Monday 28 November 2016

Winter visitors

Monday 28th November 2015

A round up of the past few days including a rare out of County trip. Having failed to connect with the Napton Res.6 on my first attempt,  I had another go last Friday. This time I and managed to see 2 of the little gems.
 Popped into Draycote Water on the way back. Be rude not to really. With the sun shining the Great northern Diver showed well. Also seen were a Slavonian grebe, Scaup and a couple of Dunlin. A couple of visits to Bentley woods were unproductive. In desperation I opted for an out of County experience on Saturday. I hoped to see Hawfinch on the edge of Cannock Chase,Staffs., and luckily they we on show as I arrived on site. I saw 5 birds, there were 7 in total apparently. Also in the area near Upper Longdon were Crossbill, Brambling and flocks of Siskin.

Great northern Diver, Draycote Water

Great northern Diver

Slavonian Grebe

Hawfinch, Upper Longdon, Staffs.




Little Egret, Alvecote

Stonechat, Alvecote

Monday 21 November 2016

Week's round up

Sunday 20th November 2016

Untidy week really, bit of birding, bit of this and that. Highlights were probably a couple of visits to Ladywalk N.R. where the newly arrived Bittern showed well, if somewhat distantly. Also a Green Sandpiper there. Visited the Caldecote 'patch' near Hartshill. Lots of Skylarks still on the stubble, the remaining grain attracting plenty of Woodpigeon which in turn attracted a couple of shooters. A small flock of Canada geese were also attracted to the grain one of which fell victim to the guns.
The Mancetter walk was also very quiet as was Alvecote pools apart from the odd Great White Egret, 4 Meadow Pipit and resident pair of Stonechat. The Mancetter walk and a walk round Shustoke Res.  provided excercise but little excitement.

Bentley Woods
Monitoring local Rowans continues. The local area has proved very attractive to Waxwings in previous 'invasion'years. Even appearing in my own garden in November 2010. Not the best photos but a memorable day.
Waxwings, garden

Tuesday 8 November 2016

Search for a Water pipit

Tuesday 8th Nov 2016

News that a Water pipit had been found at Draycote Water by John Judge and Bob Hazel brought about a rapid change of plans.I headed off to Draycote. One or two birders were checking through the numerous Meadow pipits along Farborough bank but none had seen the bird since the initial sighting. I was joined by JJ. We scanned the shore line but with no luck. 12 Whooper swan flew through and John picked up a Knot at the elbow. I carried on towards Toft before I got a call from John saying that Bob H had refound the Water pipit near the Wind surfing area. By the time I got round there they had lost sight of it again. There was no sign as I joined in the search again.
After a coffee and a P, I decided to check out Farborough bank again, by now the light was going but the bird had to be somewhere. Should I check out the 'windsurfing shore' one more time? Bingo, there it was, pretty much were it had last been seen. A satisfying conclusion to a good few hours Birding.
Whooper swans, Draycote Water



Tuesday 1 November 2016

Local Warks

1st November 2016

My local walks have been getting even more local recently. Instead of visiting several sites in North Warks I've focussed on a couple of more local sites on an almost daily basis in the past week. To some extent its paid off, with a Whinchat at Mancetter on Sunday and Stonechats in the Anker valley near Caldecote. Also interesting to see the build up of wintering species Skylarks, Meadow pipits and thrushes in particular but also a good number of Reed Buntings in one hedge. Numbers of finches though seem low at the moment. Today's stroll produced zilch. The sheep fields couldn't even host a Snow Bunting or a Richard's pipit. Try again tomorrow.

Fieldfare, Caldecote


1w Whinchat