Sunday, 31 January 2010

A light in the black

The safari says you can't beat a bit of Rainbow. On Frank's pre-dawn walk there was the first hint of light in the early morning sky. The days are drawing out and spriing is getting a little bit nearer.
This fat fella was nowhere to be seen yesterday when the Big Garden Bird Watch was in full swing. But can you see a line of white on the top of the fence? Yes we had another smattering of snow overnight.
Pic is a bit hazy due to dirt and reflection through the kitchen window. Well it is winter and our window cleaner is probably living it up on the Costas!
A posh pub lunch in the countryside with some good mates was followed by a gentle stroll up the valley. We were hoping to get a few new ones for the year and had a comprehensive target list to take us well over 100. But we ended up clinging to Frank as there were sheep everywhere - he'll get himself shot one day if we're not careful! So we didn't see a single bird all the way up the hill apart from a Kestrel and the Pheasants which haven't been stopped any lead yet.
At the top the stream had a wacky ice formation sat right in the middle of the flow.
The way down was even more bird-less and negative thoughts of no new ticks started to creep to the fore. Stuck on 99...nooooo. When all was just about lost with only a few more minutes walk back to our cars (no Land Rover today) we caught a flash of movement over the stream...Dipper; the 100 is up...phew! Then it was joined by another. The last bit of the walk goes past a bit of a conifer plantation and we think we heard a Tawny Owl. After a few pathetic attempts at hooting and it answered back...(101). Job done.
Plenty more out there in the local area for the rest of the winter, including the lifer, but we might have to wait until the next high tides to go for that one.
A hundred in the bag after only one month but what of the whole year? The 'easy, should be able to get without too much trouble and we'll be miffed if we don't reach' target is 175. Then there is the should reach with a bit of luck 190 and finally need some twiching and some luck target of 200. Wonder where we'll end up?
Where to next? Back to the patches I expect.
In the meantime let us know if there are targets in your outback.

1 comment:

Monika said...

Nice ones Dave! Congrats on passing 100.