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 28 October 2021

Black Redstart

There had been a Black Redstart not too far away from where I live for a few days, and I felt compelled to make the effort to go and see it. I usually see these birds high up on the rooftops of buildings in Manchester during the summer, so I thought it would be good to see one at a more reasonable height and position for my neck.

This little fellow was hopping around the roof of the Cat and Fiddle pub on the border of Cheshire and Derbyshire. I didn't locate it on my first attempt, so returned the next morning to find it. It hopped up into view after about 10 minutes of searching and then we just stood looking at each other for a while. So I thought it rude not to take a few pictures. Here is the little beauty.

Female/Immature Black Redstart.

You can just make out the red of the tail in this light.

Friday 22 October 2021

Signs of Winter

 I took an afternoon walk just to get out of the house last weekend. I didn't really know where I was going or what I was going to find. It had rained most of the morning and that hadn't helped my mood. So I ended up at what is becoming one of my favourite local spots. Lapwing Hall Lane in Chelford. There's a really good mix of woodland, scrub, farmland, hedgerow and a very large lake that attracts a good variety, especially in winter.

I could hear Redwings overhead and it wasn't long before I caught a glimpse of a few. They had probably arrived in the week for their winter stay here. I carried on to a wooded area that is very good in the colder months. First bird I could hear was a Bullfinch, followed closely by another Redwing and a Goldcrest. Then I spotted some other birds flitting around. I was delighted to get a small group of Bramblings in my sights. I'd not seen any this year, so was pleased to add them to the year list. Great birds, and I was really pleased to see them here. I was able to stand and watch them for 20 minutes before I'd had my fix and moved on.


I continued my walk and leant on a gate to see what was across a stubbly field. I thought I was going to be looking at a large flock of Canada Geese, but it was obvious very quickly that I had a good number of Pink footed Geese in with them.  I'd seen a few large skeins fly over recently, but these were the first of the year that I'd seen down on the ground. Winter has arrived (in bird terms) and I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

The Pink footed Geese are the ones with the darker heads, with Canada and Greylag at the back.

Unusually, there were still some signs of the summer months with some butterflies and dragonflies still on the wing. 

Small Copper Butterfly

Comma Butterfly