Monday, 9 October 2017

American Wigeon at Rutland. Willow Tit at Kelham

On Sunday we hope that the Scops Owl will be found & reported  in Ryhope, so we head up to Rutland so if the Owl shows we will be half way up to Durham & can shoot off there.
After last weeks big dip we don't want to go that far without it being seen.
So a nice early visit to Rutland to look for the American Wigeon.
We park up & head to pool 2 and find Smew hide and once inside we find the Wigeon without to much trouble.
A cracking little  bird to see & only the second one we have seen, the first being in Devon a few years back.With no news of the Scops Owl we head towards home but stop off to try once more to find a Willow Tit having tried at Kelham a few times already this year & dipped we hope this time will be the one.
Brian headed off to do his own thing as he has already ticked Willow Tit while Jimmy & I watch from the hide where the feeders had been filled & plenty of birds were feeding but it's it a long time nearly 2 hours before we get a very short view of a single Willow Tit as it lands on the tree behind the feeders but never came onto the feeders & was gone very quickly but we got a good look at it for a year tick.
While here a Kingfisher kept landing on a couple of posts to give great views & a pair of Green Sandpipers landed near to us & a Snipe was also seen.
So a very pleasant weekend that got me four year ticks.
Willow Tit
The American Wigeon
American Wigeon
American Wigeon Wigeon
The friendly Kingfisher
Green Sandpipers

Wilsons Phalarope & Long-billed Dowitcher at Oare Marsh.

A quick bonus trip to Oare Marsh after Brian finished work See's us arrive around 2 o'clock.
We find the reserve packed with birders looking over a pool packed with flocks of Golden Plover & Black-tailed Godwits also Turnstones, Avocet, Ringed Plover, Red & Greenshank,3 Little Stints,2 Curlew Sandpipers,a few Ruff the place is just packed with birds.
We are not here to long when we find the long staying Long-billed Dowitcher that only I needed for a year tick & then the reason for our visit when the Wilson's Phalarope flies in & lands very close to us for a great view of this funny little bird.
This is the third Wilson's that we have seen the other two being found on the Isle of wight & one at Vange in Essex. So another year tick that we all needed made for a very nice afternoon indeed.
The Wilson's
Wilson's Phalarope
Long-billed Dowitcher

Monday, 2 October 2017

A horrible dip ( Scops Owl ) Sunderland.

We take the decision to travel 260 miles that takes us four & a half hours on a rainy morning up to Sunderland where the Scops Owl has been seen most days over the last few days.
Thinking that we must be mad but still looking forward to seeing the Owl that would be a lifer for all of us.
We found the town of Ryhope without to much trouble & parked off road not far from the under pass that led us to many birders with glum faces as the Owl was no where to be seen.
After 4 hours & with hardly any sign of the sun we have to give up on the Owl & also missed out on a Barred Warbler that had been reported.
Only good thing about being here is meeting up with Geoff  & John after to long a time without seeing them.
Brian has visited North Yorkshire a few times over the years for work things so knows the area well & he takes us to the Moors just outside Harrogate & Jimmy & I pick up a year tick when we see some Red Grouse wandering about the moor.
Next we head to Bolton Abbey for another tick when we see a couple of Dippers on the beautiful fast flowing river that runs through the grounds of the abbey, Brian always tells us about this being a lovely place & now we have seen it for ourselves.
So Brian rescues the day for Jimmy & myself with a couple of ticks but never got anything tick wise out of the day & had the job of driving us home that took nearly six hours in horrible weather so a big thanks to him.
We nearly turned off  half way up to Ryhope & head to Kilnsea where we would have got a few more ticks but the draw of the Scops Owl was too much so no regrets.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Red-throated Pipit ( Lifer ) Landguard.

Jimmy & I head to Landguard in search of a lifer after a Red-throated Pipit landed there yesterday.
We arrive just after first light & walk up to the wardens house where it had been seen on Wednesday
but after briefly scanning around the house we have no luck so walk up towards the sea wall. It's then that we notice a small group looking as if they might have something around the concrete blocks so we head over to them & one of the group is LGRE & he has heard the bird & within minutes the Pipit lands a few feet away to give us both another lifer.
Over the next hour or so we get some good views of it, a lovely little bird not to much red on show on the head or throat but very boldly streaked making it easy to pick out as it feeds with a few Meadow Pipits.
Today's  Red-throated Pipit
Red-throated Pipit

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Local Red necked Grebe Roding Valley Lake.

Nice for my local lake to get some attention when a Red necked Grebe landed on the lake on Friday afternoon,a right bonus as the lake has never had anything this good.
Only living 100 yards away Jimmy & I are over there as soon as we hear about it from Brian, once we locate the Grebe we let Brian know & he soon joins us to get some good views of a juvenile bird.
Today we head back over & the Grebe is still showing well & in much better light Brian gets some great  photos.
Never thought our local lake would be the scene of so much attention with a fair number of birders arriving all day long.
The bird was still hanging about late this evening so maybe some more watching it tomorrow if not birding elsewhere.
Brian's photo of the Red necked Grebe

Monday, 18 September 2017

Grey Phalarope K G V Reservoir

A quick visit to King George Reservoir in Chingford it's only local to me & the Phalarope has been seen here for a few days.
Jimmy had already ticked the bird on Thursday but came over with me to help spot it.
We walk all the way around the south basin stopping from time to time to scan the water but after over an hour there is no sign.
So we finish the loop & just before we head down the slope to the car Jimmy gives it one last scan & bingo he has it in the scope.
The water was very choppy so we expected it to be more on the edge in the calmer water but it was found right in the middle of the reservoir, so another year tick for me.
Grey Phalarope

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Spotted Crake Ingrebourne Valley

A short trip of 20 miles See's the three of us turn into Ingrebourne park at around 8am.
It's a short walk down to the viewing platform & a few people were already scanning the area in front of us where the Crake had been seen yesterday.
It's nearly an hour before Brian spots the Spotted Crake in the corner of the reeds & over the next couple of hours it moves across the reed bed from left to right giving us some great views of a lovely little bird. Nice to meet up with some familiar faces over the time spent here.
So a nice easy year tick for all three of us.
The Spotted Crake