Sunday, 27 March 2011

What a beautiful day.

Robin Chiffchaff
Red Legged Partridge

Coal Tit
Spring Flowers

Tried to take some photos today of the Sandmartins which have just returned but it is so difficult as they fly so quickly. It is lovely to hear so many Chiffchaffs again this year and they seem to be everywhere. We had a trip over to Hawnby and had tea there in the local tea room, sitting outside in the late afternoon sunshine, it was so relaxing and pleasant.

Saturday, 26 March 2011

A Cold Wind

Pink Footed Geese
Meadow Pipit
Little Ringed Plover
Red Grouse
Grey Heron
It was so cold in the hide at Scaling Dam this afternoon, especially after the warm days we had through the week. Outside the hide in the chill wind was a Little Ringed Plover, two Ringed Plover and a Dunlin along with quite a few Meadow Pipits. The Wood Duck remained asleep directly opposite the hide on the far bank all the time we were there and two Pink Footed Geese flew in with some Greylags and proceeded to swim directly in front of the hide. At first we thought from a distance one was the Bean Goose which had been reported but both had pink on the beaks and both definately had pink legs. On the way up to Scaling when passing through Danby there were literally hundreds of Winter thruses massing in the trees near the Moors Centre. We also saw a Wheatear at Sleddale along with more Winter thruhes in the wood at the cattle grid.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Bats Galore

Spring Daffs

Old Tree Stump
Lesser Black Backed Gulls

Can't stay in when the weather is good so have been going out all this week on early evening walks as soon as we come in from work to enjoy the last of the sunshine. Went down to the river at Neasham tonight and saw three female and one male Goosander on the river there. Heard a Chiffchaff singing and a Tawny Owl at very close quarters but could not locate it in someones back garden. We were amazed at the number of bats flying in Neasham and along the road between Neasham and Hurworth as the sun went down. The daffodils looked stunning in the sunset.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Life Beyond......

Life on the Moon
Could not resist putting this photo of the moon we took on Friday evening, look closely, you never know what you might see!!

What a weasel.


Well,actually mowed the back lawn today - it now smells like spring in the garden. Went to the local garden centre to get some new plants for the window boxes and then had a run down to RSPB Saltholme to see our first Wheatear of the year, a lovely male at that. Had a run up to Dormans Pool which was very quiet apart from a weasel which provided much entertainment as it ran backwards and forwards between the rocks at the edge of the roadway. The track has been filled in and is now greatly improved if you haven't been along there of late. Also there was a pair of Stonechat collecting nesting material so at least they have survived the harsh winter.

Saturday, 19 March 2011

Spring has nearly sprung!

CurlewRed Grouse
Grouse - camouflage
Marsh Tit
Common Redpoll
Song Thrush
Today showed signs that spring is nearly with us. Went for a walk around Swainby while Sylvia was Horse riding and caught up with my first Chiffchaff of the year, Bullfinch were stripping the new buds from the trees and the sun was shining! also heard couple of Tawny Owls on my walk and saw 4 Buzzards circling over Whorl hill.
Afternoon saw us heading up to the Stang forest where the Crossbills were still easily found, with a flock of Redpoll and Siskin. 9 Black Grouse were also in the area.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

What weather!

Green Woodpecker
Pink Footed Geese

It doesn't get any better, the guided walk this morning was wet and cold with very few, if any birds of note about. It was good however to meet new people and although we got wet and cold it was an enjoyable morning. There were 10 Avocet from the bus stop hide, plenty of Shelduck and Redshank and a Pintail in the pools along the Long Drag along with a fox and some Roe Deer.
3 Pink Footed Geese were still in the fields along Belasis Ave.
After drying out at home and doing some shopping the sun eventually came out later in the afternoon so we decided to go for a run out to Osmotherly. We stopped for coffee up by Chequers where we have previously seen a Green Woodpecker and sure enough after a while it appeared. There were lots of Lapwing and Curlew around and a flock of Chaffinch with a Brambling present. Although it was cold it was a lovely end to the day.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

They came to say goodbye.


Red Legged Partridge
(Sorry Mick but couldn't resist putting these on the blog)

As I was on my way out to horseriding this morning and about to lock the back door I heard that unmistakable 'trilling'. I looked round to see about 50 Waxwings sitting in the tree at the other side of our fence, I could not believe it. I ran to shout Mick (who was still in bed) and we managed to get some photos before I had to go to the garage which frightened them off. They flew across to the field along with another flock of about 50 which must have been in the trees further along the road. It was a good start to the day and probably the last we will see of them until next Winter. Went to my favourite place - Helmsley later in the day and had a run along the road to Mardale. We saw two Buzzards, a Merlin sitting on a fence but too far away for photos. The Lapwings were back on territory on the moor along with a few curlew and there were lots of Hares in the fields on the way back. Also spotted a flock of Redwing presumably getting ready to head home too.
We are leading a guided walk tomorrow down at Greatham Creek, Seal Sands so hope somebody turns up and hope there is something to see, although at least the Avocets are back so we will be able to see them.