Thursday, 27 August 2015

First Barnie capture for a while.

Although i see Barn Owls at a few sites when out most mornings recently they have been quite distant. This is the first to come within range for an image for a while.

Although i see them less i've had more close encounters with another species of owl.
A little Northumbrian.

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Looking promising IF....

....the outflow channel is kept from blocking at Hauxley. I have little interest in the new hide they are building on the reserve. I seem to remember that the previous "hide" had double glazed windows that didn't open....i found the experience strange ! I don't know when work at the reserve will be completed and it is fully reopened again but in the meantime i've taken the opportunity to visit the Ponteland Hide and following the work done opening up the above mentioned channel i was excited at what i saw when i open the shutters. Shallow water and MUD....something in very short supply normally ( although with the lack of rain recently we have a couple of decent sites at the minute) in Northumberland.
Ponteland hide birds
Waders at Hauxley      OMG
I had a Green Sandpiper, Greenshank, 6 Ruff, 2 Common Sandpipers, Redshank and a Little Egret in the all too short ninety minute visit. Birds were disturbed first by a couple of guys in high vis jackets "surveying " some of the work already done then finally everything disappeared , as i did, when the mechanical digger sprung into life and trundled in the the vegetation at the southern end.
Since my last post i had a couple of days in South / East Yorkshire visiting a very disappointing Potteric Carr reserve...13 hides and only one worth visiting, as it turned out. To be fair the weather was very poor and the chance of some dragon/ butterfly hunting was non existent. The following day had me at Kilnsea and Spurn and it couldn't have been more enjoyable. Again the weather wasn't great but i'll be returning again in the future. Extremely strong gusting winds had most of the birds hunkered down but i had a fabulous ten minutes with a Kestrel that was hunting on the path not eight metres away.

I'm not bovvered

Back home in the Druridge area a pair of Curlew had bred having two chicks on the Budge Field (the first recorded from what i understand) and at least one of them looked to have survived. The parents noticeable on most visits and the young seen occasionally.

One of the young 'uns
A yellow Wagtail looked stunning beside Bells Farm cottages one morning in decent light ( for once)
I managed seven Med Gulls another morning at Newbiggin but couldn't get a decent image but captured this guy with a B.H. Gull for company early another day. Twenty two Meds were reported around the same time by someone.
Little Owls and Kestrels were the stars when i met up with Doug, Jarrow Birder on Twitter, on another occasion. He showed me around the Leas, Whitburn C.P. and Jackies Beach where we had a stunning Knot in full breeding plumage and another interesting wader but, as usual, a dog walker lifted them almost as soon as we got on them. Doug had to get back home at lunchtime so i visited Marsden Old quarry afterwards and spent some more time in the company of Kestrels, this time an adult and a couple of juveniles. Super, smashing, great.