Monday, March 21, 2011

Yesterday ...

No, I'm not about to do a cover of a Beatles song !  Set off a tad on the lates side in the 3rd different mini bus of the year for Newport wetlands (Gwent I believe). Fair run down there and the sun came out despite what the weatherman said.  Newport is a very pleasant looking reserve but has some strange views

As is the case this time of year it was quiet, WInter stuff gone, summer stuff not quite here yet but we liked the look of the place - well worth another visit methinks.  Hears about 3 Cetti's warblers and 4 Chifchaffs but the rest was the usual suspects - Mallard, Gadwall, Pochard, Mute Swan, Shoveler, Coot, Gt Crested Grebe, Little Grebe,

We had fleeting glimpses of Bearded Tit in the reed beds and from the sea wall Avocet, Curlew& Shelduck. The facilities are good though.

We then drove the 4 or so miles to the other side of the reserve to the lagoons where there was a good selection of Waders (reminiscent of Snettisham ... or it will be in a few years time) where it was much of the same apart from Redshank, Spotted Redshank and a Greenshank - duly noted & called in to Birdguides ( I had to do it twice cos I forgot the location first time !! ... damn this cold)

From here we shot up to New Fancy View with a quick stop at Canop Ponds where we had cracking views of Mandarin Duck, ( I wish I'd taken my Camera now !) Treecreeper and Nuthatch. then back in the bus and a quick dash.  NF viewpoint saw local who said " I've been here for about an hour and seen nothing"  hmm, 25 minute before they shut the gate -didn't look good.  Still we got Goldcrest and Coaltit in the conifers in front of us and then Mr Maddox hit the homer, sitting in the open in a stand of conifers a bostin (as they say in these parts) Goshawk, looking at him he'd no doubt seen us and was wondering what the hell we were doing so 10 minutes to spare.

The Team on Goshawk Watch

With the new enthusiasm we had we decided to nip to Parkend Church to try for some Hawfinches but sadly in the imortal words of Kath Oldbird "hero to zero in 30 minutes"  Not a sniff of one but we did get Gt Spotted Woodpecker, Green Woodpecker, Jay, Mistle Thrush, Great, Blue and Longtailed Tits, and even better views of a Nuthatch.  In the field next to the church we had 6 Song Thrushes at one point ( I should have taken the sound recorder as well!!) and a couple of Jackdaws.

So the verdict - Damn good day out and worth a visit again - Newport does suffer from the 'non birding' general public (or it did yesterday) but if it sparks one or two of the kids to take up natural history then thats a good thing. I will become another Titchwell I think in time and we can all use some of these!

The rest of the trip - I think whilst there isn't one place ( apart from NFV ) that shout out as part of a birding trip they are really good with a good selection of birds on view... Maybe a Saturday trip!


Friday, March 18, 2011

New book

Well, l was looking at my book case and suddenly realised I had a gap so I bought this. You just know its going to be a rivetting read.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Final one from the weekend.

On the friday evening we tried for the short eared owls and Barn Owls , we saw them but the light was so bad there wasn't a chance of a shot even at 400 ISO.

So here are some geese (probably Grey Lags) heading over to the Humber and looked nice against the sky.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Couple more from the weekend

OK so theres 3 photo's but who's counting

Proper post

Rather than the auto updates I thought I'd write something for once!

I had a few days at Barton on Humber staying with friends and on saturday we went in search of Adders ... Absolutely brilliant as you can see from my Flikr site or some of the same shots below.