Monday, 5 January 2015

Pendulines: 0 Great Grey: 1

After missing the Penduline Tits again at Darts Farm (by 10 seconds!) on Friday I really wanted to give them one more try yesterday - fourth time lucky!  It was Dave's fourth attempt too, between us we've put in quite a lot of time on these birds over the Christmas break. But it was not to be. After three hours of standing around patiently in the cold staring at bulrushes, we had little to show for our efforts: 3 Stonechats, a few Chiffchaff, a Kingfisher, the flock of Brents (sans Black Brant) and frozen legs! By one o'clock we decided they just weren't going to show and headed off to try and catch up with the Great Grey Shrike at Aylesbeare Common instead.

At last a bit of luck. It was hanging out exactly where we heard it had been seen earlier in the day. Though initially distant, two 'bird watchers' went to a great effort to repeatedly flush it and it did come slightly nearer to us (merci!) and eventually it passed to within about 60 ft of us. It would have stayed quite happily but was then flushed by a walker and appeared to fly high over the main road towards Hawkerland. Pity the light was so bad:

Great Grey Shrike: Dave Helliar
Great Grey Shrike: R. Harris
Great Grey Shrike: R. Harris

A few more local birds from this week, thanks to Dave Helliar for the photos:

Black Redstart at Brean Down: D. Helliar
Mallard on ice, Chard: D. Helliar
Drake Goosander, Chard: D. Helliar

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