Tuesday, 31 December 2013

End of year visits to WWT Martin Mere and surrounding areas.... 27th-29th December 2013.




I have just enjoyed a long weekend visiting WWT  Martin Mere also RSPB's Marshside and Hesketh Out Marsh.

The highlight being the sight and sound of the Whooper Swans at Martin Mere and in surrounding fileds. Lapwing, Golden Plover, Wigeon, Teal, Pintail, Black-tailed Godwit, Starling, Pink-footed Geese and Shelduck were a sheer joy to see and hear in great numbers. Barnacle Geese, Peregrine, Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Golden eye and a special treat was seeing a Great Northern Diver on the water at Marine Lake in Southport. Sea watching was very difficult with the strong winds gusting, it was very hard to keep the tripod still, however distant views of literally thousands of Gulls on the seashore was lovely to see, closer views would have been a bonus!
 
A Ross's Goose at RSPB Marshside was a treat to see, I was informed that where it had arrived from was not known. It was still a delight to see such a pretty Goose.

On arrival at Martin Mere on Friday the wind was very strong with the gusts of wind increasing in speed during the afternoon, this led to the reserve being closed from around 3.00pm as at least one tree was looking to be near to falling.
 
It was a weekend of gusty winds, hail and rain showers and sunshine intermingled with sights and sounds of some superb bird species!

A great weekend 'Up North' to end a good birding year!












 
 
 
 
I wish a  Happy, Healthy, Peaceful and Prosperous New year to all in 2014.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


 

Monday, 23 December 2013

Time to catch up before the year end!

This year has been a funny one for blogging, why, I really do not know! I hope that 2014 will see me posting as and when trips/walks etc happen and not at least 2 months down the line!

Anyway, time to catch up on the present year.

September.

My first visit  to the Island of Jersey was most enjoyable. A delightful island and small enough to circumnavigate the island in one day, stopping at interesting and scenic areas along the way.  Several places of interest were visited and the International Air Display ( part of Battle of Britain Week) was a thrill to see and of course hear! The scenery as we drove around the Island was stunning in many areas! Birds were in all truthfullness thin on the ground, the Autumn migration had been but a trickle through of birds but had started to gain towards the end of the holiday week.  Early morning walks gave Rock Pipit, Little Egret, Curlew, Oystercatcher and Gull species on the shoreline and perched on rocks as they waited for the tide to recede.
I hope to return to Jersey sometime in the future.


Grosnez Castle Ruin.
 
 

 
Noirmont Point.

 
 
Jersey Lily.

 
 
 
The Red Arrows.

 
 
Wheatear at Noirmont Point.

 
 
 
Jersey Cattle grazing at St. Ouen's Pond.

 
 
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October.
 
I sighted my first of the Autumn Fieldfares over Whittington fields on the 12th.
 

 
 
 
Parrot Waxcap growing in my front lawn was a nice find!
 
 

 
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Portugal Holiday.
 
 
Bath White.

 
 
 
Praying Mantis
 

 
 
Clouded Yellow.

 
 
Crested Lark.

 
 
Cattle and Cattle Egret.


 
 
Zitting Cisticola.

 
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November.
 
 
Slimbridge 10th & 11th.
 
Highlights were the Common Cranes from the 'Great Crane Project', they were a treat to see fairly close with 5 being viewed at one point. There was also a 'wild' non-ringed Crane that had arrived at the reserve. Greylag, Canada and Barnacle Geese were around in good numbers but I had no luck finding a White-fronted or a Brent Goose.
A distant Green-winged Teal was a Lifer. Spot the Teal in the digi-scoped pic time!
 


 
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A Mandarin Duck was delight to see on and out of the water at Brake mill Pools on the 28th.
 
 

 
 

 

 
 
 
 
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December.
 
A Grey Heron has visited my garden pond a few times and thankfully not able to reach the fish in my pond!
 
 
A male Blackcap was a welcome sight in my garden on the 18th. I have the past few years seen them much earlier in December, no doubt the mild weather delayed their need to start visiting gardens for food.
 
 
One more post of short trip 'Up North' is planned before the end of the year.......weather permitting of course with the trip.
 
 I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Friday, 25 October 2013

Summer 2013.....August.

A glorious summer with ample warm/hot sunshine on offer for all who cared to enjoy it! For me butterflies were the stars of the show this summer, good to eventually see some species back in good numbers.

A few of my favourite images taken during August.