Monday, 27 April 2015

Northumberland Barn Owl

Not another effing Barn Owl image.
This one isn't flying, mind.
And it's backlit.
OK ????

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The next generation.

I caught these Avocets copulating while out and about in Northumberland this morning.
But even better here's the moment he puts his wing over his partners back afterwards.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Tattoo Tony, new blogger

Tony has a few health problems, that's an understatement actually, but generally 5 days a week he makes his way in his wheelchair from his home in Longbenton to Gosforth Park Nature Reserve. It has taken him to a better place, as it has done for many of us. Check out his new blog HERE and see what's knocking about in Gossy Park.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Colour ringed Avocet

I captured this Avocet image at Cresswell Pond on 11/4/2015 and checked a couple of sites for info. without any success. I posted a slightly different version showing the colour rings quite clearly on Facebook having seen another image of the same bird by Mark Mowbray. I'm pleased to say that Ian Fisher saw it and came back with the following information.
"Avocet ringed at CRESSWELL POND as a CHICK on 10/8/2012 being 1 of a brood of 3. Good to see that it has survived and returned to its natal site."
Returning Avocet.

Saturday, 11 April 2015


I have to admit that i didn't particularly enjoy my mornings birding today. A vicious at times, chilly wind coupled with squally showers and miserable conditions was a far cry from the trip up to the Druridge area on Thursday. Add to that the fact i was one layer light and i ended shivering a couple of times, it wasn't the best. The wind meant that the smaller birds were generally tucked away and i was to be disappointed looking or indeed listening for a nice warbler or two.
Only 4 Avocets at Cresswell Pond early on. It was nice to see a couple of Snipe showing on the sand bar along with many squabbling Redshank. A lone Curlew spend much time preening while a pair of Black-tailed Godwit dropped in for a far too short visit. I spent the majority of the morning encamped in the hide at Cresswell not fancying getting jostled about in the wind and not knowing when the next shower would come through. One of the Barn Owls kept coming and going to keep both me and the banks of lenses happy, when they weren't disappearing for cover in their cars.
Off to Druridge for what was going to be a short visit and as expected nothing out of the ordinary with one exception, for me anyway. I was pleased to see 4 Tree Sparrows on the feeders at the back of the Budge Screen as i watched and listened for the non existent warbler. The Lapwings were doing their thing but sitting in the Budge Screen hide wasn't pleasant at all so that was curtailed. With nothing but a dozen or so Tufties and a couple of Canada Geese on the main pool i left.
It's quite a suprise how often you see Tree Sparrows at different sites these days. I saw a pair examining holes in the tree where the Little Owl used to be sighted up Druridge Lane (if that's its name) for a second time in two weeks last Thursday. It doesn't seem that long ago that Big Waters was almost the only place up here you would have been guaranteed views of this charming bird.
One of the two Godwits as they departed.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Incoming !!!

Thirteen Avocets were my reward for an early morning visit to Cresswell on a beautiful spring morning. An hour later i was sitting in the Budge Screen not shivering, for a change. No wind, some heat in the sun, the air was filled with birdsong and the light was fantastic. Loads of interaction between the birds that were present with a couple of male Shoveler and numerous Lapwings the stars of the show. The Lapwings in particular, as was the case last time i visited the Budge Field, were mesmerising as they twisted and turned in flight. Aerial masters.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Sheep Egret chillin' with its mates.

Sorry, i meant Cattle Egret.

There has been two of this species hanging about this area just north of the RSPB reserve at Dungeness. As i stood at a gate looking across the field through my bins a voice piped up "You'll be looking for those white things then" "they've been knocking round here for about 6 months now." the elderly gentleman dressed like a scarecrow announced. I initially had just the one but shortly before heading off back into the reserve the second bird appeared just in time for a record shot of them both in frame.
I did have Little & Great White also later in the day.