Friday, 27 February 2009

2 lifers 1 day

18/02/09
visited upton warren again today.visited the moors first(as i usually do now) didnt really get much around the north moors apart from a cettis warbler that flitted about in the reeds(giving a view it always does) and i scoped the islands from the hide and got an oystercatcher(year tick and my first for upton) but a buzzard flew over the paddocks. so now onto the east hide hoping to see the OYC a little closer but looking in the trees for lesserpolls didnt see non though. got in the hide and located the OYC i scoped him and almost sweared.but it wasent the OYC that atracted my attention it was the 2 ducks behind it.a pair of pintails(lifer 179). god these are beautiful little birds. with all my lifers i watched them for quite a long time by the telegraph pole to the left of the west hide.fro this i presumed you would get great views of them from the west hide but i found out later the birders in the hadent seen them. i txt brian strech if anything else was about at uw.he replied about a mealypoll on the track to the east hide but when we again looked it was a no show.i told him about the pintails and the OYC.and joined my dad on the other side of the hide facing the track. this is when the beautiful male bullfinch came out at close range and i got another film:

video

i also got one of the OYC:

video

also noted here was:

2 greylag geese

3 shelduck

2 pintails

1 oystercatcher

3 bullfinch

then visited the west hide where i logged:

15c reed bunting

1 water rail (not very good views today)

4 more bullfinch

1 green finch

- chaffinch

1 goldcrest (behind the hide)

and various other feeder birds and a very enfusiastic kid whos voice appears in most of my videos from today.

now onto the flashes and the white fronted goose.this was in the fields to the south of the flashes and gave distant views(lifer 180).oh well , butits another bird to add on my list. this fed in the fields for some time till it dissapeared over the ridge of the hill not to be seen again.we stayed till dusk hoping it will return to the flashes to roost.we estimated about 30 canadians were in this flock.it was also joined by the 2 greylags from the moors that were seen to fly in from that direction.

also noted was:

2 little owls(on barn roof and a year first)

36+ curlew(these were the ones we could see from the hide we heard an unknown amount on the 3rd flash)

1000 aprox lapwing(both flashes and surounding felds)

40c teal(a large flock landed on the 3rd flash containing about 30 birds)

2 shelduck(same as moors)

3 snipe

nice day i think hope i can get some more like this

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

dowles brook

17/02/09
this is the post which will get most people anoyed. it was dipper that surprised me.not a british 'red bellied' one but a probable continental 'black bellied' one.i mean a dipper had a black belly that means a 'cinclus' dont it.unless someone has heard of a british dipper showing a black belly. but it chose to show its self at a very bad time.when we had to get back to the car before our time limit runs out.we first saw a 'red bellied' dipper so decided to have another look at it further downstream.while walking very slowly to see if we could see it and near a area where a lot of branches have near enough clogged up the stream. now i could see the british dipper on a tree root in the water about 15m away.i was about to look through my scope when woooooooosh. a pair of mandarins flushed from brook and landed 'on' the dipper scaring it half to death and it flew away again and the manders followed suit and left shorty after. we got to the grassland bit(a bit before end of dry mill lane) and relocated the manders and i started to take a video.it then wouldent save it and i lost the film(very important for later)after walking quite long and seeing jack we decided to walk back along the brook instead of the planned route along the old railway line.and again we saw nothing till we reached that 30m strech of the brook where the dipper was.we again followed that route we took before.i was leading and my dad was behind.i stopped dead as i saw a dipper less than 3 metres away.i hushed my dad to be quiet as he realised the dipper was so close.i looked back at the dipper and my brain went into overdrive as i realised that this wasent the red belly we found earlier.it had a black belly.for about 10 seconds it just stood there.then it was gone.i rushed on and scanned for the dipper, no sign, crap.so here i was with no notes photos or videos and only my dads word to say that we had been watching a black bellied dipper.my dad moved closer to the edge and the dipper flushd again(god i really hate flushing birds its not good for the bird or the birders).my dad caried on to the car as we had only half an hour to get back to the car parked in bewdley.not good. i bit the bullet and went back for one last glimse and there he was perched on a rock in the brook.i imidiatly grabbed for my phone so i could get some photos.i got one that shown the birds black belly and the phone started to save it.then popped up saving failed(i now know the reason for it not saving was because there was no signal on my phone)so instead i wrote notes.heres the extract of an email i sent to brian strech about the id: the bird looked mostly a sooty black colour but the head showed a very dark brown tinge which stood out.it had darker fringes to the scapulars giving a scolloped look.these dark fringes dessended all the way to the rump.it had a slightly darker lore and an entirely black bill.the most obvious feature though was the black belly.which showed no lighter colours at all.the secondarys and primarys were black apart from pale fringes to them.the legs were dark.the bird was watched at extremly close range of about 2 metres. as i mentioned in the txt it was reluctant to flush untill very late.
now i had the notes i rushed towards bewdley along the r severn paying little notice of the 8 goosander,kingfisher and little grebe on the river(my first ever on a river)i txt the news out to the very few contacts i know eg brian streach,andy shaw and my friend andy(from the west mids).i have submitted a rarity form to the county recorder.so now i just hope ittle get accepted. i dont think it will, cause of its extreme rarity and the fact it was seen by a 13 year old birder(but i have been birding 4 nearly 5 years)if it dont get accepted it wont go on my list its as simple as that and mabey the fact that i only mention the good bird seen,on this blog which gives the impression i only see good birds.so from now on i will include all days birding even if all i say is 'jack about boring day'.ive been neglecting the other birds seen by not mentioning them so here are the highlights:
mandarin duck-2
goshalk-1
lr sd woodpecker(seen only 100yars from where one is now)
dipper-1
posible b b dipper-1
nuthatch-2(first 4 year)

Monday, 23 February 2009

WATER PIPIT possibly

for all birders reading this i am seriosly sorry for not putting the news out about for any of the rare birds seen over the week 16th-21st febuary.my internet had stopped workin so i couldent get the news out but i did txt the news out to people i know(more like 3 people).

16/02/09
visited grimly new workings today hoping for the wipit.my chances were looking bad as it hadent been reported for almost a week. what we first saw was a shelduck(a female).at first i have to abmit i thought it was an egret.but on getting my scope onto it revealed it to be a shelduck.we hung around for about 2 hours and then a pipit popped up from behind a ridge in the middle of the pool.all i noted was whiteish underparts and a yellow bill base.and then it was gone. after about 5 mins a sparrowhalk flew over and flushed the pipit again and i noted white tail sides.then i was gone never to be seen again.could this be the water pipit im not sure would anybody please help me.so feeling downhearted about not being able to id the pipit i started to head to upton warren.
headed towards the flashes first hoping to see the white front.as we got to the feeder hide the lapwings all took off.there was at least a thousand that covered the sky.christ thats a sight and sound to behold.no sighn of the white front though.also noted was 29 curlew a good scattering of teal and a few snipe.
so now over to the moors.there are 3 highlights here a bittern that flew in front of us(around 6 metres away) from the east hide.3 golden plover that landed on the islands briefly and a jack snipe in amongst 41 common snipe.i did also count 151 lapwings here.there were now 3 shelduck.2 greylag geese were on the islands.3 water rails gave superb views from the west hide and i even managed a video of it.

video

highlighs are:

bittern

greylag geese

shoveler-14

pochard-10

water rail

golden plover

snipe-41

jack snipe-1

plus most birds from last post from uw

soz for me rushing things towards the end my sister needs to get on the computer to do her coarsework

but even this day couldent get me ready for my week to come

Monday, 9 February 2009

my new favorite bird.

well most of you can guess what my new favorite bird is.well if not then take a look at my last few blog entries then you will know.

well there waxwings or should i say the proper name bohemian waxwings.i love everything about them. i love the way they act,the way they sound and there beautiful soft pink plumage. and of cause there apsolute tameness.one day im sure ill find an image showing one in someones hand(but not been ringed ive seen that picture on birdguides) or perched on there head(steppe grey shrike style).so if anyone has any stories of waxwings leave a post.i just love hearing about them
i found this image on the internet and just thought it was great so i put it on here and updated the 'my most recent lifer'
and now down to birdwatching.
lickhill manor caravan park
8/02/09
the mourning walk was quiet today with no outstanding bird apart from a juv siskin on the entrance road.but this only hinted what as to come.
now when i got to the lake i saw a grey wag bouncing about(year tick).i had a look at the canadian geese to see if BPP was in there and he was(BPP is the ringed canadian which has been semi-resident on the site for the past 2 years.i now know he was ringed as a baby at stubbers green in 2003 and he stayed around there till august 2004 when he disapeared).
but the real interest was from the birch wood behind the lake.clighming over the fallen tree i hearda flock of siskin.it was very very loud so i presumed it was a big flock.i didnt want to scare them off i went the slightly longer route but come around them from behind.and im so glad i did.siskins everywhere in every birch tree.there was at least 60.i moved slightly into the wood and scanned the flock right.siskin,siskin,siskin,lesserpoll,lesserpoll,siskin.then a flock of goldfinch appeared boosting the flock to well over a hundred.but just as i started to scan again another bird caught my eye.i lifted my bins and stopped dead.large pale redpoll with a slight pink flush to the breast.got to be a common/mealy.i watched for a few minuites till i was dead cert about the id.it was a clasic mealy.right so now txt brian stretch,andy shaw,my dad and my other birdy friend andy.this was my second for the site following a bird seen in 2007.here i also noted chaffinch(lare flock feeding below the siskins.proberbly on the food dropped)and this flock had a brambling(female).i only watched it for a couple of seconds when a spazzahawk flew in awquadly and flushed the lot including the brambling and the mealy.
later in the day i came again after visiting my nan on her birthday to see if i could get a picture of the bird.i relocated the flock by the imense noise the were making.but they had moved onto feeders in someones garden at an awquard angle and i got a brief view of the bird again about 20m away from my.so deffinetly no pictures then.so at this point i gave up to chill out the rest of the day and maby finish my A2 sized waxie picture

Monday, 2 February 2009

waxie picture

these are the waxies trust me they are the setting on my phone were wrong and this is how it came out

but they are waxies i also got a film but my phones not letting me send it to the computer. soz

upton warren

31/01/09
after the waxies left we tuck around for about 20 mins but there was no sighn.the birders started to drain away.(by the way the 'andy' person from yesterday was andy shaw) so we also headed away but decided to drive to upton warren and have a look to see if we could relocate the waxies.no luck with them though.so instead we turned our optimism to seeing the bittern.if we saw him/her it would make the perfect birding day.we arrive at the moors.we first went into the hide to the north moors.where a water rail was swimming in the water about a few meters in front of the hide.but it dissapeared in a few seconds(year tick).we then had a walk around the north moors plantation.on the way a cettis warbler poped out of the reeds for a couple of seconds.the plantation was dead apart from 3 male bullfinches that a birder that i think is rob smith pointed them out while in the hide(i have met him twice before at dowles brook in the wyre forest and at the waxie twitch late last year at the warren. we looked in the birches/alders on the causeway and saw 4 lesser redpoll. we then walked to the west hide and heard a goldcrest by the gate. we started walking down to the hide when we meat a family who said the bittern was showing now.my pace suddenly lifted as i realised this could be my only chance to tick them unless i see them in the february holloday. my dad stoped to watch a kestrel hovering as i scooted into the hide.i asked if it was still showing and it was under the right leg of the pylon(where i nearly always is).it was the pale bird again.after a few minuites watching that i scanned the lake but what i hadent noticed ubtill now was the masses of reed bunting and bullfinch on the feeders(for both species i have an estimate of 20 over the reserve)there was another water rail which was very showy only going into cover occasionaly.the year ticks and highlights are:
bittern-1
shelduck-2( a pair on islands)
wigeon-1(the only one i saw proberbly more)
penegrine falcon-1(circling the masts as we approched uw village)
water rail-3(menioned above)
curlew-9(on islands)
snipe-2(there was about 10 that others had seen but we were in the west hide so you cant see th islands that well)
cetti's warbler-3(brief views)
reed bunting-20 aprox
the year list now stands at 66 species but the amazing thing is that is saw 58 species today.
so to summerise today up i had 1 lifer and 11 year firsts.see what i mean about this being my greatist birding day. any big twitches reading this will think its all commons but for any midlands birders like mysel its a good day.