Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Red-Footed Falcon - 26.5.10

A distant photo of the Red-Footed Falcon.

I started work at 7.30am as usual but 15 minutes later a message on my pager told me of a male Red-Footed Falcon at Wilstone Reservoir,Tring. Only trouble being I needed it to stick around for another 8 Hours! Thankfully it did and just after 4pm I was on site watching it perched in a tree albeit distant. Eventually it took flight and started hunting with a single Hobby.

Bombarding Blue Tit - 25.5.10

When I got home I kicked off my shoes and sat on the sofa as usual but then a juvenile Blue Tit flew across the room and nearly hit me in the head!! It probably came from the brood in the wall of next door and flew in the day before when the back door was open.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Apologies - 24.5.10

I've been off work since Thursday with a dodgy neck so unfortunately theres been nothing done birding wise. Th eonly thing to report is the fledging of the Great Tits from the next box in the garden. At least 3 juvs made it.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Dead or Alive - 19.5.10

It was a case of dead and living today as I found a dead juv Robin in one of the barns at the Oxhey depot followed by a dead adult LBB Gull on Cassio Road, Watford and then this afternoon while pulling out bedding on the Cassiobury estate I heard a loud thud on the van and turned round to see a juvenile Starling bounce into the flower bed and one of its parents attacking a Magpie that was obviously trying to attack the juv!

It sat in my hand for a minute or two then flew off into a nearby tree none the worse for its ordeal.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Oxhey - 18.5.10

A Lesser Whitethroat was singing in the council yard in Oxhey this morning showing briefly at the top of a Birch tree. A Grey Wagtail was in the car park of the Essex arms on the Cassiobury estate.

Cassiobury Park - 17.5.10

A Buzzard flying over Whippendell Woods was the highlight with Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs singing aswell.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Buzzard - 14.5.10

A Buzzard flew SE over KGV playing fields at 10.30am being harrassed by a LBB Gull.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Mega - 11.5.10

2 photos of the Oriental Pratincole, 6 of the 8 Whimbrel and 3 of the 4 Curlew Sandpipers.

I went up to Frampton Marsh RSPB reserve in Lincs this afternoon in the hope of adding only my 2nd lifer of the year. I arrived on site just before 2pm and walked round to the East hide of this good looking reserve. Thankfully within seconds of getting in place the ORIENTAL PRATINCOLE was showing well although crouched down behind a weed out of the wind. Every now and then it would fly around catching insects showing of its reddish underwing and short tail but it would always land roughly in the same place near its favoured weed! Thats all 3 Pratincole species seen in 1 year to the week!

Also seen around the reserve were 4 Curlew Sandpipers, 8 Whimbrel, a few Avocets and Ruff, still around 200 Brent Geese, 4 Little Gulls and a Corn Bunting.

On the way home driving through Frampton village a Turtle Dove flew over the car which was a nice end to a good day.

Monday, 10 May 2010

Cassiobury Park - 10.5.10

After my juv Robin the other day I saw another in the council yard this afternoon! Also present were 2 Coal Tits busily collecting food, 5 Swifts overhead and the nesting Blackbirds are sitting on 5 eggs in their little cubby hole!

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Juv Robin - 8.5.10

This evening saw a juv Robin in the back garden. Like the juv Blackbird in Cassiobury Park the other day it's probably the earliest i've seen.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

KGVPF - 6.5.10

A rattling Lesser Whitethroat and 10 Swifts were at KGV playing fields in West Watford this afternoon.

Rite i'm off to vote!!

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Southern Europe or Kent?!! - 3.5.10

The Hoopoe and Iberian Chiffchaff.

If it wasn't for the freezing cold weather myself and my good birding friend Bob Harris could have been mistaken that we were in Europe and not in Kent as the birds seen were a long way from home! First stop was Walderslade near Chatham for a singing male Iberian Chiffchaff. The bird was singing both it's song and Common Chiffchaff but showed very well allowing for the photo above.

Next stop was Denge Marsh near Dungeness where despite the strong wind and showers we eventually saw 2 cracking adult Purple Herons flying over the small reedbed they were inhabiting. Unfortunately they didn't come out to play and be photographed. A Cuckoo also flew over.

A walk around the RSPB reserve saw a Lesser Whitethroat, 4 Yellow Wagtail, 14 summer plumaged Dunlin and a Hobby and on the way out 2 Whimbrel were seen along the access track.

A quick visit down to the sea saw 1 Black Tern at the patch with lots of 'commic terns' and a 1st summer Mediterranean Gull, a few Gannets were very distant, 10 Common Scoters flew East and on the Nuclear power station a male Black Redstart was singing but wasn't seen.

The final stop was Lenham Heath where eventually an elusive Hoopoe put in an a good show if a tad distant. A Willow Warbler was singing nearby.

Red-Rumped Dip - 2.5.10

I woke up around 8.45am and checked my pager to find a Red-Rumped Swallow was at Wilstone Reservoir but thankfully i'd seen the bird at Hilfield Reservoir in May 2000 so didn't rush around panicking! I got myself and my son ready and drove up in the hope of seeing it. Unfortunately on arrival it was clear that it had gone. 2 Common Sandpipers were the only birds of note but with a cold wind and rain we retreated to the car and went home!