Sunday, 7 November 2010

Two days running

The Safari was allowed to take Frank back to the nature reserve for the whole of the afternoon.
On arrival a gaggle of birders looked very interesting - what were they grilling? - Answer; a rather bedraggled 1st winter drake Scaup (186). It was diving a great deal and gave only short views in very dull conditions.

A Buzzard overhead was about as typical as they come. Certainly nothing like a Rough Legged Buzzard, one of which was reported from the South-side yesterday. The Cetti's Warblers were strangely quiet today with only one heard all afternoon.
14 Pink Footed Geese flew east at height and thankfully there was no shooting today. Moving round to the little gull watching hide - that's a hide that's small not for watching Little Gulls exclusively). The rangers have cut a narrow gap in through the reeds and we saw a Water Rail nip quickly across it. In the distance we scored a direct hit! Under the apple tree laden with very green apples we once again saw the Otter at about 12.45. Twice in less than 24 hours, don't think we've managed this strike rate before not in Scotland! We put the news out but only the first lad to reach us managed to get on to it before it went back in to the reedbed. Within a couple of minutes the hide was full to bustin with disappointed naturalists.
We made our excuses and had a quick shuffy from the bench but there wasn't much doing other than a top count of eight female Goldeneyes and a solitary Skylark heading southwest.
At the Feeding Station we found five Tree Sparrows including the one with the ring.
On the way round to the Long Eared Owls we watched a Woodcock weave through the trees, didn't see what disturbed it but they don't normally fly during the day. Couldn't find the owl but was shown a pic later by someone who had been successful.
About 1500 Pink Footed Geese landed briefly in the fields at the far end, the noise from them was beautiful.
Then it was down to the embankment to wait for the 45000 or so Starlings, we obviously seriously undercounted yesterday. They didn't disappoint - this is a tiny proportion of the total number.
Frank wasn't bothered by the Starlings he just wanted someone to play ball with him.
We did get another year tick this afternoon - Cliff!!!!
Where to next? Some wild weather with 50-60mph winds due this week so seabirds seabirds seabirds or is it a little late in the year now.
In the meantime let us know what's massing in your outback.
Had acouple of vids planned for today but the puter isn't playing ball with them, so if nowt appens tomorrow you'll get em then.


cliff said...

"We did get another year tick this afternoon - Cliff!!!!"

I bet you'd rather have seen a Waxwing though ;-)

t'was nice bumping into you again Dave, albeit briefly. The tranquility of the reserve was followed by a manic trip to Tescos, I would rather have repeatedly hit my fingers with a meat tenderiser than go to the supermarket on a Sunday afternoon, but a man's got to eat.

Now I've seen your Scaup pic I'm not sure I photod the right one?

Nice pic of Frank btw.


Craig said...

Hi Dave...twice in 24 hours, great stuff.
ill try and get there next weekend.

best wishes,

Monika said...

Congrats on the year tick! What do you think you could reach by the end of the year, 190?

No, it's not too late to look for sea birds - that wind could surely blow something in!