Just had to go back to the chase today to try & get a better photo of a male Crossbill!! The birds just didn't perform coming down only once in 3hrs & when they did a member of the public walked right down to me asking what i'd got before producing his pocket camera & walking up to them (Bye Bye Crossbills) You couldn't make it up!! At least i managed a few shots before they scattered also nearby a cpl of Woodlark! on the way home i popped into Upper Longdon & picked up the Great Grey Shrike,10+ Brambling & 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers so not a bad few hours out!!
Tuesday 28 February 2012
With the car flying thru its MOT & the garage fitting me in 1st it left me nearly a full day to get out & about despite the gloom i headed for Cannock Chase & got myself settled by a large puddle & waited for the Crossbills to come into drink,the birds came in about every hour or so & i managed to get some nice shots before rain stopped play!!
Sunday 26 February 2012
With not being bothered with travelling to far after a week of nights i decided on a short journey upto Cannock Chase just for a stroll around & see what i could pick up!!!! 4 Woodlark was certainly a highlight along with 30+ Crossbill & 2 Stonechat!! I made an attempt at photographing the Crossbills but it was so busy with walkers/bikers etc i gave up (1 for in the week when i'm nxt off!!) did manage a cpl of record shots of the Woodlark though so not all bad!!
A trip upto Hartshill Hayes for the resident Tawny Owls was the order of the day (my 1st trip up since 2007) its only on the doorstep but just seems to pass me by!! A quick call to Mark Maddox & picked up on route soon had me watching 2 birds of the 4 present in the immediate area!! With Mark getting me a year tick i decided to repay the favour & take him over to Upper Longdon,Staffs for the Great Grey Shrike which i must say performed well after about 1/2hr!!! also picked up flyover Crossbill,Woodcock & a Munjac walking up the track oblivious to us watching it (Why i never photographed it i'll never know??) not a bad cpl of hrs out!!!
Saturday 18 February 2012
With an unexpected day off work I had planned to head south for another crack at the Junco in Hampshire,but on looking on Birdguides on Thurs night my plans were quickly changed COMMON YELLOWTHROAT!!! Rhiwderin Gwent just stared back at me from the computer screen!!! a quick phone call to good mate Andy Jones & the trip was planned,arriving on site at about 08:40 with at least 70 cars already on site & at least 200 birders already present (It was going to be fun!!) The call went up several times & apart from a few mindless/headless/sheep/excited numpties running into the hedges/copse the crowd were largely well behaved!! The bird was very mobile & I had to wait at least an hour for a proper view not helped by Andy who'd already had fantastic views down the slope from me!! after a cpl of hours the bird showed well but with a big noisy crowd not close enough for anything but record shots (but not complaining a World Lifer & Brit Tick)
Wednesday 15 February 2012
With the voice of the Tame Valley (Tom Perrins) ringing me asking if i fancied a trip down to Calshot,Hants for the Spanish Sparrow etc over the weekend my Sunday was planned!! met up with Tom & Jules Allen at 7am & took a leisurely drive down arriving on site by 9-30ish & were rewarded with views almost straight away (Result!!) a few record shots were taken (on the wrong setting i must add! resulting in a few sly comments & cussing on my part) with Tom & Jules getting the views they wanted they took the chance to have a look around the marshes whilst i waited for the bird to perform!!! it did but always up high & then flew to the other end of the close onto some feeders (Don't do feeder shots) so decided to head upto the marshes to catch up with the boys,I got up onto the footpath down by the Power station when I stopped to put my gloves on looked up & there was the Sparrow 30ft in front of me singing!!! You couldn't make it up shots took (happy bunny) caught up with the boys had a few decent year ticks with Black Redstart & Peregrine being the highlights!!! before we moved onto Hawkhill Inclosure in the New Forest for the Dark-eyed Junco which showed reasonably well despite the group of rather noisy birders trying their best to create a football crowd!!! a superb day & many thanks to Tom for the driving!!!!