Friday, 30 October 2015

Wild coast of essex

Despite visiting the essex coast alot last weekend paid my first to Holland Haven and the great great country park at first just followed the sea hoping to see some waders but only birds around the shore were a mixture of gull including a few Greater-backed Gulls. Then walked inland where in the fields where at least 3 Short-eared Owls were hunting across the fields some flying close at times which was quite a suprise as there were still hunting by late morning.

Hunting Short-eared Owl


Then came to the Rough-legged Buzzard which at first flew across the field and was eating something in the field before flying across to the seawall where it hunting and was seen hovering a few times before it flew over my head by the seawall and settled on a post around the Golf Club.

Flyby Buzzard

Hovering Buzzard a trait of the Rough-legged





Buzzard sitting on the post


Then ended with a visit to the hide where there plenty of Wigeon and Teal and a few Black-tailed Godwit feeding in the water while a Kingfisher briefly landed by one one the pools while had a super view of a Short-eared Owl past the hide as well as a hunting Kestrel and a distance Sparrowhawk.

Next was a visit to Mersea Island and the Causeway which can be good for waders with the right tide around the edge lots of Dunlin, Turnstones and a few Redshanks and Little Egrets were feeding on the edge.

Reflecting Dunlin

Redshanks in with the Dunlin


Dunlin in flight
Then ended at Heybridge Basin where despite been quite busy with people enjoying the sunny day a great grey shrike was showing pretty well mainly preening and darting between bushes.

Great Grey Shrike


Out in the estuary of the basin plenty of waders with Black-tailed Godwits, Redshanks, curlews and dunlin feeding pretty close while on the Opposite shore a group of 300 or so Golden Plover was seen while A few Brent Geese,Teal and Wigeon were feeding out on the river and Bearded Tits were heard in the reeds

Black-tailed Godwit feeding in the mud


Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Few Goodies at Heartwood

Had a couple of visit to heartwood on saturday had a hunt for the shrike which had been seen no luck but the hedge near the scout hut was very good with my first site records of Lesser Redpolls with at  least 5 around along with Greenfinch, Goldfinch and Yellowhammer also around the Skylarks were in full song and a few Linnets and Meadow Pipits.


Then on monday back to do my final butterfly transect of the season only a lone Red Admiral was seen but super views of 3 Meadow Pipits and a nice singing Nuthatch was heard.

Meadow Pipit


Two of the three in the tree

Friday, 23 October 2015

North Norfolk Coast

Last sunday decided as recently there been constant east winds for a while and so some decent birds. First stop was at Sheringham where a super Isabelline Shrike was showing very well at times darting into the bushes to feed. Also around were a few flocks of Redwings passing through and a green woodpecker.
Isabelline Shrike


Next stop was a visit to Muckleburgh hill where a Olive-backed Pipit had been seen though had disappeared for a while but a nice selection of winter birds where flying through with Fieldfares and Redwings passing through as well as a few Siskins and Redpolls. After about half an hour the Pipit decided to came back to its favourite around at first feeding deep in the bracket before it came out to feed around a tree and a couple of peoples scopes well worth the wait.

Olive-backed Pipit



Then headed to Well Woods for a few hours were Goldcrests and birders all around. Starting walking down the path with Goldcrest and Robins before coming to a first group who were watching at least 2 Pallas Warblers feeding and a Yellow-browed warbler was heard. Then headed down to the drinking pool where had the amazing sight of group of Goldcrest and a few Coals tits coming down to bathe and drink. On the main path overhead more Redwing,Fieldfares and a few siskins passed through

Bathing Goldcrests
Goldcrest drying out

Then headed back down the path where a Pallas warbler was feeding up in the tree showing very well before walking back to the car when a group of Pink-footed Geese flow over.

Pallas Warbler

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Winters coming

A walk with the St. Albans RSPB group to Pegsdon Hills on Saturday was quite chilly but started off well with a Treecreeper seen from near the hill entrance along with 4 Buzzards and a couple of Red Kites, As we walked up the hill we had singing Skylarks and flocks of Meadow Pipits passing through and a few flocks of Linnets and Goldfinches.

As we climbed up had quite a few thrushes flocks calling with Redwings and Fieldfares flying Southwest in group of about 50 birds of which some landed and seemed to be feeding up in the hedges. At the top of the hill we had  the sight of the Jackdaws and Crows playing in the wind around the trigger point while in the trees we had a mixed tit flock which also contained at least 1 Goldcrest.

We walked down to the valley where the wind dropped where we a good view of a Kestrel hunting. This area was also good area for Green Woodpecker with at least four in this area as well as a single Great-spotted Woodpecker. Also a calling Bullfinch was seen and alone Mistle Thrush which was a little challenge when Fieldfare and Redwing are all around. Then walked back to the car when we added House Sparrow, Collared Doves and lovely flyby Sparrowhawk.

Friday, 16 October 2015

Siskins at Amwell

With the recent Siskin influx over the last month seen plenty of Siskin flying over but at Amwell recently was lucky enough to see a few feeding on the Catkins.

Feeding Siskin



Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Weston Turville Osprey and Wheatears at Startop's

In my week off in september a nice morning took me down to Weston Turville to see if I could see the Osprey hunting as i never seen any hunting in this country. So after a nice walk down to the hide with warblers singing and a few Jays oversgot to the hide where it had been sitting in its usual tree and after a little while it got up and started hunting and had a few goes but with no success it got chased off by the local magpies. So decided to walk down to the side of the lake and see if it would reappear which after a little while it did and gave super hunting views before catching a fish and which point it vanished to go and feed up,

Heron in the early morning light

Fly over jay

Osprey in the tree with the magpies





Osprey hunting

And off with with the fish



Then headed around the Tring Reservoirs to see what was around where the birds of note was a nice family group of 3 Wheatear at Startop's Reservoir showing well around the NW corner before at leat 2 birds flew up into the nearby tree after getting flushed by a dog.

Wheatear by the waters edge