Saturday, 12 June 2010

Sick as F@ck!

It was Sir Royston of Grangetown who coined the phrase in his witty ditty!  He can add a line on my behalf that he's 'as short as the Liverbirder's Life List'.

Last night, I was the, if not one of the, first to hear Quail in Cramlington.  For an hour and a half I chased the little bleeders as they called ahead of me then stopped and stooped and metaphorically put their two primaries up at me and then ran off again.

Today, others have invaded my patch and seen the wee game birds.  At least one local has also ticked them.  But after my fourth try, with sore feet (me and the dog), we give up.

Give me a Great White Egret any time.

Friday, 11 June 2010

And there's even more!

West Hartford tonight, never mind the jiz, here's the birding jism!

Walking my lucky charm near the west end of the access road and f*ck me, QUAIL!

Phoned John - The Duke of Cramlington - Malloy and he was already there and thought he had heard one near the brick house (cue The Commodores).

I reckon three to four in the area over the 90 minutes I was there.

Could I see Lifer 255?  Could I f*ck!  At times they were only feet away but completely invisible.

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Not A Knot?


Two negatives make a positive so not Not A Knot makes it a Knot. 

At WH tonight, an odd looking wader, along with the usual suspects.  I thought it might be a Knot, but in Temminck's-like fashion, poop, scoop, home, Collin's, scope, car, run, view.

It was a Knot, in winter plumage, and confirmed by local wise man Lindsey McDougall, who was equally intrigued.  A good bird for the patch, and plenty of Barn Owl action too.

Monday, 7 June 2010

First Marsh Shun (clever title as it sort of sounds like Martian)

Tried for Lifer 254 tonight at Druridge. 

The weather had affected the expected throng, that 'amassed' but three, inc. 'Sir' Alan Gilbertson and 'Lord' Brian Bullough (and a guy from Chesterfield of all places) - quality over quantity, I would suggest.  Brian had seen it, Alan had seen them before but had arrived a few minutes ahead of me and a few minutes behind the other chap.  Alas, I was initially shunned by the quarry.

BUT, I ventured to the rear of the bushes/trees/shrubs where it had been seen to drop before I got there.  And along with a Willow Warbler and a Reed Bunting, a bird whose call was like nothing heard before.  With my Jilly Goolden head on, there was essence of Blackbird amongst others.  And so, 254 and 183 for the year.  Yippee!!

AND, I watched a Stoat hopping trough the long grass from right to left across my path and out of sight.  Moments later, left to right.  Then a minute or so later it emerged and got within THREE feet of where I stood before our eyes met, it dropped its dinner (it's a posh stoat as it was actually tea time!), and did the quickest u-turn known to man and off at warp factor three.  Its meal - a Magpie chick (makes a change for the Mag-ettes to get preyed upon).

AND better still, a little later, as my fleece got heavier with absorbed precipitation (rain), and my specs too, from the east shore appeared Asio otus in all its glory.  And after being chased by SWALLOWS (yes, those cute little hirundines have a mean streak!) into the thicket along the shore, it then appeared and was only four feet above my head.


And at 20:00 hrs, time for tea, and before leaving, a quick chat with Stew the Smew who has arrived late and reports a quiet season so far for the SW N/land Nightjars, with only two breeding pairs noted to date.

And now I must dash and await Crammy Birder's tales of finding the Marsh Warbler via his blog.  Can't wait!!!!