Saturday, 10 April 2010

Full time

Never made grebes-ville this afternoon, ran out of time!  But me and the pup did 'bag' the Garganey at St. Mary's (it was wearing its 'I've been to Druridge Pools' badge!), and after waiting for a Sand Martin for a few weeks, and seeing my first this morning, there were, like the proverbial buses, several around the sandy cliff face to the North Bay.

And while I am on, good old Linnaeus didn't half push the boat out when he named the Garganey!

Half Time

In for lunch after a glorious morning up the coast.  First Sand Martin for me over the path to the South Hide on the North Pool at East Chev, and after hearing my first Willow Warblers across the South Pool and at Druridge, 'bagged' one at Arcot (NW corner of the SE field).  No Garganey at The Pools after two visits, but a nice pair of Pintail.

Second half?  Two Garganey at St. Mary's and perhaps a grebe or two!  Forgot to mention this little chap.

Sunday, 4 April 2010

Peregrine 1 - 0 Teal

Eventually managed to get out with The Chief Spotter at 14:15 today - half the blasted day gone, and, as it turned out, the driest half.  Driving north, the plan was to 'treat' herself to Little Owl and GWE and see what else was about.  And my humble motor got increasingly further from the equator, so the sky greyed and the precipitation worsened.

LO was nowhere to be seen, and at the Budge, the GWE was located opposite near the Heronry.  Crackin' views, and then all hell broke out.  All the birds lifted of the field but the cause was temporarily a mystery.  But the Lapwings were giving aggressive attention to something, and a move of the scope from the grace of the GWE showed it to be a female Peregrine, her right foot pinning a drake Teal to the ground.  There then followed several minutes (or, if you were that Teal, several hours!) of struggle, with feathers being plucked whilst the duck tried in vain to get away; not a chance!

For the next 30 minutes, it was quilt stuffing being separated from meat, and other than the occasional look-see, the raptor consumed the lot; that's quite a meal.

I have never witnessed this carnage before, nor had such magnificent views of a Peregrine.  She was quite a beast.  And, as expected, dear reader, a shitty-shotty!