Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Otters by torchlight!

Hello

Chris Payne was active this morning down in the Bradden area in South Northants. Plenty of nest-boxes going up in preparation for the new season and some ringing too with nearly 40 birds captured which included a 'new' flock of 10 Long-tailed Tits, 4 Robins and a couple of Dunnocks. One Blue Tit was a 'Control' which means it was already ringed and from another area as yet to be ascertained. Chris reports that the Nuthatches were very vocal and the Great Spotted Woodpeckers were drumming well. I'm sure we'll have some cold weather to come, but there is plenty of evidence that the new season is not too far away now!

On Sunday evening Jim Dunkley again tried for the Otters at Market Harborough and this time he had considerable success with an active romp of a female and three pups on the River Welland not far from the railway station. Jim has been speaking with the locals and although the Otters can show at any time, and anywhere along the river, the early morning and evening seems to be their particularly active periods. Watching them by torchlight in the evening apparently doesn't put them off! The Harborough Mail newspaper is also reporting regular sightings too during the last week or so...

Eleanor was out and about at Blueberry Farm, Maidwell this evening and saw two pairs of Stonechat and a hunting Barn Owl. Yesterday evening saw a roadside Barn Owl near Spratton too.

Regards

Neil M


Rook with deformed bill.
A species that seems particularly
susceptible to bill and feet deformities.

A hand-fed Robin.
Meal-worms can make
 such birds very tame!

Grey Wagtail
River Welland
Market Harborough

All images courtesy of
Jim Dunkley.

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