Saturday, 29 October 2011

Trips and Dips

Purple Heron at Saltholme? Dipped.  Richard's Pipit at St. Mary's?  Dipped.

And now the better news.

Semi-palmated Sandpiper at Greatham (consolation prize):
(Trust me - it's the one on the left!)

Pectoral Sandpiper at Castle Lake:

And today, early start (via Maccy D's), and to Sleddale/Commondale.  Windy, cold, clear and occasionally bright.  It took until 11:00 am for the first Rough-legged Buzzard to show, from the chevrons, arriving from the north over the tumulus and after two failed attempts at catching Red Grouse, it landed on the west side of a tall conifer along Sleddale Beck (so out of sight).  A second Rough-legged Buzzard arrived a wee while later and had a dogfight with a Common Buzzard.  Also seen were Sparrowhawk, Kestrel, Merlin and Peregrine by the time I left at 12:30pm.

The one that got away:

Seen the hunted, now the hunters:

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Ready! Aim! Fire(crest)!

Firecrests showing obscenely well from day break to 09:20 today at Old Hartley/St. Mary's. Yesterday, it/they were in the shrubs on the west side of the second mound, if walking south from Old Hartley car park (on the east side of the path). Today, the bird(s) had moved north into the shrubs, on the first mound, walking south. Often, the view was within feet and at head height, or the bird dropped to the grass/path. Some of the proper photographers got some absolutely phenomenally brilliant shots. As for me...