of the birders and after a short time the Sparrow appeared in the hedge then flew across the road  where we all had good views of it (I did attempt to take some pictures but the bird was too far away and they are not that good ) on leaving here we had a Brambling fly in front of the car, Our plan for the rest of the day was next to see if we could see the Red Eyed Junco that had been present since Christmas near Beauliue  after a minor mix up over witch road to take we arrived at the car park and set off for the short walk to the spot here we had a good number of Crossbills which was nice to see after a while the Junco appeared in the tree with the Crosbills and a flock of Reed Buntings, Our next port of call on the agenda was Blashford Lakes on route we stopped for breakfast come lunch then on to the lakes where we had a Ferruginous Duck on the feeders from the woodland hide we had  Siskin, Lesser Redpoll, Great Spotted Woodpecker after speaking to a local we headed to Ibsley where in the fields we had a Whooper Swan 3 Bewick’s Swans and then someone told us there are some Egyptian Geese in the field further back we had a pair of Common Buzzard and some Canada Geese,  After this we headed back to Blashford Lakes and returned to the north hide where we had 2 Water Rails and a brief sighting of a Bittern  we also had some close views of Sisins and lesser Redpoll, The next stop on the list was Blackwater  arboretum for Hawfinch  we arrived at about 2 30 and it was very quite after a short stroll around  bird life picked up Coal Tit, Wren. Robin then Bob found 5 Bullfinches in a tree by now more birders had turned up and aftera short time Corrina found a Hawfinch at the top of a tree which we all had good views off as we were leaving me and Bob had another Hawfinch, As Corrina had a meeting we now had to start heading for home just before leaving the car park Bob heard a Song Thrush singing this was located then back to the car and home so ending a good days birding