Saturday, 21 April 2012

Ahhhh! Grasshopper!

Arcot at 06:30 was dead.  And wet!  Very wet!  In fact, Cramlington has never been so wet since records began (3mins 53s).

So off to Wessie H for a scan next.  Equally sodden, I could have done with the Guv'nor's galoshes!

Two SEOs doing the business, and then, behold, a star from the east (actually the west but the religious link would then have failed!).  From the tree/hedge line between the flashes, the reeling of a Gropper.  At bloody last; now if he can coax his Sedgie cousin to drop in..........

Friday, 20 April 2012

One Good Tern

Arcot at 6:30 am today - still VERY wet; even The Guv'nor, always wellie-clad, would need waders!

Six Tufties (3 pairs) were there and very flighty. 

No sight nor sound of any migrants beyond Wibblers and Chiffies but a Common Tern landed twice, briefly, on the sunken hedge before Mallard activity spooked it up and high and over t'wards Big Waters.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Scheitz Rules

For those who have ever been taught German, in the combination of 'i' and 'e', it's the second of the two that is pronounced.  So 'ie' is e and 'ei' is i.  That's not one of the rules referred to in the title, but helps in understanding this rant!

Rule No. 1 - the adhesive qualities of dog dirt are proportional to the the depth of the tread pattern on the sole of the shoe of the person who fails to see said dirt.

Rule No. 2 - the 'bouquet' of said dirt is inversely proportional to the ability of the shoe wearer to detect having stepped in it.

So last night, an hour at Whitley Bay's birding epicentre seeking to add Luscinia megarhynchos to the County list provided nothing ornithologically spectacular but did offer an opportunity to test both Scheitz Rules, and I can confirm the rules remain sound!

Monday, 16 April 2012

This Date in 2011

Sedgies and Grassies at Arcot 16/4/11.  Today?  Neither, although they would have been hard to hear above the world's loudest and most continual Song Thrush, calling from the top of a tall tree in the SE corner.

Nice to locate two Green Sandpiper together on the NW shore tho'.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Hard to Swallow

Several, quick local sessions over the weekend had me;
  • Searching for a reported nesting Common Buzzard pair, without success
  • Watching a battle between a Short-eared Owl and a male Sparrowhawk at Arcot
  • Noting Arcot's three Exmoor Ponies have increased to five and an impressive sparring session between two, involving rearing-up, biting and general equine thuggery
  • Recording my first hirundine of 2012 (at last!!) with a Swallow low and northwards over West Hartford's brickhouse
  • Travelling south on the A189 on Saturday morning when a male Ring Ouzel flew left to right in front of the car here.