On 5th November, as I was tidying up the garden, I heard my first Waxwing of the autumn flying overhead - the unmistakable trilling call was to become even more familiar over the coming weeks as small flocks started to infiltrate this side of the Pennines with double figures in Blackburn and recently large counts in several places around East Lancashire.
|Waxwings in Blackburn 27 Nov|
|Desert Wheatear, St Annes, Nov 2016|
But there was more. News broke in mid December of a Dusky Thrush in Derbyshire and after much nervous anticipation, we decided to put the Christmas Shopping on hold to see this bird and though it gave us the run-around we did get some excellent if distant views. The bird is still there!
|First-winter female Dusky Thrush, Beeley, Derbyshire 10 Dec 2016|
|Masked Wagtail, Camrose, Pembrokeshire 11 Dec 2016|
|Blue Rock Thrush, Stow on the Wold, 29 Dec 2016|
And to cap the trip off, a female Black-throated Thrush showed itself fairly well at St Asaph having also been in the area for a couple of weeks. Thrushes galore and seven new birds for me in Britain this year - five of them lifers. I had none in 2015.
- Penduline Tit (2) 24 Jan, Gloucester.
- Pallid Harrier 18 Feb, Norfolk
- Purple Swamphen, 5 Aug, Minsmere
- Black-browed Albatross, 5 Oct, Bempton
- Siberian Accentor, 14 Oct, Easington
- Dusky Thrush, 10 Dec, Beeley
- Blue Rock Thrush 29 Dec, Stow on the Wold.
A truly amazing birding year. I need my football team to have one next year! :/