The Safari enjoyed a cracking Christmas Day yesterday but without much in the way of wildlife. Our motorway trip to family on the South-side gave us three Buzzards versus two Kestrels. Our late night venture forth with Frank saw a Christmas Peregrine roosting on the tower.
This morning we forewent breakfast and headed straight out to the moss in the anticipation that the Bean Geese were still present - they seem to be fairly settled but you never know. This is a species we've never seen in the Fylde before and only once in Lancashire and that sighting nearly 20 years ago! Fortunately they were (205)...our thanks go to those birders who have been giving detailed directions as we doubt if we'd have found the site otherwise.
Arriving on site we were somewhat relieved to see a very small flock of geese over in the corner of the field, so we didn't have to check through hundreds or even thousands of Pink Footed Geese to find them, just one of the six is a Pink Foot...isn't it great when birding's this easy!The Mute Swans were only a few metres away on the other side of the ditch and totally disinterested in us. Also around were a few Skylarks including a little sub-song.
The pics don't do the birds justice, those orange legs were brighter than the satsuma's we left out for Santa and Reindeers! - Nicely marked tertials too...but shortly after this they turned and flew off right into the sun and we were unable to follow them without risking losing our retinas.
As we were leaving to see if we could either track them down again or find a flock of White Fronted Geese we saw some birders approaching, minutes too late. It turned out to be some friends we've not seen for too many years! After quick Christmassy catch-up they went to see if the Bean Geese had just gone one or two fields further down the path and we drove off across the moss.
We couldn't find any geese at all. A drive down the bumpiest lane for miles still didn't give us a flock of geese. We did see a small flock of geese in flight in the distance which may or may not have been our quarry.
Shoulda used the wipers but could let go of the camera to flick the switch!!!
Getting back on the road - which isn't much better to be honest but doesn't have the puddles - we met up with SB coming the other way, they'd had a Merlin not long after we left them and then set off on what was likely to be a wild goose chase.
So what did Santa bring? Someone obviously thinks the food at base camp might be a little bland ;-)
We might need a few glugs of those sauces when we come to attempt these -
- the 'nasty surprise is tripe! Oh joy tripe filled white chocolate...can't hardly wait!!! Anyone care to drop by and have a taste??? Thought not.Where to next? Looking forward to a Seasonal South-side Safari Extravaganza tomorrow.
In the meantime let us know how kind Santa has been in your outback.