Underground And Overground.

Posted on - In Another Bird Blog
We’ve had a few dreary mornings and I’d waited days for a bright, clear morning to drive into the hills with camera at the ready. Tuesday looked promising so I was up early and then drove north and east with fingers crossed as I left the coast behind. This was probably the last chance of the year as upland birds have already started their return journeys to coastal locations. "Click the pics" for close-ups. To The Coast There are not many Lapwing around now and I was counting ones and twos only, with little sign of late breeders. In my experience, Lapwings tend to give up rather than try again if their early breeding fails with small flocks appearing as early as mid-June. I found a good number of Curlew, some with large “running” chicks but also a good sized one learning the ropes of calling from a drystone wall.  ...

Conder Pool….Mainly.

Posted on - In Birds2blog
Seven Common Tern on Conder Pool Friday were as seen a week ago on 8 June which was the last time I was there. Other than the three chicks on the pontoon have grown a little, there was no change regarding these seven, but it makes watching the young chicks a little more anxious when the adults keep leaving them unattended whilst they go off fishing, I personally didn't think this would have been their behaviour to leave them at the mercy of predation....Wrong again!Common Sandpiper Conder Pool 15 June. Ian Pinkerton.An early returning Common Sandpiper flew in, one last seen at Conder Green 26 April, and certainly not expected back here in my book just yet. At least one Avocet seen, but no idea what they're up to at the back of the pool, as I've not yet done any trespass to find out, there's also the surpri...

Flycatcher Festival.

Posted on - In Birds2blog
On a few hours spent in the Marshaw - Tower Lodge - Trough Bridge area earlier in the week, it was rewarding to find 7 Pied Flycatcher. Priority of the visit was to get up to date on the pair found tree nesting on 23 May. Today they were both watched regularly returning to the nest feeding young, quite the opposite to the female seen leaving the nest box at Tower Lodge, with at least one young poking it's head out of the box, but despite a couple of prolonged watches, I saw no adult birds returning over a total of 30 minutes. Pied FlycatcherA pair were seen at another nest box in the compound, but better still was yet to come when I got to the top of the hill beyond Trough Bridge, I saw a bird in flight, and picking it up in a tree it was a female Pied Flycatcher offering the possibility of a second pair tree n...
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A Conder Update.

Posted on - In Birds2blog
Strapped for birding and blogging time, and unless things change for the better soon, probably not able to get to Conder Green - or anywhere else - until Monday. But I have IP to be thankful to for keeping me updated with news and pictures on Conder Pool matters, where life and death is at the forefront of things.The pontoon Common Tern now have three chicks taking a first look at life through the window....I'd like to think, with good parentage and no predation, we'll see these three flying around the pool, having escaped to freedom from their prison around 10 July.Whilst as predicted from the start, inevitably the Oystercatcher pair have now lost all three of their young, the evidence of one remaining in the pontoon....the other two? Killer in the garden.This Sparrowhawk was the first thing I struck eyes on w...
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Another Moth

Posted on - In Fleetwood Birder
Yesterday morning I checked a Barn Owl and Kestrel box at my good friends Robert and Diana's farm. In the Barn Owl box were two chicks about two days old, so there could be a couple more eggs to hatch. The female Kestrel was in residence at the box and she was sat, presumably incubating eggs or brooding small young, so we didn't disturb her. I'll be back in ten days or so to hopefully ring the Barn Owl and Kestrel chicks. Highly zoomed picture of the Kestrel in her boxThis morning as I was putting my ringing box away in my storage box in the garage I caught out of the corner of my eye what I thought was a Hornet resting on my tool bag! My first thought was "that's going to be interesting getting that beastie out of the garage"! Still thinking I was dealing with a Hornet I thought I would carefully lift my tool bag up, carry it outside,...
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Sleepy Time North

Posted on - In Another Bird Blog
There’s not a lot to report from this morning’s birding sortie but then it is sleepy mid-June. The regular Barn Owl flew over someone’s garden and past their lounge window. That’s a pretty good bird for anyone’s garden list. Barn OwlI stopped at Gulf Lane to inspect the bird seed cover crop and where pretty soon we’ll be catching more Linnets, a few Goldfinch and one or two other species. There’s been a tremendous surge of growth in the six or seven weeks since the farmer sowed the field during which there’s been zero rain with lots of sunny days. At the end of July we’ll cut a 100 ft ride for single panel nets through the crop and away we go with Linnet catching through until March. Bird Seed Cover Crop I saw six or eight Goldfinch and a couple of Linnets along the edge of the dried up ditch plus a sin...
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Birds, Butterflies, & Banded.

Posted on - In Birds2blog
A Conder Green - Glasson Dock circuit proved eventful, and started at Conder Pool where 7 Common Tern were seen as two adult on Tern Island, two adult on the pontoon which now have two chicks, and a loose bird departing the pool toward the estuary. Image. Ian Pinkerton.The Oystercatcher pontoon pair having had three young, are now down to two, one has 'disappeared'. IP's image shows the continuing hostilities, with the Common Tern attacking the unguarded Oystercatcher young, 'clik the pik' for a blow up of the picture to better see the unfortunate chick through the now heavily soiled perspex. A pair of Avocet seem to have settled in on the backside of Tern Island, and 15 Tufted Duck were also noted on the pool.Update.The latest news re Conder Pool, is that both adult terns left the two chicks unattend...

Moths

Posted on - In Fleetwood Birder
After a full week of 4:00 a.m. alarm calls I was determined not to get up too early over weekend in order to recharge my batteries before the early alarm calls kick in again Monday morning!The potential Barn Owls that I mentioned in a previous post turned out to be Jackdaws! I checked the box that one of my farmer friends has in one of his buildings that he thought was occupied by Barn Owls, but when I peered into the box the beady eyes of large Jackdaw chicks peered back at me! Anyway, at least we know he doesn't have Barn Owls, well not in that box!I ran my garden moth trap on Friday and Saturday night and although I didn't get huge numbers I did catch a few interesting species. New for the garden were Setaceous Hebrew Character, Clouded-bordered Brindle and Figure of Eighty. My totals over the two nights of what I could identify, in addi...
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Missed The Pink

Posted on - In Another Bird Blog
I found myself looking at Starlings this morning. Yes, those noisy, mucky pests that carry the very appropriate Latin title of Sturnus vulgaris. For readers not up to speed with the latest rarity news, there has been an influx of Rose-coloured Starlings into Western Europe and the UK from the pink ones’ normal area of easternmost Europe and southern Asia.  In those parts the species inhabits steppe and open agricultural land but when they turn up here in the UK they might be found in almost any habitat that resembles their original.  An adult Rosy Starling looks nothing like our Common Starling but for the next few weeks it’s a good idea to check out any post-breeding Starling flocks as the juveniles of each species have a closer likeness.All of a sudden there are a lot of Starlings around this week with flocks here and t...
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Nairn better

Posted on - In Wading through Wigeon
Just come back from a fantastic family holiday in Nairn near Inverness, where we managed to see most of the Highland and Speyside specialities in just one full day birding plus some stop offs after days out. An extended stop at Killiecrankie on the way up saw 2 singing Wood Warbler – what a great place to have lunch and stretch your legs. The caravan park that we stopped at was great, right by Nairn’s lovely beach and surrounded by Gorse, Broom and some forest full of Yellowhammer and Redpoll. A few pure(ish) looking Hoodies were around with various intergrades and pure Carrions. The days birding was mostly spent walking in Golden Eagle territory and we saw 3 different birds – an adult and a young bird together and a lone young bird that gave fantastic views overhead – the pics with the Buzzard are quite nice as a s...
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