Thursday, 30 June 2011

An Enjoyable Failure

Not two words that normally go together I know - but despite failing to find what I wanted this morning, I felt the 5am wake up was still worthwhile.

Quail was my target bird on this fine summer's morning, they seem to be having a bumper year this year. I spent two hours listening from gateways in all corners of the patch - and beyond out towards Honiton Golf Course - but had no luck. With all the suitable habitat we have here, it surely has to be worth another attempt!?

A Buzzard that allowed me to stop the car underneath it for a change!

I then headed to the private woodland near Colyton I survey monthly. All was as it should be, with the usual woodland critters chirping away, but then all of a sudden the air came alive with Crossbill calls! I soon clocked a flock of 18 of these 'chunky chuppers' flying west over a woodland clearing, and about half an hour later I heard them again (or some more?) in another part of the wood. This is the second biggest flock I've ever seen on patch - result!

These fired me up to stay out a little longer, so I then had a sweep of the river. Four Lapwing were on Colyford Scrape, but there was no sign of yesterday's four Blackwits. On the Estuary, my first juvenile Med Gull of 2011 was with a dozen or so Black-headed Gulls just up from the tram sheds...

Photo taken with full optical and digital zoom on the Lumix, it looks ok at this size but I wouldn't bother enlarging it!

A quick scan of the sea showed nothing, but a still rather high tide tempted me to look at Black Hole Marsh. On the marsh were the usual summer selection of adult and young waterfowl, plus my first Common Sandpiper of the autumn...

I really don't know why I've posted this photo - it's pants!

There was a very nice surprise in amongst the juv Pied Wagtails feeding in the north west corner of the marsh - a Redstart!! It was actually feeding on the mud, picking at the same insects the Wagtails were feasting on, and using the wooden draw bridge to perch up on. It was a bit bizarre really, but very much appreciated - my earliest ever 'autumn' Redstart.

It was really nice to be out birding again, it feels like ages since I was last out and about on patch! The last week of my life has been hectic, first I was ill, then my phone broke and finally I was out of action for a couple of days due to a trip to Birmingham... I am very much looking forward to a few days of normality!

1 comment:

  1. Quail is my favorite bird because of the beautiful voice i simply love the God creature thanks for sharing this information with us.

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