Monday, 14 November 2011

November 13th - The patch and a trip to Margate!

After, what seemed like, days and days of mist, it was great to get out in clear blue skies. The morning started with a quick run (maybe not the most accurate description!) round Bedgebury Forest, I didn't see or hear much on my run with Bec, as my breathing was so heavy the birds probably thought some awful predator had been re-introduced to the forest and they were keepimg their heads down, so I don't remember seeing anything much other than Mallards on Louisa Lake! Back at home, we headed out for a walk round the castle. Stephen had called to say he'd had maybe 4000 WOODPIGEONS through in the morning and more than 240 LAPWINGS, the biggest flock being around 90 birds.
One of the first birds we caught a glimpse of was a large female SPARROWHAWK as we walked through Bull and Birches wood but couldn't find any evidence of a kill where it flew up from. In Roundshill wood there was a good flock of tits which included all the of the family that I record here. A MARSH TIT showed well for a short time, not long enough to change lenses though. A SISKIN was then seen flying low over the wood. As we walked round the lake and I took the picture above, Bec drew my attention to 2 BUZZARDS circling over Lake Field, by the time I had changed lenses they were still in view but more distant, we followed them for a short distance, as we watched we became aware of another 3 birds circling nearby. Five BUZZARD together, always a treat, with our heads skywards we picked up a flock of 15 LAPWING heading south east followed by 20 or so BLACK HEADED GULLS. We didn't see a lot more on the walk but I was happy with the Buzzards and a bright day.



One did come a little lower briefly!
 I left home around 2.30pm in bright sunshine and arrived at 3.30pm to a misty Margate. With light fading I tried to get a few pics of what I think is the first mainland record of this subspecies of Black Redstart, Eastern Black Redstart. I'm not normally in the habit of going out of my way for subspecies of birds but this was quite different to our usual Black Reds and well worth the trip. It was very obliging and it would have been good to have got there earlier when the light was better and I could have explored the area a bit more.

Eastern Black Redstart

6 comments:

Ramón Suárez said...

Guapas fotos Alan. Saludos!!

Warren Baker said...

Lots of Woodpigeons over here as well Alan, and a Buzzard, as you have already seen :-)

The EBR is a real stunner!

Phil said...

Seems like the Buzzards like the sunshine as much as we do Alan. Nice pics of the Black Redstart too.

Christian said...

Brilliant find Alan!

Alan Pavey said...

Hi Ramon, thanks, the autumn colours are pretty especially if we get some sun :-)

Hi Warren, it was quite busy with birds really, probably just enjoying the sun!

Hi Phil, thanks, it was great to see the Buzzards, I always enjoy them.

Hi Christian, the EBR was so obliging it was difficult to miss :-)

Marianne said...

That redstart is really stunning. Nice that it's a bit of a poser too :) Lovely Buzzard pics, and the lake looks wonderful!