A Good Weekend's Birding

Saturday 25th - Sunday 26th February 2012
Marsh Tit, Highnam Woods
I caught up with the superb first-winter male COMMON YELLOWTHROAT at Newport on Saturday with Mike and Mark. There was quite a crowd as to be expected, I reckon around 150 at one point, not my ideal scenario, but it was worth it eventually when I got very good if brief scoped views. This bird took me back to Florida where I had previously seen this species in altogether different surroundings at Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary - my favorite reserve. There it was in the company of the likes of Pileated Woodpecker, Black and White Warbler, Northern Parula, Limpkin - and Alligator! A long way from a bramble patch in a Welsh field.
Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, mid-drum, Highnam Woods
On Sunday, in beautiful still and sunny conditions, I headed for Highnam Woods, and it wasn't long before I located a male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker along the ridge above the pinetum. I watched it drumming, calling, preening, feeding, and generally entertaining me for some time; these are great birds and always a treat to see. I used my TZ20 to make a sound recording of calls and drumming; a Chaffinch is singing close by so listen carefully for the LSW call followed by two drumming passages:

Also at Highnam Woods, three drumming Great Spotted Woodpeckers, three Green Woodpeckers, four Goldcrests,  a Tawny Owl calling briefly at 8.45am, two Marsh Tits at the hide feeders, and two Roe Deer.
Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, preening, Highnam Woods
Snowdrops, Highnam Woods

Recent sightings on the local patch include a Green Sandpiper in the stream at Clearwater Drive wetland area, also a Little Egret seen here. A female Blackcap continues to visit the garden, as does a female Great Spotted Woodpecker, and a Lesser Redpoll was seen on Saturday.
Green Sandpiper, record shot, Clearwater Drive, Quedgeley
Starling, Clearwater Drive, Quedgeley
Female Blackcap, garden
A Water Rail photo taken on 11th February at the Robbie Garnett feeders, Slimbridge, when it was very icy:
Water Rail, WWT Slimbridge
Finally, a photo of a Honey Bee, taken with my new 100mm macro lens (in practice for the butterfly/dragonfly season!):
Honey Bee on Winter-flowering Honeysuckle, garden 


Rebecca said…
Some awesome spots! All of the locations are fairly regular visits for me, alas, not been lucky enough to find a LSW at Highnam, yet!

This post has just inspired me to get out and maybe a be a little more... patient? Haha!
Paul said…
Thanks for your comments Rebecca; patience is usually rewarded :)

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