Saturday, 26 March 2016

Out & About

Good Friday 25/03/2016
Went to Longham Lakes this morning (08.55 –11.00 hrs) a wonderful sunny mornings walk round the lake
the highlights were
Med Gulls 74 settled on the water and two flying about
Reed Bunting – 10
Shoveler –10
Lesser Black backed Gull –1
Black-headed Gull c130 settled on the water
Cetti’s Warbler – 2 one calling in the north west corner and one on the north east side of the lake just before east fields
Chiffchaff –2 very smart looking birds singing
Lapwing – 1 on the large island
Plus the usual fare that is on and around the lake.
Then back home for a spot of lunch then off to Lytchett Fields ( 13.30-15.25 hrs) with my son hopefully to find him Nuthatch, Treecreeper and a LRP for myself.
Well I found him the Nuthatch not just one but two both calling at times the fields were very quiet with only c30 Black-tailed Godwits, 1 Green Sandpiper,
Teal, Shelduck and Little Egrets on Frenchs Field and Sherford Pools. Two Med Gulls in the air with plenty of Black-headed Gulls hawking for insects
Plenty of corvids feeding on the ploughed field and 3 Buzzards but sadly no Little Ringed Plover for me,oh well next time maybe.
2cy Buzzard over Lytchett Fields
Phone Scoped Reed Bunting Singing
Patch List to date

Longham Lakes: 63 species seen and 66 points

Lytchett Fields: 76 species seen and 86 points

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

A local Twitch

This afternoon I final made time to go and see the Pallas's Warbler at Portesham
but first I head over to Durlston with the hope of catching up with some Razorbills and Guillimots but they were not there so after watching a Adder and getting a distance photo . I headed off to go Portesham but on the way I was think how do I get there from this direction when all of a sudden I had flashing blue lights in my rear view mirror, I pulled over at the nearest point I could and the car pulled in behind me, were this unmarked car came I do not know so they did me for doing 40 mph in a 30 mph zone I should have been more aware of the speed signs so now I have got to go on a driver aware course.
I eventually found the car park after asking a couple of birders I saw walking along the road and got direction for the bird.And what a lovely little bird it is, I do hope I get to see one of these again.
The bird is only 9-10cm long and about 4-7 grams in weight, it breeds in Siberia, through Northern Mongolia to Northeastern China and winters in subtropical China and in parts of Asia .
This little bird though as spent the last four maybe five weeks in Dorset so as most likely wintered here for a while. It will not be long be until it takes off on its long flight of 5,000 Km to its breeding grounds.
The photo does not do the bird justice it was a lovely looking bird with a yellow median crown stripe, yellow supercilium and black eye stripe. Two yellow wing bars and a primrose yellow rump with white under parts, just lovely to watch.
Adder at Durlston

Pallas's Warbler.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

A Great Find

 (12/03/2016), Saturday  morning I got up not sure whether to go and see the Pala's Warbler at Portsham or go to one of my patch work challenge site. So while having a brew I thought about it and decided to go to Lytchett Fields I really like this place it seems to have everything from lanes lined with hedges, small wooded area open Pasteur and flooded pools and salt marsh and a large bay which is good when the tide is out and not bad when in ,in the winter.
The place as given me some nice lifers last year and a new this year, there is something special about the place and it seem to produce the goods. I do not now if this is because I spend more time there now or I am getting to be a better birder? or both?
Saturdays walks was  wonderful I had the place to my self and just wondered round watching and ticking of the birds seen. As I walked down Slough Lane near to the cottage I ticked off the visit new bird for the list with a Jay. I got to the Pools field and started scanning for any Water Pipits but alas there were none today, while doing this a Raven came in from now were and nabbed what looked like a frog the second new bird for the list. There was not much on the Pool a few Redshank, Little Egret, some Teal and a Green Sandpiper so after watching this bit for a bit I headed of to the fields.
Walking down the muddy lane the birds were in good song with Robins and Great Tits proclaiming the territories.
But as I neared the style I got a shock  looking up in to the trees looking for Treecreeper I suddenly heard a sound a sort of piping squeaking sound that I had not heard before so I started scanning the tree when I saw a small bird and thought now way can it be, I started to shake with excitement as I watched the bird through my binoculars. Then i remember I had my camera and I had to try and get some captures of this new bird, a lifer, and a bird I have always wanted to see!! The bird was a very tiny woodpecker no bigger than a sparrow, it was a wonderful male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker a real grab the air moment and shout yes inside my mind I was so excited,here are some record shot of the bird.

Male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker

The back of a male Lesser Spotted Woodpecker

A capture showing how small this woodpecker is
The Lytchett list is now up to 73 species with the lastest birds seen in bold below.

Red Kite 06/03/16
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker = Lifer

Saturday, 5 March 2016

Longham 1st and 2nd trips in March

On Friday the 4th I dropped in to Longham Lake on the way home from work to do some patch watching. February was very slow and with it now being spring though the weather does not know it as it was bitterly cold in the wind and by the time I had gone round the south lake it started to feel like snow but turned in to a hail storm.
Lucky by then I had seen all that I could see a round the lake and fields,it was Hampreston Fields that came up with the new birds for March and what a nice species to find my first for the site to boot.
While scanning the fields from the west bank going through the Swans and hoping for a Bewicks as one was reported earlier at Harbribge,but the were all Mute Swans I noticed a cock pheasant by some scrub.Then I started to look at the few remaining pools that were left after the recent flooding and found 16 wonderful Black-tailed Godwits.

Two of 16 Black-tailed Godwits
Sunday 5th I went back in the afternoon as I was over that way, well you just have to make the most of the weather at the moment.
The lakes were very quiet again though 16 pochard still remained on North Lake, walking along the west bank again I came across some Long-tailed Tits I watched these for a bit hoping other birds would be tagging along with them and they were this technique of standing watching and listing gave me another new bird with a Goldcrest. Their were 4 in total and I watched these for a while hoping as the were in and out of the brambles they would bring out a firecrest with them but this did not happen. Still it was nice watching these tiny birds zipping about searching for insects, along with these there were 4 very active Chiffchaff also here and there seaching for food.

South Lake looking back towards the North shore
These two days a total of four hours patch working as brought the list up to 58 species seen since the 1st of January. New and Recent birds in bold.

Mute Swan
Greylag Goose
Canada goose
Tufted Duck
Little Grebe
Great Crested Grebe
Little Egret
Grey Heron
Black-tailed Godwit
Black-headed Gull
Mediterranean Gull
Common Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Herring Gull
Great Black-backed Gull
Feral Pigeon
Collared Dove
Green Woodpecker
Meadow Pipit
Grey Wagtail
Pied Wagtail
Song Thrush
Long tailed Tit
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Carrion Crow
House Sparrow
Reed Bunting