Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Weather birds

Apologies for late blog, computer problems !!

I managed to spend most of the day out birding, dog walking and dodging the showers !

During my first wet walk of the day in the valley below Hanging Houghton, a group of 5 Greenshank flew over heading towards Brixworth.

I decided to walk the two young dogs around the south side of Pitsford Reservoir, hoping that the drizzle and winds would produce some birds.  One of the first birds I noticed was a Woodpigeon sitting on one of the picnic tables . Nothing unusual in that you might think ? But it was sitting in an elongated pose looking skyward and as I followed it's gaze and saw a female Peregrine Falcon circling around.  Minutes later the gulls flushed up in a panic and I assumed that it was the Peregrine.......wrong, it was an Osprey.

I continued my walk round and saw a Garganey and a colour ringed [green on right and red on left leg] Little Egret near Pintail Bay.

A juvenile Arctic Tern was near the sailing club and a Ruff and a Sanderling on the shoreline near the Grange Bay.

On the long stretch from the Grange Bay to Catwalk Bay there were at least 4 Little Egrets, the Bar-headed Goose, 2 Ruddy Shelduck, a Whinchat, a Curlew flying over calling and a male Merlin. Finally there were 2 Common Sandpiper on the causeway.

After popping home to grab a cuppa and swap dogs I headed off to Harrington Airfield where it was obvious that there had been quite a fall of birds. I only walked along the "rough strip around the bunkers" and notched up Redstart, Whinchat, Spotted Flycatcher, Whitethroats and a Ring Ouzel.  There was a large mixed flock of birds moving through the bushes from the first to middle bunker.
The Turtle Doves were flying around the bushes and as I stood around at the end bunker a Curlew flew over calling and a male Merlin flew through. I wondered whether these were the same birds I had seen earlier in the day at Pitsford ?

There were also numerous Red Kites, Kestrel and Common Buzzard loafing around the recently harvested fields.

Butterflies included several Clouded Yellow including one of the 'Helica' form.


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