Monday, 28 May 2012

Local Bits and Bobs

A little catch up the local wildlife had a trip out to Hexton Chalk Pits and Totternhoe and with the nice hot weather had many species of butterflies with a big number of Dingy Skipper in flight at Hexton Chalk Pits with Peacock and a fighting pair of Common Lizards. At Totternhoe had a great views of Green Hairstreak along with Dingy Skipper , Common Blue, Small Blue, Small Heath and a calling Turtle Dove.

Done at Frogmore lake had great local Wood Warbler which found by a local contact which was showing very well and singing almost nonstop even when feeding a great bird.

Dingy Skipper  
Green Hairstreak

Lizards having a scrap
The local Wood Warbler

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Alnwick and Berwick

With a nice sunny morning before heading off to Alnwick Castle had a nice walk round to have a closer looking at Warkworth Castle and the village of Warkworth in the early morning sunshine a worthwhile little detour.

Then headed to Alnwick Castle where we had a nice walk around the Garden where the Cascade where give a nice display before having a walk around the garden the hightlight beeing the tulips meadow with thousands of them. The after a few minute with a a lovely singing Blackbird walked around the garden looking at some of the intrestings flowers before a quick wander around the castle ground.

The fountain in the Cascade
The Cascade
One of the thistles in the gardens

Tulip field

Sunlite Tulip

Singing Blackbird

Dove from the garden
Alnwick Castle
Then headed up to Berwick before a little stop in Bamburgh to have a look at the castle. In Berwick had a nice wander walk round first along the River Tweed having a look at a few of the bridge crossing the river then around the town walls as this town was built around its city defence as it swapped ownership between England and Scotland a numbers of times. Then after dinner had a walk around Lindisfarne with the tide still out seeing the Priory and the castle and quite a few birds around the island with good numbers of Ringed Plover along with Whimbrel, Linnets, Gold Finches and Shelduck just around the main village.

Bamburgh Castle

Bridge along the River Tweed

Berwick's City Wall

Lindisfarne Castle

Lindisfarne Priory
More ruins of Lindisfarne Priory

Monday, 21 May 2012

A week away in Northumberland

Had a nice week away in Northumberland so for the first day after a drive up the A1 and a lunch a a little nose around the Angel of the North were despite its city location there were a few nice views overlooking the countryside. Then carried on up to Amble where we were staying before deciding on a walk along the harbour and the dunes. In the harbour got a few nice view including a view to Warkworth Castle and lots of birds around the harbour with plenty of Eiders pincluding one mother along with Turnstones, Ostercatchers and the seaside Gulls. Then walked along the dunes with some nice views along the shoreline and the pier along with some extra birdlife in the form of Sandwich Terns and Whimbrel. Then after dinner decided to come down to the harbour for the sunset.

The Angel of the North

View from the Angel of the North
Reflective Amble Pier

Warkworth Castle

Female Eider with young

Eider in the evening

Warkworth Castle in the evening light

Boat sailing into Amble Harbour

For the second day the weather had turned a bit cloudy so walked around Dunstanburgh Castle and along the beaches of Emblemton Bay up towards Low Newton-by-the-sea which was a lovely walk along the surprising empty but golden beach (even with no sun) despite the location of the stunning castle. By the castle there were a coloney of nesting Kittwakes which seemed to be collecting nesting materials from a pool at the back of the castle. Around on the beach had Sandwich Tern and Little Terns out at sea and on the beach itself there were Wheaters, Meadow Pipits, Rock Pipits,Ringed Plover along with Skylarks and Sedge Warbers in the dunes.

Dunstanburgh Castle
Emblemton Bay looking towards Dunstanburgh Castle  
Wheater on the rocks near the beach

Is Summer really on the way?

After a week in the chilly north east more on that in the next post had a nice walk around Tyttenhanger today with lots of Blackcaps singing and Lapwings flying along with two site first for me with Swift and Sand Martin over the pits along with lots of insect life reapearing with Orange-tipped Butterflies still on the wing along with some Small White and Large Whites along with lots of Ladybirds around. Also popped into Broad Colney Lakes and good to see that 3of the Great Crested Grebe chicks have surived grown to quite a big size now.

Friday, 11 May 2012

A sunny afternoon

Had a sunny afternoon earlier in the week so headed to Graftham water where had a nice lot of Passenger migrants with Wheater, Winchat and a distance view of Red-rumped Swallow along with lot of Yellow Wagtails showing really well there really a wonderful bird to see along with Skylarks still singing as well as on the shoreline Gadwalls , Shelducks and a few young duck and geese families. A nice surprise was seeing a few butterflies out with Orange-Tip, Peacock, Red Admiral, Large White all out in flight.

Posing Yellow Wagtail

Passing Wheater

Young Geese family
Goosling feeding

Monday, 7 May 2012

Bank Hoilday

Though mainly working over the weekend managed to get over to Amwell were there were hundreds of Hirundinidaes mainly Swallows and House Martins but quite a few Sand Martins. Also around were a few Redshanks, Common Terns and 2 Black one which appeared early evening. Around the Bittern Hide a Nightingale was singing though not showing and a Reed Warbler appeared briefly before going back to hide in the reeds along with the Sedge Warblers that i could hear. Also plenty of warbers around with Blackcaps, Chiff-chaffs and Willow Warber in full song.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

A dry afternoon

After all this rain we been having had a dry afternoon on tuesday so headed to Stewartby Lake where despite all the mud a very worthy walk with warblers singing all around with espically high numbers of Willow Warblers and Blackcaps with Whitethroats and Garden Warblers thrown into the mix, also quite a few finches with flocks of Goldfinches and chaffinches around and 1 lovely male Bullfinch. On the lake had a Common Scoter out on the lake though distance and 2 Common Terns overhead fishing. On returning in the woods heard a Cuckoo calling and had a goodview of at least 2 Turtle Doves they really do make such a wonderful sound.

Warbler in wet hedge
Turtle Dove up in the tree