Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Patrington Haven

Been down to pat haven a couple of times this week first on Monday night, the first thing that struck me was the dramatic increase in waders since the following week.
In total there were 14 different species including a single green sandpiper, 2 curlew sandpipers and a small flock of golden plover.The black tailed godwit and knot in summer plumage were stunning.Also little egret and a very vocal cuckoo,but no raptors or owls.There was also a hare that tokk a short cut across the lagoon temporarily flushing the waders.
I went back again last night and the conditions were perfect, hardly any wind and perfect light.
There was another good showing of waders, a marsh harrier, long eared owl and barn owl.
A good flock of gulls but nothing out of the ordinary.
there was quite a bit of disturbance from walkrs on the bank so the wders were a bit more wary thanthe night before, but still gave some superb views.
Other birds included grey heron, yellow wagtail and kingfisher.
Grey Plover

Bar Tailed Godwit

Curlew Sandpiper

Barn Owl

Marsh Harrier




Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Patrington Haven

I have been going down to Pat Haven probably once a week with the dog this Spring.
There hasn't been much in the way of rare birds but there has been a few decent ones to keep me interested including common waders yellow wagtails barn owl and a pair of grey partridges I saw them nearly every time I went down and they were usually on the track and flew over the drain and into the next field.
I know they have had a hard time just lately and I thought it would be nice if they managed to breed.
I went down last night and noticed that the bank and one side of the access road had been harshly cut back and I accept that prolonged weed growth might lead to erosion of the flood defence.
However I thought that it might be somewhat inappropriate to carry out such a harsh cut over such a large area at what is probably the height of the breeding season. Why couldn't the cut be done say at the end of July or in August?
Anyway I went back again tonight and this time they had cut the other side of the track-i couldn’t see what advantage they would gain from this.
About half way down I saw the corpse of a bird and initially I thought it was an owl, looking closer I could see it was one of the grey partridges, I thought it strange that it could have been caught by the mower ,then I saw why.
There was a clutch of eggs about 2 feet away.
I can only conclude that the female partridge knew of the imminent danger as the mower approached and stayed with her clutch in the vain hope of protecting them.
To see the dead bird and smashed clutch of eggs made me feel sick to the stomach.
This was an avoidable occurrence.
In my opinion I cannot see any viable reason for the cut to be done at a later time in the year.
This did not happen by accident. This was part of a managed plan of work.
Clearly those responsible for instigating this type of action do not give a shit about the consequential damage to the environment.
The saddest part about it? The male bird surveying the wreckage of his family as I walked back up the track.

Sunday, 27 June 2010

I went up to fen Bog yesterday, I've only been a couple of times before about 4 years ago so I went mainly in the hope of seeing some butterflies and anything else would be a bonus.

The most obvious birds there were the whinchat and I saw at least 5 pairs some feeding young.
Also there were plenty of willow warblers, a couple of whitethroats, a green woodpecker, reed warblers and a few flyover curlew.
It was the insects that stole the show, small pearl bordered fratiliary and large heath (butterflies) a keeled skimmer and the most impressive was a golden ringed dragonfly a massive creature (in terms of dragonfly).
there were plenty of people there to look at the insects and I could easily be tempetd to get some more suitable photographic equipment.
Fen bog is areally special place and I will be back again.

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Long live our sparrows!

It was a shame to hear of the plight of our house sparrows on Springwatch the other night.They have reduced dramatically in numbers around the country to now be on the red list.
Fortunately we have a fairly heathy population around our back way, we feed them all day long and the local flock has been boosted by what looks like a good brood of youngsters.
On recent sunny day I was fortunate enough to get these intimate shots, and in good light and breeding plumage these little characters are pretty special.
Long live our house sparrows!

Saturday, 5 June 2010

Fantastic Day

Its been a bit slow in East Yorks just lately and as I had booked a week off I was hoping for something unusual to turn up.
Unfortunately it wasn't to be so I went out of county in search of some goodies.
First stop was Weeting Fen for some stone curlews.
None at first but then 3 showed together-very nice to see a lifer albeit distant and shrouded in heat haze.There was alos a spotted flycatcher here.
next stop was RSPB reserve at Lakenheath.It was the first time I had been to this reserve and what a cracking spot.
The temperature was hovering around 27 degrees and the golden orioles were at the far end.As I walked down there were plenty of common warblers plus at least 3 cuckoos.
The golden orioles had been reportd singing from the third plantation and as soon as I got there they were sining away.
One showed very briefly a couple of times, but was quite distant.There was alos a hobby hawking above and a bittern booming in the distance.
On the way back I saw a very attractive banded demoiselle.
Then on to Welney, first birds were a couple of whooper swans, then round for the bluethroat.
I thought there would be a bigger crowd but there was only a small handful of people there.It performed brilliantly well for most of the afternoon often coming to within 3m of where I was stood.There was also a male garganey and 2 turtle doves.
Overall it was a fantastic day, some great birds and a good supporting cast toped off by marvellous views of the bluethroat.

border="0" alt=""id="BLOGGER_PHOTO_ID_5479397007344841938" />