Friday, 19 May 2017

Spring seawatching

When the wind went SW and picked up on Monday morning my thoughts turned to the sea. Naturally I didn't actually do anything until I heard that a few poms and a long-tailed skua had been seen off Toe Head to the west. So I shuffled out to the head and had no sooner sat down than 3 pomarine skuas flew west - fully spooned - cracking! I managed another group of two and a single in the next two hours, also cashing in year tick gank such as puffin, bonxie, sooty shearwater and storm petrel. Five seawatching year ticks - just like that!

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Blue-headed wagtail !!

Another quiet morning round Galley though I didn't have long. I've been checking the few cow flocks on patch for associated wagtails the last few mornings with no luck but on my last stop before home this morning I struck lucky! A cracking blue-headed wagtail was in amongst the cattle, although it didn't make for easy photography...

hiding in the grass

out in the open

amongst the cows
Good record for Galley - yellow wagtail is tricky enough here, and this is my first flava-type on patch!

Monday, 8 May 2017

Putting Bushveld back in his box

Far be it from me to be getting boastful, (particularly this spring!), but even without much in the way of migrants I've managed to get back ahead of Bushveld!

Yes indeedy, even this weekend with very limited free time on patch I managed to glean swift, siskin, mistle thrush and a fine brace of tysties! All very welcome I'm sure you'll agree.

All this excitement keeps me firmly ahead of Bushveld, although my spring is winding down while his is probably only just getting going. Lets hope for a nice run of westerlies for the next few weeks ooop north hey?

To finish, a wee snap of the showy grasshopper warbler that has been frequenting the field by shite lane crossroads all week. Not as close or obliging today as the other night when I didn't have my camera, obvs!

A gropper yesterday

Happy days


Sunday, 7 May 2017

Keeping Seppy in his place

Seeing that Seppy bagged a few birds during the week I thought I'd best give the patch a bit of a grilling before he gets too carried away.

Bagged a few dunlin and a common sand.  Those with a few regular migrants puts Seppy back in his place.

74 species at 69.16%

Happy days


Friday, 5 May 2017

Royzah blows his trumpet

A missive from Senor Royzah the other night (for it was him), leads me to update the blog. He's been blawing on about the first Shoveler for five years and also bagged a bar-tailed godwit on the weekend. Plus wheatear and willow warbler and bits.

As for Galley, well, I've been slogging away for a few bits - barwit for me was good, while wood warbler last weekend was even better - only my second here, and this one was a finds tick! However, the worry now is as we head into May that the North-east is just about to wake from its winter slumbers, while down here its nearly almost over fir the summer...

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Garden birds

Found this hanging around my front garden yesterday afternoon.

A patch bird for Reg...

A wee cracker that I thought worth sharing

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Patch birding at its finest

What a months end...

who needs red-winged blackbird when you've got patch birding?

With the winds turning south-easterly it was definitely worth stretching ones legs around the patch.  My efforts were well rewarded with three mega rares on the patch in the space of a couple of days.

The first, a fine pair of GREY PARTRIDGE, skilfully flushed I think you'll find from some deep cover near the cliff tops; possible migrants I thought? But then... I didn't really care as they were most definitely full fat patch ticks.

Still delighted with my find, I wandered off down to the 'moat' where there's some nice bushes for some nice migs (sometimes).  Ten minutes later with only a willow warbler added to the year list,  two mallard flew off from the moat and behind them, scuttling into to edge of the bank, was a MOORHEN.  Would you believe it? yet another full FFPT... awesome.  What a bird it was.  I sat and admired it, whilst looking forward to the golden mallard winging its way to me at the years end.

Today was bit of let down really, but the pair of mute swan on the great pool were the first ones since 2014...BONUS

What an end to the month.  Although, on reflection, I do think I'd rather have a red-winged blackbird...

At the end of April, patch total of 69 sp, 64.49%

Happy days