Showing posts from January, 2012

Twite at Oldbury Power Station

Sunday 22nd January 2012
It was great seeing the four Twite this morning with Andy and Mhairi. After a leisurely saunter around the site we located the Twite in a Maize stubble field SSW of Lagoon III, perching on the hedges surrounding the field (ST603934) among a small party of Linnets. After flying across the field a couple of times, the Twite eventually settled hidden amongst the stubble to feed. Lots of other birds were noted including on Lagoon III 130 Dunlin, 280 Lapwings and four Ringed Plovers; along the shore c15 Turnstones, a Redshank, and another 40 Dunlin; and around the stubble field c20 Yellowhammers, six Reed Buntings, six Skylarks, a few Chaffinches and Goldfinches, c40 Curlews, and c150 Starlings. Magic!

Garden Visitors

Thursday 12th January 2012
Two Lesser Redpolls were on my Nyger feeder on Thursday, competing with the Goldfinches. Hopefully the Redpolls will be regular visitors for a while. A male Great Spotted Woodpecker is also being seen on a regular basis, and a male Bullfinch has been feeding on cherry tree buds beyond the back of the garden. I haven't seen the male Blackcap since 1st but I'm sure he's still around. Good number of Greenfinches are coming to the feeders, the twelve on Thursday being the highest number so far this winter.

WWT Slimbridge Birding

Saturday 7th January 2012
... the best kind of birding when it's like this morning and it's your first birding of the year. The target birds initially proved elusive though. I had to wait over half an hour to eventually locate one of the BITTERNS as it crept through the reed-bed in front of Zeiss Hide. A Cetti's Warbler was more accommodating showing a couple of time near the hide and singing. After an earlier unsuccessful search I returned to the Rushy and then Robbie Garnett Hide where the female LESSER SCAUP was showing nicely, albeit in its usual sleepy state. Each raise of its head was accompanied by a burst of shutters from within the hide. More photos below. 
The Tack Piece was teeming with thousands of waterfowl and waders, the latter being frequently panicked into the air by a young Peregrine causing the Dunlin, Lapwing and Golden Plover flocks to take to the air. The waders also included at least three Ruffs and 15 Redshanks.
From Holden Tower the 225 White-fron…

Magpie Inkcap

Monday 2nd January 2012
I was doing mainly doing family things over the festive break, and hindered by seasonal germs this meant I haven't been able to get out birding for what seems like quite some time. Monday's outing involved a ride on the superb Severn Valley Railway stopping off at Bridgnorth in Shropshire. In Castle Gardens at Bridgnorth we came across a group of the fruiting bodies of Magpie Inkcap (above). I'd never seen them before, and very attractive they are with dark brown with cream scales. Oh I almost forgot, I did do some birding - on the return ride back to Kidderminster station I year-ticked Pheasant near Bewdley; also Elephant and Rhinocerous as the line passes the West Midland Safari Park! It was nice to see a male Blackcap turn up in the garden just after Xmas, it should stay around for a while. A high count of 20 Chaffinches in the garden on Monday gives hope of Brambling, so fingers crossed.