Thursday, 29 October 2009
upton warren moors pool
again dipped out on the bittern but loads of water rails showing calling etc,a lot of time was spent looking at the sky and noted 16 meadow pipit,41 redwing,3 song thrush and 5 pied wags and 2 skylark,a very unusual moment was when a reed warbler belted out in sub-song in front of the water rail hide and according to one of the upton guru's,it is the latest record. 9 greylag geeese were in the canada flock.
this flock of greylags has been hanging around for a bit now hasent it,i first saw the flock on 5/09/09.i wonder whether it is the family flock raised here just one has left the flock.
you can tell it cant you, i'm struggerling about things to wright.
well a kingfisher landed on the perch in the little light.a cormorant was on the north moors and a green woodpecker on the causeway:
who like's gulls. I DO,I DO. next post is a quiz about gulls!!
Wednesday, 28 October 2009
spent 7:40-9:20 using my ears and eyes to spot incomming migrants.my vismig point looks N, NE,SE and S giving me a good scope of the area as the birds get funneled up/down the severn valley.the canadian flock was on a yeah high of 193 in the early AM but from 9am onwards the flock starts to diminish and fly away NW. and i have never found out where they spend their day or nights,anyone with local info can you help.any large canada goose flocks move off early mouning but return a few hours after, anyone with any info please help.if it helps there is a regular goose that is resident on lickhill that sometimes joins the flock,it has a red leg ring reading bpp.could be a good pointer to where it goes. and on the case of rings has anybody seen mute swan number L67.i had her on lickhill last sunday(25th) and an just wondering where she's been.and yes i have put them into birdtrack.
quite a productive visit light winds and clear skys meaning lots of birds going over:
Monday, 26 October 2009
somewhere north of stourton(staffs)
i still cant believe it,a crane.just listen to those words, c r a n e.
my dad was driving along the a449 south towards stourton(still dont know exact location of where the bird was) just after the lawnswood road there is a large gap in the headgeline, and in the stubble field was a crane,a bloody crane,in a small field(well thats not entirerly true). for the entire 15 secs i saw the bird i was in shock. the long legs,the bushy tail,it was just a crane.having just seen the bird and not knowing the exact location of the bird at the time i was sruck with a question,get the news out or get more details(my dad wouldent stop to loo for it and get some confirmation photos because we had my sister in the car who isnt a birder).i quicky put the news out saying i will give more details on the location once i have it.got a call from brian almost imidiatly seeing if i had any more details at the time,and i told him all i knew,which wasent a lot. after a bit i agreed to call him back with more details once i had them and the hard task of convincing my dad to take me back.after about 15 mins i got to my nans(closest place to the crane).i scurried around looking for a map but there wasent one so i went to my dad and asked where it was(he's a walking map-book).he told me some details, i wrote them down(i couldent remember them in that state) and got them to brian.after about 30 mins i convinced my dad to take me back and it was getting dark.
well we got there, it was very very dark,but it was very obvious that the bird wasent in the field. as most of you may know the a449 is a very busy road and one wonders why in hell would the crane land there,unless it was bloody knackered. well i guess we will never know...
i have sent a description form to the staffs recorder through the birdtrack website but i dont think it sent propperly so tonight i am doing it manually through my own email.dont have any pics of the bird but a pic of the field on the return visit:
the pic has been modded to make it lighter
Monday, 19 October 2009
with vis-mig now well underway i thought i could hit some passerines as they fly over and one bird,one that(as previously mentioned on this blog) is quite unusual on site, maybe ,you could get a few flying over, just on the northern boundry of the caravan park, 8 sand martin flew over,
shouldent these be in africa by now,
a constant stream of pipits developed and at around 10:40am a huge flock of about 100 birds came low over, a few fields down a buzzard was perched on a post,i decided to take my scope with me so hoped for good views, and yes they were good views, not the closest views but still enough to see the bill(thats how i gage rapor sightings,if you can see the bill it is a good view),
i took up my position opposite the buzzard on the river bank and rested my scope on one of the posts. the buzzard obbligingly perched there for about 30 mins
this field had been plowed and had a few gulls, then i noticed the wagtails around there feet, then i reallised there were pipits in the field,after a flyover sparrowhalk put the pipit flock up, i counted about 50 birds,this put the day total up to and amazing 200+ birds,and given this is a scarce species on lickhill i was well chuffed, with the tussucks of grass and small ditches it was hard to see them on the floor but a few landed on the barbed wire and posts that surround the field and gave decent views,
a few rain showers started bringing birds down low,and one bird flying lower over the field turned out to be a migrating STONECHAT(year tick), this is the 1st record for lickhill for about 3 years(as far as i know),but soon after it flew off again continuing its migration, a flock of 50 goldfinch contained 5 siskin in riverside birches(i think thats the tree it was in) highlights were:
200+ meadow pipit
10c pied wagtail
1 grey wag
8 sand martin
Thursday, 15 October 2009
again with the little light remaining i spent it on trying to see the bittern,down at the west hide again as it gives the best scope over the lake and later in the day a better light over the lake.
a single curlew was in the field behind the hide,on entering the hide i was pointed onto a kingfisher on the stick and even though the light was getting bad i tried,
see what i mean dark. as i had heard of a jack snipe showing well from the west hide/concrete hide i decided to take a look.well there wasent one from the west hide so on my lonesome i went into the water rail hide,well no jack snipe here either.a few teal were close in in one of the cutouts in the reeds and then the 'pigs' started squealing in the reeds in front of me,then one appeared,right in front of me,on the near shore,stunningly close but after leaving my scope and camera in with my dad,i was left with a dilemma,run and get my camera or watch it,
i decided to watch it,and only after 5 mins of great views of this usually sculky species i went and collected my scope and camera,spent the next 20 mins in the hide with the water rail still showing but it was too dark and i couldent get a film.. bugger...
while watching the rail i made regular scans for that dam bittern,but yet again no sign,now its driving me up the rails(see what i did there),thats over 2 months of residence and 9 visits to upton and still no sign,surely soon,
3 pochard were asleap in the shoveler flock.
highlighs for the day are:
3 little grebe
375c canadian goose
4 water rail
4 cettis warbler
Monday, 5 October 2009
highlight of trip were:
4 cattle egret
2 little egret
146 barnacle goose
4 golden plover
3 spotted redshank
1 common gull
on way down
a really great day and now so close to that 200 milestone
upton warren,with not long again untill dusk(getting to that time of year) so as no news was coming out the flashes and i still want to log that bloody bittern,so the moors it was,i knew that a pintail was showing there anyway so even more of an incentive to go,went again to the west hide.nodody was in the hide so i tokk a look in the log book,up there in BIG letters was barnicle goose with pintail and 1 wigeon in smaller letters.i scanned the goose flock and in there was a barnicle goose.easy to spot with its small size compared to the canadians.i took a few videos in the gloom:
i then scanned where the snipe was last time and i located 3 wigeon,all in eclipse plumage,and with these was the female pintail,only the secod ive seen(well my first was a pair),3 water rail were calling and a snipe was giving good views to the right of the hide
3 cetti's warblers were singing and 1 shown briefly,highlights here were:
1 barnicle goose
3 water rail(h)
3 cetti's warbler.
and still no sign of that bloody bittern