Tuesday, 26 November 2013

A Weekend in Suffolk

Visiting friends in Suffolk is always a treat and some nice weather this weekend meant some good walking was to be had. I was hoping to get a few pics of Red Deer which can be seen around Westleton and Dunwich heaths. There weren't many birds around but after a while we did find around 6-8 DARTFORD WARBLERS a couple of crests and 2 COAL TITS on Dunwich Heath, none of them wanted to stay put for long, I managed to add LESSER REDPOLL, BRAMBLING and MEADOW PIPITS flew over. FIELDFARES and REDWINGS were sparse with only 3 REDWING and about 15 FILEDFARE seen all weekend.
We found Red Deer on both days but just one of them let me close enough for some pics, the rest were a fair way away. Here are a couple of pics from the weekend.
Green Wood on our friends lawn

Red Deer 'teenagers'

Red Deer

Red Deer, looked at us now and then whilst eating

Coal Tit

'Coal Tit finds caterpillar'

Sunday, 17 November 2013

More Crossbills

A beautiful morning yesterday (Saturday 16th) saw me heading to Hemsted Forest for only the 4th time, in recent weeks, hoping to get a few pics of either the Two-barred Crossbill or a maybe a Parrot Crossbill. On my own for the first few minutes I enjoyed brief views of a 1st year male PARROT CROSSBILL and managed a couple of quick photos. It flew before the first birders arrived. A young PEREGRINE came and landed on the edge of the clearing and with no Crossbills for a short time I headed over to get a couple of shots, before reaching the Peregrine a dozen or so Crossbills flew almost over my head and landed in the favoured Oak. One slightly buzzy call drew my attention and there was the TWO BARRED CROSSBILL, I took more shots but was really the wrong side of the tree but did have some excellent views of the bird, I didn't really check the other Crossbills much as I was enjoying views of the Two Barred, I went back and joined the few gathered birders and found that at least one Parrot was also in that small group. The Crossbills put in several appearances in my two and a half hour visit giving flight views and different calls to try and decipher. Here are a few pics from the visit.
Early Parrot Crossbill

Two Barred and Common Crossbill

A couple more of the Two barred

Three species of Crossbill together

Three species together again

Not sure what's happening to Blogger this picture doesn't want to appear at the end of the blog as intended!!

Last Parrot of the morning for me

After visiting Hemsted, a quick walk round the patch at Sissinghurst didn't really produce a lot but 3 COMMON BUZZARDS were nice and one came close enough for a pic.
This morning was very grey and drizzly but it was brightened by the appearance of my first FIRECREST (103) of the year excellent, there were around 200 BLACK HEADED GULLS in the field s but despite a long search I couldn't find any Meds. I'm hoping for a clearer morning in the week and hopefully relocate the Firecrest for a couple of pictures.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Finally a post!!

After nearly two weeks of man flu! and some poor weather in the mornings, I got out this morning for an hour and it was a beautiful morning. I didn't see a lot, about a dozen SKYLARK came up from the field, while this years piglets decided to follow me thinking I had their breakfast. FIELDFARE, REDWING, REDPOLL and SISKIN were around in small numbers and a male SPARROWHAWK drifted low over the trees in the lovely early light. The new pond did have 2 MALLARD on it, again the light illuminated the drake wonderfully, I don't think my photo does it justice but it was worth a go. (click for larger image)
Hopefully I'll get a decent walk in at the weekend or another look at Hemsted.

We have lift off!