Saturday, 16 October 2010
Wednesday, 6 October 2010
|The Flood this morning, looking approx. North-West with the constant roar of the M6 in the background, taken with 80mm lens.|
As can be seen the flood has to be worked more or less using a scope because of the distance.
Anyway back to the plot as they say, Last night my wife went out with the dogs and all three came back soaked as it rained very hard while she was out , and she came back with the story, hail-stones as big as golf balls ---? and I said balls too. However on opening my peepers this morning the sun was doing a great job, although I have to say standing up at the flood the wind was a bit on the icy side.
The flood has been a bit dead of late with very little activity apart from the usual flock of Lapwings, however this morning there was a little more of interest. The usual flock of Lapwings were there, although the whole lot lifted at one point and flew round as if they were going to leave but then circled back and settled again. Mixed in with them was 6 Black-headed Gulls, 1 Lesser Black-backed Gull and 1 Common Gull. Next I found the first Snipe then another, and so it went up to 7 . Then I covered the ground again and this time counted 10, the ground in places is very bobbly so its easy for Snipe to pop up and down , in and out of sight. So I covered the ground again and this time found 17 fantastic, some sitting out in the sun preening others having a doze and yet others busy feeding , and all looking beautiful in the sun with their marking showing and being well highlighted I've said it before and I have to repeat myself, they really are the most beautiful bird.
I'm doing a sort of PS. here to explain that when ever I write a blog I more often than not give the full names of any bird or animal that I mention. this may seem a bit old fashioned to the hard core of birders these days but I try to think of our foreign visitors, as they may not be able to get their heads around the likes of Mipit and other such abbreviated versions. Anyway just thought I would drop that in, lesson over enjoy.
|This is just a fraction of the wood pigeons |
that was feeding in this field, try counting them.
This morning I looked in at the flood, not a lot going on, about 200 Lapwing and that was about it. I had the Westies with me and little Misty managed to find some dung to roll in. So for the second day she had to have a shower when I got her home, great.
After lunch my Daughter and I set off for a walk, starting at Thacka and then following footpaths in and around Newton Rigg. Firstly we had a look at the new ponds at the flood alleviation scheme, and it was good to see they had grown in size after all the recent rain, it will be great if they stay this way like the flood.
The first sightings with the bins was a flock of 50 Starlings perched on phone wires, this was quickly followed by a small flock of 20 Goldfinch which settled in an Elder bush, but when I tried to get a bit closer for a pic they took to the air again.
We had to shelter from time to time as one or two heavy showers floated over.
At one point a Kestrel could be seen at a distance, and a Buzzard gave us a close flyby to land in a nearby tree. Robins and Chaffinches could be heard continuously on our travels, and then in one field we came across about 20-30 Red-legged Partridge, possibly recently released for shooting.
On passing the new ponds a Thacka on our way back home, there was already Mallard beginning to settle on them, fingers crossed.