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

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

Friday 26 April 2024

Summer Migrants

It's that time again! I popped to one of my favourite places last week on the hunt for some of our Summer migrants, and I was delighted to be able to catch up with a few of them. The numbers are still a bit thin on the ground, but I'm hoping that it is still early in the season and that more will follow. Pied Flycatchers were the first to be located in their usual spot, but only two males around at the moment and no sign of the females. 

One or two Redstarts were singing and then finally located feeding along a wall. A Tree Pipit was also singing and parachuting down to it's favoured tree, and it's song echoed across the valley. Willow Warblers were singing everywhere and were by far the most common migrant in song. Lovely to have them all back and hopefully I will be catching up with them many more times before they once again depart our shores.

Pied Flycatcher

Common Redstart

Willow Warbler

Tree Pipit

Wednesday 17 April 2024

Cattle Egret - Redemsere

A bird dropped in to Redesmere recently (two in fact) that does not usually. I have seen Great White Egret and Little Egrets here, but never the smaller cousin, the Cattle Egret. Last year there were a few hanging around locally with the cattle herd, and I managed to see them, but it was really unexpected to see this pair. Due to the very wet weather of late, most fields here are turning in to marshland and so providing different opportunities to passing birds. It's my only explanation as to why they turned up here. All the same, it was great to see them and even the sun shone so I could get some better shots.

Cattle Egret

Thursday 11 April 2024


A cold Spring day along the Holkham fresh marsh, and there was plenty to be seen. Brent geese were in good numbers, and there were plenty of waterfowl. Ruff seemed to appear out of thin air, as every time I turned round there were more. Egyptian Geese were making one hell of a racket, and one pair seemed to be nest building high up in the pines. 

On the beach and shoreline, a handful of Sanderling were scuttling about whilst being ably supported in numbers by the loud calling Oystercatchers. Although the sun was out, like many walks at Holkham, it was very much on the cold side.

Brent Goose (dark-bellied)

Egyptian Goose, and a few Ruff.

The lovely Sanderling at the waters edge.

 A pair of Wigeon on the marsh.

Sunday 7 April 2024

Migration Time

A couple of weeks ago, I headed up into the hills and moors above Macclesfield, as I often do at this time of year, in search of some early migrant activity. As other birds seemed to be about a week ahead of schedule on previous years I took the gamble and went looking for Ring Ouzel. It was cold up there, and what seemed like a long wait and search of about 15 minutes paid dividends. A lovely male Ring Ouzel was feeding below on the rocky slopes. These birds are really special to watch and I'm so fortunate to be able to view them each year. Hopefully this one pairs up and manages to breed successfully.

Male Ring Ouzel

A supporting cast of Wheatears, and Meadow Pipits were nice to have as company and the Wheatear is such a handsome photogenic bird, as it hops along and poses nicely on mounds, rocks or fence posts. I counted at least 3, but it was hard to keep up as they were constantly moving around .
This amazing male was good enough to pose not too far away from me.