Thursday, 24 December 2015

Christmas Greetings

At this time of year it is always difficult to get out and about and do some "serious" birding. Other things get in the way and birding has to take second place. 
I did manage a couple of hours around the Blueberry Farm area before the rain started. I was there at first light and was lucky to witness both Barn Owl and Short Eared Owl hunting the same
 field . This particular Barn Owl is very pale and looked very much like a ghost against the winter sky, absolutely beautiful.
I haven't seen any Stonechat for a while but today there were two pairs so goodness knows where they have been hiding.
There was a female Peregrine again in the area and showing off her power as she went into hunting mode after the wintering thrushes. There are good numbers of Fieldfare and Redwing in the field hedges and also busy feeding on the very damp fields. No shortage of food for them at the moment and as a result no shortage of food for the Peregrine.
There are times when I'm watching the birds that I wonder where they have come from, what encounters they have had along the way, their favourite places and food etc.  In the majority of cases we simply do not know the answers. However there are times when we get a glimpse into their world through bird monitoring. I have just received notification of a Fieldfare which was caught and ringed at Pitsford Reservoir January 2011.  This same bird was recorded in Morbitan, France January 2015 a distance of 497km from Pitsford. Sadly it had been shot. But I wonder where it had been during those four years and whether it had even visited this area again.

Now, how many of you were looking skyward at just after 5.20pm this evening and waving to Major Tim and the crew of the International Space Station ??? !!  It was a perfect sky for viewing tonight and it showed very well as it went on its way...........or was the bright light really Santa on his sleigh ???

We would both like thank each and everyone of you for reading our blog. We wish you all a very Happy Christmas and send our best wishes for 2016. May you enjoy your birding whether it be from your armchair or from intrepid travels.

Regards Eleanor and Neil 
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