Sunday, 14 November 2010


2 photos and a bit of video of the Pied-Billed Grebe.

After not going to Cornwall for the American Bittern for a variety of reasons I was just having lunch at work when the MEGA alert went off saying that another American species had been found in Greater Manchester. So Saturday morning myself and the missus set off for Hollingworth Lake NR near Rochdale. Only trouble was that the M1 was shut at junction 20 and the M6 was partially closed at junction 13!! So either way it was gonna take longer than expected. I chose the M6 and when we reached the accident we could see just why it was partially closed, an articulated lorry had left the road and ploughed through the hedge and into a tree and down an embankment. We arrived on site at 11.30 and walked around to the area where the bird was favouring and immediately got onto the bird. There sat out of the water was my first ever PIED-BILLED GREBE. Typically though it decided that an hour sat out of the water was enough and went off fishing no sooner as I was trying to get a photo hence why I managed just 2 slightly blurry photos!! It then showed well for the next 30 minutes before we headed off for the loo and a warm cuppa! Other birds of note were fly over Lesser Redpolls and Siskin and on the car park feeders 2 Coal Tits and a lovely male Bullfinch but a brief Marsh Tit was another year tick.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Cassiobury Park - 11.11.10

The only bird of note was a Little Egret that was forced down by a heavy shower at 2.30pm. The strange thing was though that it was about 1/4 mile from the river where they are usually seen. It was in the grass by the Stratford Road entrance but then flew off towards towards the river.

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Beardies - 30.10.10

A pager message saying that 3 Bearded Tits were at Amwell NR had me panicking as I still need them for my Herts list. Unfortunately I couldn't go straight away and I eventually arrived at 12.45pm. At the viewpoint were Barry Reed, Graham White and another birder so I asked Graham if there was any news to which he replied 1 had flown off 5 minutes ago but your best bet is to go to the James hide and view from there. I only had around an hour before I had to be back home and in that time I didn't see or hear any sign of the other 2 birds.

4 Water Rail, Kingfisher, 3 Reed Bunting, 2 Siskin, Cetti's Warbler, Sparrowhawk and a Buzzard were seen while waiting.

The 2 remaining beardies were seen the next day! Bugger!!

Pink- Foot or Pink-Feet?! - 29.10.10

On arriving at work this morning I stepped out of the car and almost immediately heard the call of Pink-Footed Goose somewhere to the NW of the council yard. Unfortunately it was still dark and so I was unable to see how many there were and in what direction it/they were flying!! I've just checked the records for Cassiobury Park and this is the first ever record and becomes the 146th species recorded in the park and Whippendell Woods.