Took delivery of my new scope - an opticron HR 66 45R with an 18-54x lens yesterday. Obviously I wanted to go test it out so off i toddled. Unfortunately it turned up later than I hoped so I stayed local, Noth Duffield Carrs followed by Wheldrake Ings.
Recently reported at North Duffield, a couple of Bewick's Swans with the resident Whooper herd. I found them nearly a mile south of the main road between NDC and Bubwith. Without the scope I would have been lost as the size difference was masked by the spread of the swans. Eventually I pulled out a couple of Bewick's from about 15 Whoopers and a umber of Mute's. At one stage I had 2 Bewick's, 4 Whoopers and a Mute Swan in the same scope view and a pretty cool illustration of differences it was too. the Bewick's was a year and Yorkshire tick for me, so I was well chuffed (hadn't seen one since 2004 - in Northumberland).
Also at North Duffield. Not a lot - good numbers of Pintail and Shoveller plus the usual finches and the like. A single Whooper stayed on the reserve and a flyover Collared Dove was a reserve tick. No Marsh Harriers present despite being in the area the previous week (probably migrants?). Some crap photos will be added asap! Discovered the new eyepiece isnt really digiscope friendly with the crappy compact but I hbad a bash. Also added to the reserve list (or overlooked previously) were Curlew and Common Gull. Must be an aberation. Was pretty cold at this point so I headed to Wheldrake to see what I could see.
At Wheldrake things never really got going, a mammal tick in the form of Roe Deer bolting across the Ings was as good as it got. The gulls didn't come in until late on, but along with Ingsbirder from BF a good grilling produced precisely no white-wingers, although a few LBBG of both graelsii and intermedius races were present. The Herring gulls had a few more nominate birds in but were still largely 'northern' type and as a whole the roost was much smaller with very few small gulls. A pair of Goldeneye were the highlights from a duck/goose/swan perspective. Winter thrushes chacked over the top but nothing else happened. Nice to get out mind.
Today I mostly bought the Leona Lewis single. Not for me. For the kids in my wifes class. Honest. The new Editors album was my purchase. And i thoroughly recommend it to those miserable bastards like me.