Let me know when that tide's coming in won't you

Let me know when that tide's coming in won't you

Saturday, 13 July 2019

Pennington Flash

These pictures are from a few weeks back when I took a visit to Pennington Flash, which is one of the premier birding sites in the North West. Such a varied array of habitats, it attracts so many different species.
It was a bright morning (always a bonus) and there was lots to see. There were Reed and Sedge Warblers in the reed beds. A Kingfisher zipped past while I was watching some of the many Grey Herons, and the main water held hundreds of Swifts, Swallows and Sand Martins. It was a fantastic Spring morning.

A male Blackcap was letting everyone know he was around.


Common Terns taking a rest in front of Horrock's hide.


Great crested Grebe.

A juvenile Grey Heron, and some Lapwings behind.

Little ringed plover.


Stock Dove

Something I try every year. Catching a Swift in flight. It's not very easy.


Thursday, 27 June 2019

Flycatchers

Two days and two different Flycatchers. I was up early at the weekend and headed to Derbyshire, where I was treated to some lovely Flycatchers. Saturday brought me the Pied Flycatcher, busy feeding it's young that I think would have been very close to fledging. I only saw the female once and very briefly. The male was doing most of the work (as usual. No not really, we all know that's not true) I'm so pleased to have seen that they had some young. I was there a few weeks previously when they were just prospecting the nest site and making it all comfy. A successful time for them I hope.








Sunday brought me some sunshine and this time some Spotted Flycatchers. These, being a little later to arrive were only just checking out a nest site and bringing in some nesting material. They were very showy, which was a good thing, as my previous sighting this year at Leasowe was all under canopy and behind branches. Hopefully these have been successful also, and I will try to get back and see how they've done.







Thursday, 20 June 2019

Burton Mere RSPB

RSPB Burton Mere on the Wirral is such a great place for birds of all varieties and it seems to attract something different each time I'm there. I spent a good portion of a day there recently and saw some really great birds. Some of the highlights included a Little Stint and Curlew Sandpiper. These were viewable by scope only, but I had mine and was more than happy to tick these off the year list and watch from afar.
The whole reserve was alive, from tree tops to reed bed to muddy verges to water. It's such a great time of year. I'm already starting to think that it's nearly over and looking forward to April coming once again. I'm wishing my life away now, but blink and you can miss it. So I do try and make the most of this busy period.

This bird is one that is more often than not only ever heard, as it skulks through the undergrowth giving it's very loud and clear call. I was patient on this occasion and had time to wait it out for an actual sighting of this very active Cetti's Warbler. One of the best views I've had of it.

A Great White Egret, used to be very uncommon not so long ago, but is now around Burton regularly.

A lovely male Reed Bunting

A Reed Warbler, which was busy tending to a nest.



Common Whitethroat were very busy and vocal.



A real success story for Burton is that a pair of Spoonbill were nesting on site. Almost unthinkable that they would choose to nest here, but Cattle Egret and Great White Egret are just some of the species that have also made this area of the Dee Estuary their new home.





Friday, 14 June 2019

Linnet - Beeston Regis

About a month or so ago the weather was warm and sunny, and many birds were just pairing up. This is always a good time to see birds out in the open and often on perches. They're staking out their territory and keeping an eye out for what's around.
One bird that was in abundance in Norfolk, was the Linnet. They seemed to be every 1 in 3 birds seen. I'm sure they weren't, but they were everywhere and very showy. Of course, if you have a camera with you this gives ample opportunity to try and get some pictures.

A female in nice morning sunshine.


A nice male in slightly better light.




Sunday, 9 June 2019

Adder - The Snake in the grass

An Easter visit to my parents in Norfolk was just the right time for me to try and find my first ever Adders. I have longed to see one of these snakes in the wild for a very long time. Britain's only venomous snake. At this time of year you can see them coming out from there holes to warm themselves up in the sunshine and find a mate.
I always  thought that these were a biggish sized snake. How wrong I was! They are really very small, and it's no wonder I've not come across one before. I'd have walked straight past it.
This was a real treat for me and I hope I can catch up with them again next year.









Saturday, 8 June 2019

Cemlyn Bay - Anglesey

A trip to Cemlyn Bay on the island of Anglesey was a first for me. I had often wanted to go here in the winter to see the Snow Buntings, but never actually got round to it. A visit in May was just as productive for me though.

I walked around the coastline and initially thought it was a little quiet but then I spotted a bird fly in off the sea and land on some rocks. It had the look of a Curlew but I knew this was much more like a Whimbrel. A quick check in the binoculars confirmed this. The shorter bill, less stocky appearance and the line (supercilium) over the eye. All characteristics of the Whimbrel.
Here is a link to the BTO's ID between Curlew and Whimbrel BTO ID
A good year tick to start the day, and my first decent flight shots of it. They would have been better had it not been so gloomy and raining.






 


This is a Curlew for comparison. Really quite similar to the Whimbrel.

I spotted a group of small waders further round the shore line. These were Dunlin and Turnstones mainly, but there was a larger bird in with them, and this turned out to be a Red Knot in fine summer plumage. I was really pleased to see it in this plumage and another year tick.





Really nice colouration.

Dunlin