Wednesday, 28 January 2009

25/1/09 Holywell, Linton and Cresswell Ponds

Woke up this morning and looked outside and was welcomed by 4 long-tailed tits in my garden. We decided to go to Holywell Ponds first and see what was there then move on so that's where we went. When we got out of the car, a kestrel flew over our heads and onto the grass right in front of us. Then it took off again but came back flying right towards us and I got some photos. When we went into Holywell, we found out that it was a special day and we got given a booklet of what birds we might see. In the feeding station, there was greenfinches, chaffinches, robins, a great-spotted woodpecker and a water rail. After a while we left for Linton. When we got there we went right to the first hide which had nothing of interest. The other hide was much better. When we went in, I scanned the gulls for the glaucous but no sign. However the ducks were better. The rare ones contained a shoveler, pochard and a female scaup. There were loads of teal and Canadian geese but no wigeon which was surprising. Next onto Cresswell. On the way in we looked for the barn owl but it wasn't there. In the hide the red-breasted mergansers were in front of the hide and I got some photos. Nothing else of interest until we got outside the hide when we saw 2 stock doves which was a nice sighting.
Red-Breasted Mergansers

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Tits and Finches at Big Waters 18/1/09

I have noticed that long-tailed tits are becoming more common. I saw 4 in my garden, 5 at Big Waters and 1 in my garden yesterday. Also, I went to Big Waters (again) and saw a goldfinch at the feeding station. On numerous occasions, I have seen siskin at Big Waters and today I saw a goosander from the hide but it dived to quick for a photo. Also there was 7 snipe, 34 greylags, loads of teal, wigeon, mallard and tree sparrows. Unfortunately, no sign of the sparrowhawk or woodpecker but, although we missed it, a man said that there had been a kingfisher right in front of the hide.
Long-Tailed Tit

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Thornley Wood 4-1-09

We were going to go to Cragside but it was shut so we went to Thornley Wood instead. When we got there, I noticed there was a mini feeding station with mostly great tits and 1 nuthatch. When we had finished lunch, we went and had a look at the map of the reserve. We saw there was a hide with a big feeding station so we went there. When we got in, we saw loads of little birds flying around such as robins, great tits and blue tits. After just a few minutes, a red kite flew over being chased by a crow. Not long after that, my dad noticed a bird in a tree which was a bullfinch. It was too far away for a photo but then 2 flew down and sat right in front of the hide when I got a photo. I noticed there was no coal tits and I wondered why but then I thought I'd seen one and got a photo. When I looked closer at the photo, I saw it was a willow tit! Shortly after, I saw a brown bird climbing a tree, quite far away and I realised it was a treecreeper. It was quite far away but it came and sat on a tree right next to us when I got the photo.
Willow Tit

Friday, 2 January 2009

29-12-08 Big Waters

We decided to go to Big Waters because I wanted to see the little birds at the feeding station with my new Northumberland Wildlife Trust key that I got for Christmas. First, we went into the smaller hide and had a look on the lake. There were plenty of ducks and geese (Mostly greylag geese, wigeon and teal) but that was all. Then we went to the main hide that overlooks the feeding station. When I got there, there was blue tits, great tits, robins, chaffinches and tree sparrow and about 5 siskin. Later a great spotted woodpecker dropped in as well. I got plenty of photos and I liked the siskin because I haven't seen many of them so that was an advantage.
Male Siskin
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Also I saw a blackcap in my garden on 31/12/08. Here is the photo: