Sunday, 26 April 2015

Comsa influx!

 A Shelduck was near the dam this morning. My first Cuckoo of the year flew along the ridge above Stony Bank. There was a good count of 5 Common Sandpiper on the dam. Other migrants included a singing Lesser Whitethroat and a single Swift.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Osprey update and other migrants.

 I emailed Roy Dennis about this colour ringed Osprey and he passed it on to John Wright at Rutland Water. John was able to identify the individual from the photo and colour ring. It is male 8F, a three year old bird ringed at the Manton Bay nest in 2012. It arrived yesterday, intruding at a nest that John was watching. Colour ringing and cameras are great! John has requested any photos of colour ringed osprey. Please send them to him, no matter how poor, and mine were poor!
This LRP was on the dam this morning. Also the Ring Ouzel is still with the cattle at the Markfield inflow. There was a Wheatear there on Saturday.
This evening there was a smart male Redstart in the first hedge along the east bank.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Common Tern?

 This  tern came from the west and headed off east at 0842.
 The clear dark demarcation to the primaries, smaller size and bouncy flight had me thinking Arctic at first.
 But the shorter tail, lack of translucent on primaries and less forward set wings had me thinking Common.
 Longer bill fits Common.
 Infact the bill seems very long, or is that just the heavy cropping? I looked in Collins to see what I might be missing and read:- Rather similar to Common Tern , except slightly longer bill, narrower wings and often elegant , bouncing flight =White-cheeked Tern!!!!!!! It even has a hint of a dark trailing edge on the secondaries. Any suggestions? Like ,it is a Common Tern you Tosser!!! 

Colour ringed Osprey.

 Osprey over Thornton Res at 9am 18th April.
 Came in from the south and headed north west.
 It then turned and came back over the res before flying back in the direction it had come from.
It has a blue colour ring on the right leg.

Monday, 13 April 2015


Two Yellow Wagtails were near Retreat Farm and 15 Fieldfare were feeding in the cattle fields. A single Common Sandpiper was on the dam.

Easter on Sao Miguel, Azores.

 Plenty of photogenic BND,s were seen and also some frisky Common Dolphins.
 Mother and calf demonstrating the hour glass ID.
 A single Loggerhead turtle made a brief appearance.
 Cory's Shearwaters were common.
 I also spotted a small group of what I presume were Little Shearwaters.
 Typical down dropping wings and visible eye.
 On the trail of a large Rorqual. Tracking the Fluke prints!

 Fin whale blows off Ponta del Gada.

 A pod of Bottle nosed Dolphins.
 A Fin whale appearing rather grey and Blue whale like in colour. The large dorsal gives it away.

 Fin whale dorsal fins vary, but tend to be low and backswept.
 Fin Whale head and blow hole.
 Looking down the blow hole.
 Azorean Chaffinch seemed different to our birds, with less pink on the breast.
Hunted for the endemic Priolo ,but heavy rain halted our search. Both male and female look like a female Bullfinch. It resides in the laurel forests , which are being conserved. Found this image at the visitor centre, which was locked! My Sao Miguel bird list reached about 25. Corvo is the place to visit in October for Yanky vagrants.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Pair of Scoter.

A pair of Common Scoter were present on Saturday 4th April. There was also the first House Martins and Swallows, with a few Sand Martins.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Signs of Spring.

The well grazed fields near Retreat Farm held a flock of 34 Pied Wagtails. Several Chiffchaff were calling around the reservoir. I managed to catch one Chiff while ringing on the 2nd. It already sported a ring and was one I had rung in September. Up to 8 Buzzards were over Thornton Wood on the same date and had a Sparrowhawk and a Peregrine for company. A pair of Little Owl were seen enjoying the spring sunshine. A pair of Long tailed tits were noted close to their wonderfully constructed nest.