Monday, 28 April 2014

Wryneck, Whitley Bay

Enjoyed superb views of the Wryneck at the Whitley Bay Crematorium this afternoon...

Sunday, 20 April 2014

"L"easter Sunday

With the moderate success of Saturday I headed out round the doors early again today. Noticeably cooler early on, and stops at both West Hartford and Arcot were devoid of any interest.

Up the coast, Druridge was apparently garganey-less though there were plenty of shoveler...

East Chevington eventually yielded the summer plumage black-necked grebe, one of three species available, with little and perhaps six great-crested too. An immature male marsh harrier drifted through, but hoped for sandwich tern etc were elsewhere.

Cresswell pitstop on the way home enabled two avocet to be added to the Northumberland year-list.

Reports of 2 common crane flying north got me back out at 1230, and an optimistic attempt to pick them up over West Hartford was soon kicked out of me, though the temperature had increased a bit.

Late afternoon provided another opportunity to confirm that there wasn't a great deal to see or hear at both West Hartford and Arcot, with highlights being 10+ sand martin, ever increasing numbers of willow warbler and the prospect of booze back at home this evening...

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Wits and Wood

Earlish morning saunter to West Hartford to pick up the two early morning black-tailed godwit (looking very Icelandic) backed up with a pair of gadwall, Canada geese, mixed group of h and lbb gulls.

At Arcot two grasshopper warbler, willows and chiff, blackcap, sand Martin, swallow gave a summery feel, while both great spotted (2) and male green woodpecker vocal and visual. 

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Big (r)egrets

Some numpties in the fields of West Hartford curtailed an evening visit, so Arcot seemed a good bet for sand Martin - and indeed it was, with perhaps 20 hawking the pond.

A few pochard (no ferruginous!) and tufted duck were joined by 2 Canada geese, which, to their merit, managed to flush a hidden GREAT WHITE EGRET from the south west corner. The egret flew up and landed in the dead trees frequented by the early 2000s osprey and proceeded to survey the surrounds for a mere 10 - 12 minutes, sufficient time for STH & GM to arrive before it flew off north west.

No camera, just the phone, and a flat battery - incredibly frustrating as I'd just manged to line the iPhone camera to the fence-mounted binoculars with the egret in frame as the battery died! The picture above was just the phone shakely held!

My 3rd time finding this grand egret species in Cramlington...

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Ferruginous Luck

After Sundays belated news of a possible drake Ferruginous Duck at Gosforth Park, it was a pleasant surprise to hear that it was still there today.

A nice bright sunny afternoon and a little wait before reasonable views on the main pool. A tricky county bird, only my second, the last being way back in the 1980s!

Pictures with the digital "bridge" camera...