Friday 30 May 2008

East Yorks Is Mint!

Bit of a rubbish title but hey! Creativity and night shifts dont run side by side. Be thakful young reader that I have the energy to regail todays tale at all.
A trip to see one of the many scarce/rares that ive missed in my move got me good views of a Male Red-backed Shrike at the Old Tip in Filey. Little else of note other than a JTW521 who promptly informed me of some bits and bats at Old Fall. Journeyed down to Flam where a dip on a Great Reed Warbler/ Savi's Combo was eased by a female Golden Oriole flying into the plantation. A Nightingale flushed along the hedge and I have a feeling the small flycatcher with the Spotted I was watching was a fluffed female Red-throated but I cant say for certain with only brief views. Some song from a Marsh pretending to be a Swallow didnt make up for not seeing the bird but work called and I had to leg it. The whole hedge was dripping with birds and everything felt rare, shame I didn't quite have the time to put the effort in but a couple of lifers and year ticks are very nice.

Tuesday 20 May 2008

One more...

oh alright then

All together now, Nellie the elephant packed her trunk...

Wheres the birds?

Sorry, complete lack of birding over last few days has mean no updates, but here for you delectation is the new Ting Tings video (it got to bloody no1, how did a decent song do that). Shes fit. The songs Hypnotic. P.s. ive got an exam on Thursday and am moving Friday so will be very slow in updating cos i will ned to get re-wired to t'internet. But there is a couple of Scottish trips to anticipate my loyal readership. Ciao for now

Thursday 15 May 2008

Up with the lark

Leaving my slumber at the disgusting hour of 5am, i trotted off to selby to do my BBS transects. Dull as with the highlight, if you can call it that a single song thrush. Called in at a secret location on the way back and got amazing views of a Woodlark to about 15 feet. I only noticed the bird when it was flushed by a jogger. Bonkers. Also saw a Green Woodie yaffling away, a few Tree Pipits mobbing a Cuckoo, a Great Spot bounding away and a family of Stonechats including the male feeding the youngsters. Amazing.

Wednesday 14 May 2008


Dont ever take fish ecology. It blows big style. Think i may have made a complete mess of the exam. Not that you give a shit, all you want to know is which birds ive been chasing round yorkshire this week. Well the answer is none. Yet. Went for the Golden O at Flamboro today but that was diptastic but did have a sexy male White Wag land on the path infront of me. A couple of Garden Warblers were the sum total of my payoff. Also called in at Swine Moor en route. A Greenshank and a single Wood Sandpiper (no flocks) were the prime pickings. The water is rapidly disappearing and the heat haze was a bugger.

Sunday 11 May 2008

subbuteo and a hat-trick

Thats a Hobby to me and you. Or 2 of em. Thoughts turned to finding my own hawking falcons after yesterdays skor of the Red-foot. Local patched it and had a male & female aerial jousting at a great height over the pool hide followed by a later sighting up near the tower hide. A cuckoo that couldn't sing properly was a second site tick of the day for me, being very obvious and flying around the pool. Didnt see one last year and they are all over now! Also on the pool was a striking New Zealand Shoveller, a very pretty bird. Unfortunately it was getting involved with the local birds so lets hope it doesnt manage to pull one eh! Down at the pool I saw a male Garganey fly across the marsh and then a second bird was seen at distance in the haze preening also a drake. And that was the hat-trick, the third site tick of the day (Hobby, Cuckoo and Garganey). Year list marches onto 191. Site list is now on nelson. One arm, one eye, one bollock.

Saturday 10 May 2008

Red-footed Stunner

Just got back from Pugney's where I spent a couple of hours in the company of a beautiful lady. A stunning female Red-footed Falcon, a lifer in every sense was hawking away around the trees to the south east of the boating lake showing beautifully. A few common terns were the only other birds of note. A brief view of a possible Arctic was nice but didnt look too hard. No WWBT. The falcon showed down to 15 feet at times eating on the wing and occasionally getting hassled by a gull or corvid. A cuckoo bubbled in the background.

Yesterday I had another vagrant from southern Europe, this time a nice male Woodchat Shrike. Again a very obliging bird but a bit of a hit and run for me (was still late for work). This time it was by canal scrape, Spurn point. Had several in Spain last month but they taste sweeter in Yorkshire!

Tuesday 6 May 2008


Drake Garganey. Not hiding. North Duffield Carrs. Beaut. Not like the invisible 7 at Wheldrake. Bastards.

Monday 5 May 2008

Adder nuff

A message from Mike (Skink1978 fom bf), had me scampering to Allerthorpe common to search for Adders. Had a corking couple of hours with a self found first in the form of a three inch baby snake. I thought there must be loads if I could find one before any real effort was put in. This was reinforced when we got onto the common proper as Mike found a super male snake actively hunting. It got a bit warm from then so the snakes were too active and the tins too hot and thus we saw no further adders but a few Common Lizards. I was very chuffed. Went up to Castle Howard after and had amazing views of three Black Terns over the grea lake. Gorgeous birds in full dress. Best bit was pointing them out to a couple who were new to birdwatching and seeing there mouths drop. Fantastic.

Sunday 4 May 2008

Throne Moor Bf Meet

Up well before the lark at 3 am for an early morning walk on Thorne Moor via Crowle Moor. Still a little shell shocked after an Indian the previous evening experienced with a rubbish Sauvignon Blanc. Got to the service station at Goole listening to some good time Drum and Bass tracks because I was too confused as to how to change the channel. One track sounded like a Hoopoe calling. At the service station a Corn Bunting was calling away in the dark - felt positively Mediterranean. Got on site for 5 on the nail to look for Nightingales. Cut a short story long we failed on that score but manage on others.
Racing through Crowle Moor, there were a variety of Warblers including Grasshopper Warbler and Whitethroat which were both year ticks. Got views of lots of Whitethroats in the end and a few Groppers. Once in Yorkshire we cottoned onto 4 or 5 Turtle Doves which were a good find and a few Cuckoos (had about7 or 8 during the day). A Marsh Harrier passed overhead and other warbler year ticks were Reed Warbler and Garden Warbler. No Black Terns unfortunatly. Plenty of hirundines about and Swifts but no Hobbies to harass em - even though we tried to string Swifts, Cuckoos and Kestrels. The ten of us were on the moor for about 7 hours and nailed a few Tree Pipits and walked many many miles. Red Deer and Roe Deer were seen around the reserve and a special but unmentionable breeding bird was seen (but not one I knew about beforehand), so well done Lawts for that. A Willow Tit was a nice surprise. Once we had gathered ourselves we headed to North Cave.
No Black Terns as the reports flooded in form everywhere else. John (Hull City) and Lawts (Leicester City) were disappointed due to football matter but we made ample compensation with a male Kingfisher, displaying Little Ringed Plovers, breeding plumage Dunlin, Common Sandpiper and Lesser Whitethroat goiving nice scope views. As Keith cursed we noticed the Pied plague were amongst us with Avopigs everywhere. At one point I managed to string a Greylag as a Numenius sp. OOpps. No other real surprises here other than a Bacon Butty. We decided to press on to a secret loaction for a crack at Woodlark. None of those as the local bat group were out and about but another Cuckoo, numerous Red-legged Partridge were nice. After a few guys headed home a Lesser Spotted Woodpecker was seen before flying high in the canopy and then bounding away across a clearing. Fantastic! Probably missed loads of details but a cool day was had and 8 year birds added.

Friday 2 May 2008

you Swine!

Had a trip back to Swine Moor on Montag after visiting t'old garage in Hull. Got some storming White Wags, a few Swift for the year and a UK lifer in the form of a couple of Wood Sandpiper. Also a Whimbrel was nice plus a few Yellow Wags including one thatlooked like a female Blue-headed/ Channel wag. Sexcellent.


Had a good survey on the conntrol site with Arctic and Great Skua, loadsa Kits, 3 species of Tern and rather incongruously another 3 Carrion Crows headed out to sea. Also a probable Manxie which i cocked up (was distant). Also got some spanking shots of the Glauc on Saturday evening and a few semi decent ones of a male Wheatear but i will have to see whether I get them back from IECS before I post em.

How birds and brains become mutually exclusive

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