Sunday, 8 April 2018

Back in Black

5 scoter year it is then.

Record shots from Holy Island - my 7D doesn't seem to like the 2.0 extender... Spoonbill at Druridge was a nice bonus.

Sunday, 1 April 2018


Nice White-spotted Bluethroat on the shore at Newbiggin this morning. Can't beat a bit of rubbish to enliven a distant record shot.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

450 days

A mere 450 days for my UK list to increase by one - provided by the drake American White-winged Scoter off Musselburgh on 25th. A welcome and somewhat unexpected addition. Supporting cast was three further scoter species - velvet, common and a single drake surf.

Meagre video stills above... records at best!

All jolly good.

2018 has been a quiet start - with some nice padders though through months 1 - 3:

Glaucous, Iceland, Mediterranean, Little Gulls
Great Northern Divers (with untickable views of White-billed and a further near miss in March)
Hawfinches, Marsh Tit, Dipper
Local Ring-necked Parakeet
Great Grey Shrike
Common Crane
Water Rail (on the Horton Burn - urban Mega!)
Grey Phalarope (2)
Goshawk, Raven, Crossbill.

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Off, On

IOC keeps Mealy on the Redpoll list, so this bird was nice and timely - at Low Lights, in low light.

Sunday, 5 November 2017


Sunny conditions this morning, but much more difficult viewing - until one appeared above us on the path side. Light was tricky, but I'll take it.

Friday, 3 November 2017

11 year itch

January 2006 was the last time I saw a Hawfinch - this morning I was able to see 10! In Northumberland too... Hopefully more to come as the UK sees an invasion in progress. iPhone thru scope pics and video...

A quick look at Big Waters en-route home provided the pair of Red-crested Pochard. 


Saturday, 21 October 2017

Second helpings...

Armed with the trusty DSLR and a cheeky use of the 2.0 extender, combined with a dash of patience...

Thursday, 19 October 2017

A taste of the Med.

An unexpected catch back on the few fortunate to be at East Chevington last weekend, with a mid afternoon re-visit of Bee-eater to Druridge!

Initially not present, the bird flew back in from the north calling to announce its presence as heavy rain subsided. A second county tick for me in a week, following Cetti's Warbler at East Chevington.

Only had my Bins, but not long after folk arrived with scopes, and then finally, Ian Fisher, who kindly lent me a memory card to take some of my own pics through his camera...

The Crowd, The Sun, The Tree, The Bee-eater!

iPhone and Bins

iPhone and handheld telescope


Saturday, 30 September 2017

Unusual Suspects

Wednesdays ' commute home from work was abnormal, with a diversion to Ryhope to see the Scop's Owl that had been found earlier in the day. Armed with only my iPhone, I was dependant upon others generosity to view through optics...

Great view all considering, and perhaps a venture back should the owl remain.

Nearer home, on the return journey, another unanticipated bird - a nightjar - at St Mary's. Still without any optics of my own, other folks Scope's were put to use, even though the subject was roosting a mere few feet away!

Saturday saw a trip north - this time armed with camera and scope...

Goswick GC has held an obliging immature Long-tailed Skua this week - and some crippling views were obtained. Seems this bird has taken a fancy to try and eat golf balls - pecking furiously! Yellow-browed Warbler also present.

The return journey saw a pit stop at Stag Rocks, where only one of the Black Terns was picked up offshore - thankfully for me it was the White-winged.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017


Time has been a premium lately...

Ruddy Duck - May, Northumberland (iPhone)

Great White Egret - June, Newton-by-the-Sea (iPhone)

A week away... Portugal...

Then back in the County - and an elusive County Tick for me...

Night Heron, Whittle Dene (iPhone)