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

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

Thursday 30 August 2012


For a few years now I've been chasing this bird around the North West with no joy at all. I've researched where they may be at what time of year. I have read other peoples accounts of where they saw them, with happiness for them but green with envy for me. Due to a combination of time constraints, bad weather and bad planning by me, I've always missed out. Until the 28th August 2012. The day I saw my first Whinchat. Two in fact. My pictures are not great at all, but they are OK record shots of a bird that I have found ridiculously hard to find.


Tuesday 28 August 2012


I've just spent a week in North Wales on a family holiday. Most of my birding was done with just the naked eye as it's really only me that gets any enjoyment from it. So I rarely got the camera out, but I did for about an hour one morning while looking for waders and anything that may be around.
I ventured to Kinmel Bay in Rhyl and came across 100+ Sandwich Terns that were sat on the beach, but at quite some distance away. A couple of Ringed Plovers, a Little Egret, a Redshank and many Oystercatchers were the only highlights. Nothing out of the ordinary but it gave me something to point my camera at for a short time.

I think this Redshank was a juvenile. It's legs were rather more yellow/orange than the adults red.

Sunday 26 August 2012

Pennington Flash

I spent a few hours at Pennington Flash in Manchester at the weekend. There were plenty of birds around, but just too far away for my camera. Still, I got good views through the bins of Snipe, Common Sandpiper, Kingfisher, Willow Tit, Willow Warbler and many more.
Just a few shots below for you.

Great Crested Grebe



A very scruffy looking Blackcap

Saturday 25 August 2012

North Wales coast.

Not a great deal of birding activity on my holiday, but here are a few shots I did manage of the various wildlife in North Wales.

A Curlew on the Conwy estuary.

 I think this is a Mink scampering across the beach.

It was harassed all the way by a group of Jackdaws.
A rabbit that my daughter Eleanor thought was very cute.

Kashmiri goats on the Great Orme

Sunday 12 August 2012

Dippers, again

Well it all seems very quiet on the birding front of late. This morning I went out with high hopes of seeing many different varieties, but struggled to find anything out of the ordinary. I did manage to come across more Dippers though. So I spent most of my time trying to photograph these again. I realise my last post was about Dippers too, but they're not easy to capture, so I make the most of it when I do. Here are a few of my shots.

Tuesday 7 August 2012

Dipper de doo dah....

I came across a family of Dippers on Sunday. I wasn't expecting them as I got out of the car, but I soon picked up on their call and tracked them down. I think this is a well developed juvenile. I've not come across one with such an unusual white marking, very low down. Any suggestions are gratefully accepted.
It does seem to have a rather unusual orange digit on it's left foot. It appears to be a bit swollen and hopefully it won't cause it too many problems. It certainly seemed fine when I was there.

This was taken at Etherow Park earlier this year. You can really see the difference in the plumage of both.

A Kestrel waiting patiently for movement in the grass below.

Friday 3 August 2012

Cute but not bird friendly

At Danebower I came face to face with a cute Stoat (a member of the weasel family). At first I was shocked as we shared a moment staring at each other, motionless, trying to work out what it was we were both looking at. He moved first and disappeared before I could get to the camera.
Last week I was alerted to a Wheatear making a very unusual call. On closer inspection, the Stoat appeared again. Running in and out of the rocks on the slopes of the quarry, this cute looking mammal is not good for birds in this area. It feeds on the eggs and young of those that nest in stone walls and rock crevices. Birds like the Wheatear and Ring Ouzel are always great to see, but the Ring Ouzel is struggling in this area and it doesn't need the intervention of these cute lookers. Nice to see, but I don't want to see them too often. (No offence Mr Stoat)