Monday, 23 March 2015

Circular Patch Walk

Date: 23rd March - All Day
Location:  Newton St Loe Circular - Long Patch Walk
Observation:  Headed out to the patch slightly earlier today, 1 Buzzard and 2 Greenfinch started the walk, nothing through the campsite again and now builders moved up to Dog Walk for refurbishment of campsite! 2 Chiffchaff (new in) a bit further up on the Dog Walk, where they have been previous years. 

Seven Acre there were 3 Buzzards circling and it looked like trying to catch the Pigeons, kept diving near them causing them all to fly off! A few Skylarks up also (a few Magpies seemed to be watching them, as they come up they would fly over and have a look maybe for eggs/chicks?). Not much along the byway, so onto the Village.
 At the church, we heard a Great-Spotted Woodpecker drumming, so tried to locate, turn around and a Kestrel dived about 20 foot from us caught a vole sp. and landed back on the Church to eat it before flying off again!

At the Lake, just the normal about, Grey Heron on nest on Bottom Lake, no sign of Little Owls (builders about also here), 13 Teal on Top Lake, along with 2 Grey Wagtails and a few Coal Tits, maybe a Marsh Tit, but flew off without getting a picture.

We walked back over the hill onto Home Farm and along 12 O'Clock Lane for a change, not alot about apart from the usual Tits and Finch's. Pennsylvanian Farm there were some Pheasants, Jay's and 1 Tawny Owl heard calling also.

Weather:  Cloudy, Overcast + Cold
Other Species: 3 Grey Wagtail, 2 Pied Wagtail, 2 Greenfinch, 4 Buzzard, 2 Chiffchaff, Kestrel, 2 Greater Spotted Woodpecker, 3 Green Woodpecker, 2 Coal Tit, 1 Marsh Tit, 2 Jay, 6 Meadow Pipit, 3 Skylark, 13 Teal, 1 Tawny Owl - Of Note

Thanks For Reading !

Sunday, 22 March 2015

Slavonian Grebe - Cheddar

Date: 22nd March - Late Afternoon
Location:  Cheddar Reservoir + Chew Valley Lake

Observation:  Chance to get 2 new ticks, so we went for it! Headed straight to Cheddar Reservoir late afternoon (hoping it would be quieter and better light). We walked clockwise around the Reservoir, plenty of Great-Crested Grebes and Coots around, with Pied Wagtails also. We got to the Western Tower, and spotted the 2 Scaup (male and female) sleeping, in between BINGO! 

The Slavonian Grebe about 70-80 foot from us. We watching it fishing, preening and resting and it come closer in times, but ended up going towards the middle when it left it. 

There were also a few pairs of Great-Crested Grebe's displaying, fairly close range which was lovely to see! We then moved onto Chew Valley Lake on our way home, no sign of the Long-Tailed Duck or Great Northern Diver, so had a quick coffee and headed home!

Weather:  Blue Sky, Sunny + Warm
Other Species: Kestrel, Tufted Duck, Coot, Scaup, Slavonian Grebe, Great-Crested Grebe, Pied Wagtail, Meadow Pipit, Barnacle Goose, Common Gull, Herring Gull, Little Egret - Of Note

Thanks For Looking !

Monday, 16 March 2015

Patch Birding in the Rain & Hail

Date: 16/03/2015
Location: Patch Walk - Newton St Loe

Observation: Headed out on patch with rain drizzling but waterproofs on and hoping it would stop, it didn't! On fields Skylarks at least 10 both sides of track, Buzzard sat on Seven Acre.

Village normal House Sparrows, Tits and Wren .

Church 2 Goldcrest

At Newton Drive car park Mistle Thrush high in his normal tree singing away.

Grey Wagtail on lower waterfall.

7 Mute Swan and Teal top lake with 2 Grey Herons. Goldcrest around lakes at least 5/6 some even letting get a picture ! 

Out through college on permissive path Coal Tits and more Goldcrest on football pitch a flock of Song + Mistle Thrush, Fieldfare, Redwing and Starling around 40 birds in total.

On hill up to Home Farm Meadow Pipits a group of around 10 birds on ground feeding and perched.

A couple more Buzzards, two Roe Deer and a Tawny Owl calling from 12 o'clock lane just as it started to hail. I quickened my pace at that point and home to dry off !

Weather: Rain then Hail !! 

Other Species: Goldcrest, Buzzard, Teal, Fieldfare, Redwing, Starling, Meadow Pipit, Grey Wagtail, Skylark .
Other: White Tailed Bumblebee.

Thanks For Looking !

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Westhay - Greylake and Ham Wall

Date: 10/03/2015

Location: Westhay - Greylake and Ham Wall 
Observation: Headed to Westhay got there 11am, got out van and a Cetti's was singing away went down Daggs Drove to viewpoint thought I'd might go for the Marsh Harriers but first bird was a Reed Bunting closely followed by the "PingPing" of a Bearded Tit couldn't see it then 5ft in front of me it appeared camera focused on reeds nice !! Beardy flew across water and gone .

mmmm...record shot :)

Frogs hopping across drove on way back.

After half hour went on to Greylake.
Feeders were packed with Reed Buntings

Chaffinch, Blue, Great tits, Dunnock

and the odd Starling 
Got some great in my opinion flight shots of Chaffinch.

At hides Wigeon, Shoveler, Snipe, GWE, Teal were bathing in the sunshine
Left around 3.30 and popped in to Ham Wall on way home Chiffchaff and Goldcrest on path up to viewpoint 2 from here saw Marsh Harrier distantly and heard a booming Bittern, from Tor Hide saw 2 Great White Egrets and nesting Grey Herons. At view point 1 saw 2 Marsh Harriers hunting again at a distance.

 A final Buzzard in car park then home.
A great day !!

Weather: Blue Skies + Sunshine 
Other Species: Bearded Tit, Cetti's Warbler, Reed Buntings, Marsh Harrier, Great White Egret, Bittern (booming), Buzzard, Chiffchaff, Fieldfare, Gadwall, Greater Spotted Woodpecker, Goldcrest - Plus usual suspects..32 species.

Thanks for looking !

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Full Patch

Date: 08/03/2015

Location: Full patch walk - Newton St Loe
Observation: Headed out on full patch walk today, out through campsite all quiet, Skylark top fields maybe 4/5, no picture as Skylarks are like Icarus they fly straight towards the sun ! Not much on lane towards village the odd Dunnock, Robin and Blackbird. Out through village and to lake, Little Owl present while watching another Little Owl dived into same hole.
Distant, bad light wrong setting you know the excuses !!

Goldcrest also Treecreepers. 

Teal still present top lake with around 50 Black-Headed Gulls also.
Headed on out through college towards Home Farm uphill with Skylarks this time around 8/10 buzzing over fields a Buzzard also.
Onto 12 o'clock lane a family of Long Tailed Tits followed me along lane until I spotted 3 Roe Deer in fields below, they didn't see me! No white tails running away !!

Took small lens to get some sunset shots but not really a good one tonight,
hope tomorrow a good day ?!  This the view into Bath.

 The last thing I spotted was a Hare ! Hunkered down on fence line different place to where I've seen them before

Weather: Cloudy with sunshine 10c 
Other Species: Goldcrest, Treecreeper, Buzzard, Yellowhammer, Little Owl, Teal, Coal Tit, Skylark.

Thanks For Reading !

Monday, 2 March 2015

Crossbills, Nuthatches + More !

Date: 2nd March - All Day

Location:  Forest of Dean - Gloucestershire

 Observation:  Day off with blue skies, so headed to Forest of Dean! We started at Crabtree Hill, to find the Great Grey Shrike, we looked with 5 or 6 other birders with no luck, but did find a pair of Crossbills (1st new tick for L), Redpoll and Siskins and a small group of Fallow Deer, we photographed them for 15 minutes or so, and walked back in the hope of seeing the Shrike, but again no luck, was quite a wind blowing so maybe put him off! But walking back we seen 3 Raven's circling over!

With still no sign we moved onto Cannop Ponds, and took a few shots of the resident Mandarin Ducks (2nd new tick for L), around 5 there, with more around the Lake, with also a Little Grebe of note. With alot of Thrushes feeding on the mud, we put some seed down and within seconds there were Great Tits and Blue Tits and then 3 Nuthatches, all taking it in turns to feed on this! They were coming within 5 foot of us at times! 

Over 200 shots later between us, we moved onto Parkend, in hope of some more Crossbills and Hawfinches. A few birders looking for these who had been there throughout the day, looks like it did show early morning, but once again we missed the Hawfinches (we will be back!), Crossbills also didn't show at Parkend, but we did see 4 Squirrels, 3 of which were Kits, come out the nest and playing and chasing each other around the tree, before it got too windy and 'Mum' followed them back in to warm up! Although we didn't see everything we didn't want to, we will be back to get the other ticks! 

Weather:  Blue Sky, Some Cloud, Cold Wind

Other Species: Buzzard, Crossbill, Redpoll, Siskin, Raven, Coal Tit, Mandarin Duck, Nuthatch, Mistle Thrush, Song Thrush - Of Note

Thanks For Looking!