Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Lonesome Swan

A recent trip to Shellingford Quarry gave a reminder of just how brutal nature can be with the sparse remains of a Mute Swan, probably taken by a Fox or less likely a Badger leaving the Swans mate forlornly swimming rather aimlessly around the now quite large expanse of water. Local birder Robert had discovered the body of a Tawny Owl close by although the death of this bird is almost certainly due to the desperate shortage of small rodents that have been drowned in the persistent and heavy rain we have experienced.
On a brighter note four delightful Yellow Wagtail, one Common Snipe, one Gadwall and a large field of Cowslips.

Friday, 19 April 2013

It's Warming Up.

Nice Peacock Butterfly today along with several Bumble Bees and a couple of Chiffchaffs these visitors are my first spring sightings and I've not even clocked Swallows or Martins yet, still I had views of six Grey Partridge in a release pen - no! I've no idea why they were in their but at least a little later I had the pleasure of watching a completely wild pair on territory and good views of Kestrel, many Reed Bunting, two Green Woodpecker, one Grey Heron, six Fieldfare, a flock of some fifty Black Headed Gulls and a rather nice spring flower in the form of Coltsfoot.

English Partridge


any ideas ?



Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Photographed a few Birds today - Well it beat watching a funeral.

Couldn't get too far from the car today as duty may have called me away at any time so snapped a few birds from the relative comfort of the front seat. The Greenfinch is suddenly everywhere or at least it is on my patch and several Red Legs have been noted pairing up.
This horrid Winter has been notable for the lack of Yellowhammer so this pair I photographed were a most welcome sight.

Greenfinch opting for the Sunflower seed

Red Leg with nesting site on its mind

Yellowhammer looking rather ungainly in mid hop

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Just been unable to get out lately

Hope to get blogging this next week as I should have a bit more time to visit the Warren, Horsecroft and Bampton surrounds will also be looking out for the return of the Buscot Turtle  Dove. Seeing plenty of Greenfinch in the garden at Stanford.
 Photo of the Turtle Dove at Buscot.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

New Computer - so you are now going to have to put up with my ramblings again.

Its been some time since I've updated the blog so I will  just run through a few of the birds that have caught my eye. Recently travelled to Wales to visit my brother and his lovely wife Lucille who is unwell at the present time also visited my sister Valerie and her husband Keith , they own a caravan park high in the hills above Lampeter that has a great variety of birdlife with loads of fairly confiding Jays and Nuthatch my niece Karen lives with Val and kindly sends me riddles to solve and then a little later sends me the answers thanks for the most recent correspondence Karen although unfortunately it cost me £1.19p in underpaid postage. Dined at the Indian Restaurant The Shapla in Lampeter  and I rate this the best Indian in the uk - delicious.
I guess Common Snipe have been one of the birds I've seen surprisingly often and in a variety of locations, still seeing Fieldfare and Redwing at a few sites and recently Greenfinch are putting in a welcome appearance thankfully without that awful disfiguring disease, Reed Bunting and Goldfinch are everywhere and in good numbers. A trip to pit 60 gave views of a large flock of Wigeon and just about all the open water sites I have visited have had good numbers of Tufted, Pochard, Mallard and Wigeon. The woodland and open countryside I travel have given me a flyover Sandpiper, Redpoll, Green Woodpecker, wren (goodness knows how they have survived this terrible weather) Red Kite, Buzzard and lots of Kestrels have been noted. A local Keeper texted me to tell me about a Common Buzzard  he watched carrying a Barn Owl in its talons , he didn't know if the Buzzard had killed it or was merely doing what they do quite well ie clearing up carrion , I suggested that since the majority of the Vole population has been drowned by the almost incessant rain the Barn Owl was probably dead like so many of its kin due to starvation you only have to look out at any time of day to see starving Barn Owls hunting.