Saturday, 15 February 2014
OK, so I succumbed. En route south, knocked-off Pochard for the Patch Year List; good start! Found the place easily off the A177, parked correctly, followed the source of the departing optic-carriers and voila, the trees, the lamp-post, the half-coconuts and the throng. The rain had stopped and it all looked good. A few glimpses of its yellow rear, and some other brief glances of various anatomical aspects, oft obscured by the thicket it was determined to remain within. And then the rain started again. And so the enjoyment speedily ebbed due to moisture, breeze, wet specs, damp optics, a timid quarry and people frequently walking in front of my scope. I know when I'm done; and I was done. So I've paid my fee to the bucket-shakers, seen a bird I'll probably never see ever again and had a ride out. The Life List is now one notch bigger but to be honest, did it give me any more pleasure than seeing the Little Owl on Beacon Lane? What do you think?
Friday, 14 February 2014
Nice little stroll today; usual local beauty spots, albeit somewhat drier than usual. Wessie remains Jack-less, additions for the year being Shelduck and Reed Bunting. There was a flock of 40 Mipits that was quite a wee spectacle and very vocal. Plessey Mill Farm Wood was busy, 40 Redwing, 3 Jays, Mistle and Song Thrushes and more common fayre. Arcot's Tufties now number 16, accompanied by 4 Wigeon and 3 Mallards, hods of Coot and Teal too. Not quite Yellow-rumped Warbler, but hey ho!
Sunday, 9 February 2014
With the dedication to the patch that yielded success last year, talk of a yellow-rumped warbler (I am sure someone's making these names up) did little to draw me south (Tuesday, if it's still about, may be a different matter!!). Finely balancing keeping 'Er Indoors happy by some chore-related activity with spells in the rarefied Cramlington air eventually paid off. Woodcock have eluded me thus far in 2014, The Guv having four in one go at one stage and Crammy several singles. So not for the first time, the golf course's NE corner demanded some welly-clad activity, and not just one but two of the little blighters. Jack's failed to show (yet again) but a wee reward for many a plodge at Wessie with a duo of Oycs.