Friday, 31 December 2010

OK, some more year list stats before the New Year comes

I have already done a round up of some of my personal highlights of 2010 but here are some interesting totals rare/scarce birds I have had over this year:

2 Black-throated Thrush - One at Newholme in NYorks and one at Hartlepool Headland in Durham, a first for the county!

2 Red-flanked Bluetail - One at Newbiggin by the sea in Northumberland and one the following day at St Mary's Island in Northumberland.

3 Great Grey Shrikes - One on Holy Island in Northumberland and one at Seaton Pond in Durham and then one at Sleddale in North Yorkshire.

2 Red-backed Shrike - One at Cley in Norfolk, a stunning male! One in Durham at Hendon Docks a juvenile bird.

2 Broad-billed Sandpiper - One at Saltholme RSPB in Teesside, Durham. One at South Gare in NYorks discovered whilst looking for a reported Citrine Wagtail!

2 Arctic Redpoll - Two at Rainton Meadows DWT, Durham on the 29th of December. A real snowball of a bird and then a 1st winter bird (not yet 100% confirmed).

4 Shorelark - One at Trow Quarry, Durham and this was a lifer. Three at North Gare on the beach with some Snow Buntings.

What a superb year for multiple numbers of the same rare and scarce birds.

Here is a list of all the new lifers I had in 2010 as well as where I saw it and the date on which I first saw the species:


Green - Relatively common and widespread birds.

Blue - Scarce birds in the UK
Orange - Rare birds in the UK
RED - Exceptionally rare birds in the UK

224 – Mandarin Duck - Chester-le-Street Park - 08/01/2010
225 – Black-throated Thrush - Newholme - 16/01/2010
226 – Ring-necked Duck - Cowpen Bewley WPK - 24/01/2010
227 – Black-necked Grebe - Silksworth Lake - 27/01/2010
228 – Black Redstart - Newburn Bridge - 30/01/2010
229 – Woodcock- Chapman's Well - 15/02/2010
230 – Bean Goose - Cresswell Pond NWT - 19/02/2010
231 – Green-winged Teal - Druridge Pools - 27/02/2010
232 – American Wigeon - Caerlaverock WWT - 28/02/2010
233 – Common Crossbill - Kielder Forest - unknown date
234 – Capercaillie - Loch Garden RSPB - 17/04/2010
235 – Crested Tit - Aviemore - 17/04/2010
236 – Ptarmigan - Cairngorm Mountains - 17/04/2010
237 - Wood Sandpiper - Saltholme RSPB - 27/04/2010
238 - Wood Warbler - undisclosed site - 08/05/2010
239 - IBERIAN CHIFFCHAFF - Potteric Carr YWT - 29/05/2010
240 - Montagu's Harrier - undisclosed site - 29/05/2010
241 - Woodlark - undislosed site - 30/05/2010
242 - Stone Curlew - Weeting Heath NWT - 30/05/2010
243 - Cetti's Warbler - Titchwell RSPB - 31/05/2010
244 - TRUMPETER FINCH - Blakney Point - 31/05/2010
245 - Turtle Dove - Norfolk - 02/06/2010
246 - Dartford Warbler - Dunwitch Heath - 02/06/2010
247 - Purple Heron - Minsmere RPSB - 02/06/2010
248 - Nightingale - Minsmere RSPB - 02/06/2010
249 - Nightjar - Salthouse Heath - 03/06/2010
250 - Broad-billed Sandpiper - Saltholme RSPB - 07/06/2010
251 - Dotterel - Crimdon Dene - 09/07/2010
252 - Storm Petrel - Whitburn - 17/07/2010
253 - White-rumped Sandpiper - Saltholme RSPB - 28/07/2010
254 - Whiskered Tern - Saltholme RSPB - 28/07/2010
255 - Sooty Shearwater - Whitburn - 02/08/2010
256 - Baird's Sandpiper - Idle Valley NR - 10/08/2010
257 - Balearic Shearwater - Whitburn - 13/08/2010
258 - Spotted Crake - Shibdon Pond - 15/08/2010
259 - SYKES'S WARBLER - Druridge Bay - 16/08/2010
260 - Icterine Warbler - The Leas Mound, Durham - 24/08/2010
261 - Bonaparte's Gull - Whitburn Steel, Durham - 31/08/2010
262 - EASTERN OLIVACEOUS WARBLER - Flamborough Head - 01/09/2010
263 - Greenish Warbler - The Leas, Whitburn - 02/09/2010
264 - Barred Warbler - Flamborough Head - 04/09/2010
265 - Lapland Bunting - Ryhope, Durham - 04/09/2010
266 - White-winged Black Tern - Cresswell Pond NWT - 15/09/2010
267 - SHARP-TAILED SANDPIPER - Greatham Creek - 20/09/2010
268 - Woodchat Shrike - Hartlepool Headland - 26/09/2010
269 - Shorelark - Trow Quarry, Durham - 28/09/2010
270 - Great Grey Shrike - Holy Island - 02/10/2010
271 - Red-breasted Flycatcher - Whitburn CPK - 09/10/2010
272 - Red-flanked Bluetail - Newbiggin, Northumberland - 09/10/2010
273 - Dusky Warbler - Tynemouth - 10/10/2010
274 - Little Auk - Whitburn - 16/10/2010
275 - Pomarine Skua - Whitburn - 16/10/2010
276 - Pallas's Warbler - St Mary's Island - 17/10/2010
277 - Rough-legged Buzzard - Sleddale, N Yorks - 22/10/2010
278 - AMERICAN BITTERN - Walmsley Sanctuary, Cornwall - 05/11/2010
279 - GREEN HERON - Lost Gardens of Heligan, Cornwall - 05/11/2010
280 - PIED-BILLED GREBE - Hollingworth Lake, Manchester - 10/11/2010
281 - Squacco Heron - Morpeth, Northumberland - 10/11/2010
       - Ross's Goose - Wooler, Northumberland - 13/11/2010
282 - Bewick's Swan - Boldon Flatts, Durham - 18/11/2010
283 - Mealy Redpoll - Rainton Meadows DWT - 15/12/2010
284 - Arctic Redpoll - Rainton Meadows DWT  - 29/12/2010

Wednesday, 29 December 2010

Hoary, Redpoll!!!

See what I did there? If not get swatted up on your Redpolls.

I bring good news I finally managed to catch up with one of the Arctic Redpolls at Rainton Meadows. I managed to dip the bird on the morning but thankfully managed to score with a bird on the afternoon. So here is the brief story:

On climbing to the top of the hill we were alerted that some Redpolls had gathered to a mini feeding area. After a few minutes of having a look through the birds I saw a few Mealy Redpolls and a handful of Lessers. Also plenty of Goldfinch and plenty of Siskin around. Then this bird caught my attention, I kept my bins on it and it flew and I was sure I saw a white pale rump. I said "Is that the Arctic?" after some bad directions the bird came further out and then came and sat on the fence in front of us. It very slowly moved its wings down to reveal a nice large pale rump and apparently my mate noted the small stubby bill as well. It flew off and then reappeared minutes later with a few Goldfinch, I believe it was at this point where it showed us its all white rump again. It was all a bit of a blur but I think twice I saw the all white pale rump when it flashed it at the crowd, I saw the bird far better when it was in the tree with 3 Goldfinches so I probably saw the all white rump through my scope better at this point. Smiles all around when it finally flew off and we nailed it as a definite Arctic Redpoll, all were in agreement that it was in fact an Arctic. I find it comforting to know that people present had previous experience with Arctic Redpoll and agreed with the ID.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

3 Minutes of Madness

Another post not really about birds, just something I find very humorous so I thought I would share it will my followers.

Its basically 3 minutes of madness which should you thinking "So what was all that about?", its from a film called Hoodwinked. You will either love it and laugh or hate it and cringe, if you have kids they will also no doubt find it funny. So here is the video:

On a bird related topic after 6 attempts each lasting about 4 hours each I still haven't seen the Arctic Redpolls at Rainton Meadows.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Sunday, 26 December 2010

Not on an Arctic Roll

Again today I managed to dip the Arctic Redpolls at Rainton Meadows DWT. I have been going on a fairly regular basis and both Arctic Redpolls have managed to evade me despite he fact I have easily clocked up about 12+ hours just within this past week.

Hopefuly if I keep at it eventually I will come up trumps and see at least one of he Arctic Redpolls. I would love fonder be more frosty bird but at this rate I would just be happy to see a Arctic Redpoll!! I would have loved to have seen one on boxing day but sadly it was not to be.

I am currently on my iPhone so I unable to post any links mainly because I am lazy and I can't be bothered to go, find the links and then copy and paste the link here.SO if you are I interested go to BirdGuides and take a look at the Cousc's Arctic Redpoll page and you can see images of he less frost bird taken my a mate of mine local county recorder Mark Newsome. The more frosty bird was seen later on in the afternoon but high quailiy images of this bird have yet to surface. Record shots have been taken and these can be seen on the Durham birdin thread on BirdForum.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Friday, 24 December 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to everyone who reads my blog. God bless you over this very special holiday season.

!! Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!

Here is one of my favourite appropriate songs that I feel sums up the season:

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Caution: You might not care! (Bird of the Year)

Hi folks, thought I would do my yearly roundup and choose a favorite bird for this year. I will give my top 5 favorites of this year and then say why, I will start with 5 and then work my way to 1. Last years bird of the year was Eastern Crowned Warbler, that will take some beating I can tell ya!

In at number 5 / Sykes's Warbler in Northumberland / Rarity: MEGA 
When I first heard about the bird I can't say I was all that bothered, but I knew I wanted to see it! I am so glad I went as it was a fantastic bird and it showed well at times and I got some cracking views. When I found out how rare the bird was on the mainland I was extremely pleased. But who cares how rare it is? It was a nice bird to see and another educational bird for me.
(Sykes's Warbler - © James Robson)

In at number 4 / Sharp-tailed Sandpiper in Durham / Rarity: MEGA
I can remember looking at a photo on BirdGuides of a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper that was at Spurn a few years ago, when I saw how rare it was I thought to myself that I would never see one in the UK. I missed my chance to go and see the Spurn bird and thought that was defiantly it, then a few weeks later a bird turned up in Teesside. When news came through I had just finished watching The Simpsons after my first day at University, I refreshed BirdGuides and saw the three little red !!! next to a bird, being interested in all mega rare birds in the UK I looked and was shocked at what I saw. I had to read it again to make sure I had got it right, I had my tea and then went down to Teesside and saw it well about 5 minutes before darkness fell. I also went to go and see it the next day and saw it even better and at closer range. What a bird!

(Sharp-tailed Sandpiper - © Mick Brennan)

In at number 3 / American Bittern in Cornwall / Rarity: MEGA
Sharp-tailed Sandpiper would have been here but considering this is the first twitchable American Bittern for about 10 years I couldn't not put it in at number 3. When I saw the bird it was simply superb! I twitched it with Ghost of Stringer and a mate of his, we saw it well from the tower hide. But Gary suggested we checked the small hide where it has only been seen from once before the day before we were there. We went in and 3 blokes were in scanning around and they said they hadn't seen it from that hide. after about 5 mins one of the guys picked it up. We watched and waited pretty much biting our nails and then eventually it walked out right into the open on the grass briefly before retreating back into the reedbed. We has simply superb views and smiles all around, the day was topped of by a Green Heron which was also near by. Best days birding I had this year without a doubt. I doubt there will be another American Bittern in the next 10 years or so.
(American Bittern - © Ghost of Stringer)

In at number 2 / Rough-legged Buzzard in North Yorkshire / Rarity: Scarce
One of these bird I looked at in BirdGuides when I was younger and didn't think I would ever see one in the UK. But thankfully this year I had superb views of at least 3 birds plus a whole host of raptors and a Great Grey Shrike along the way.
(Rough-legged Buzzard - © Derek Charlton)

In at number 1 / MONTAGU'S HARRIER in Norfolk / Rarity: Scarce
Sadly I can't say where but all I will say was this was another bird I didn't think I was ever going to see. I am really keen on my birds of prey and therefore this bird is number 1 for this year for me!

(Montagu's Harrier - © Derek Charlton)

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to everyone who follows my blog. 

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Sunday, 19 December 2010

More Redpolls - Mealy's & Arctic(?)

Don't get to excited my the blog title but it is sounding increasingly possible that an Arctic Redpoll could be in with the large flock of Mealy and Lesser Redpoll's at Rainton Meadows. I was out with a good friend of mine from north of the Tyne on Saturday morning/early afternoon. It was superb with at least 19 Mealy Redpolls, more than often outnumbering Lesser Redpoll's hands down! One bird was particularly pale and it was on deck underneath the trees but sadly it went down as a Mealy as views weren't good enough to claim Arctic.

(Click on any of the following images to enlarge)

Here are some excellent photos my my mate taken on Saturday:

Now here are some particularly pale Mealy Redpolls taken on Saturday:

Some very interesting looking birds, I just hope we can find at Arctic among them within the week. Watch this space!

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Friday, 17 December 2010

Round 2 with Mealy's

Back at Rainton Meadows today for seconds of the Mealy Redpoll, I was rewarded for my patience and I managed to pick out at least 2, well thats if I haven't made any mis ID's. Still not 100% confident with my Redpoll ID but the two birds were clearly different looking to me and slightly larger and colder looking than the many surrounding Lesser's. I didn't get as good view of the Redpolls today as I did on Wednesday when I had my first Mealy. Also saw a Brambling at the feeding station at the visitor centre and also 2 fly over Whooper Swan.

The End.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Really Mealy?

Had a good days birdwatching yesterday at Rainton Meadows. Not much around in terms of numbers of birds but a few special bird were lurking scattered about the reserve. One of the long staying Bitterns was present though as usual at present elusive, it only showed when a Grey Heron pretty much forced it out of the reedbed.

However the star bird was without a doubt a superb Mealy Redpoll, I have wanted to see one of these for a while and have been unable to do so. I had brushed up on my ID skills for the separation of Lesser and Mealy Redpoll so it wasn't to difficult, though still a challenge! Thankfully a mate of mine was present who has quite a lot of years up on me on birds and we were able to pick out 1 perhaps 2 from the large mobile flock. The bird that we got prolonged views off was superb:
- Pretty much pure white wing-bar
- Long primary projection (noted my my mate only)
- White rump
- Very grey and cold looking overall.

I however made the fatal mistake of spending about a minute taking a photo rather than studying the bird and enjoying it. So I put my mobile away and instead watched the bird so that I could satisfy in my own mind it was infact a Mealy and not a Lesser. Thankfully there were plenty of Lesser's present around it as well as Siskins, the bird stood out well. When we lost it it was very easily picked out again. But I am certainly going to be going back to try and study them further. One thing I didn't really notice was the size of the bird, they tend to be larger than Lesser's but not an absolute key ID feature. I have attached some terrible images of the Mealy, it was the best I could manage I'm afraid!
(Mealy Redpoll - Rainton Meadows)

(Mealy Redpoll - Rainton Meadows)

(Mealy Redpoll - Rainton Meadows)

What a bird and lifer number 283.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Ring details of a Great Black-backed Gull recieved

(Great black-backed Gull - right leg ringed (click image to enlarge) - 04/12/2010 - 
if you click on the image you can zoom in and see part of the ring)

As some of you may know I was out Gull watching at Rainton Meadows not Saturday just gone but the Saturday before that, I was looking for the Iceland Gull and Yellow-legged Gull but instead turned up 2 Scandinavian Herring Gulls (argentatus) and a ringed Great black-backed Gull, I must admit it was really Mark who found all them. Myself and Mark read the ring details for the Great black-backed Gull pictured above. Unfortunately we were incorrect as when I returned later on that day to look through the gulls again the bird had moved and I was able to read the full ring details. The ring read: JCS6, I text it onto Mark who then submitted the details. 

A few days ago Mark was sent an email with the birds details. So here are the results:
CR-Code Dark blue ring with white code: JCS6 LBBW(JCS6);RBM
Ringing Centre Stavanger Museum (Norway) Ring number 397742
Species Great Black-backed Gull  Larus marinus
Sex Female Age 5 cy+

28.05 2001
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'16"N 031°09'21"E
NINA - Tromsø
03.06 2002
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'16"N 031°09'21"E
NINA Tromsø
15.05 2009
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'16"N 031°09'21"E
Erikstad, Kjell Einar
Kvivesen, Elisabeth
23.05 2009
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'16"N 031°09'21"E
Erikstad, Kjell Einar
Kvivesen, Elisabeth
24.05 2009
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'16"N 031°09'21"E
Erikstad, Kjell Einar
Kvivesen, Elisabeth
30.04 2010
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'05"N 031°09'22"E
Kvivesen, Elisabeth
17.05 2010
Hornøya, Vardø, Finnmark, Norway
70°23'05"N 031°09'22"E
Helberg, Morten
Kvivesen, Elisabeth
04.12 2010
Rainton Meadows, Tyne & Wear, Great Britain
54°49'47"N 001°29'56"W
Newsome, Mark

So it turns out that our bird was a female that has only ever been reported in Norway, she is at least 5 years old, I am guessing the '+' means she is possibly older.

Don't forget to buy Surfin' Bird so it makes it to Christmas No1 click here to find out more:

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Monday, 13 December 2010

I presume you've all heard..........

about a certain music track, that is of the avian variety. No?

You haven't heard that bird is the word!!!!!

It's a race to Christmas number 1, for a long time now the X-Factor have tried to get the Christmas No1 single every year, however last year Rage Against the Machine got to Christmas No1 and this was because of a group started on Facebook, they encouraged people to buy the track so that Rage Against the Machine would get to Christmas No1. Hopefuly this year Surfin' Bird will get to Christmas No1!


Here's what the humorous track sounds like, enjoy:

This is not me saying I don't like the X-Factor or Matt because I do and I watch the show every year, however this song just simply has to get to number 1, mainly because its funny and its bird related! Plus it was on the end of the Twitchers a Very British Obsession documentary.

Click below to be taken to a page where you can go and see a list of where to song can be bought from, then read whats the "Buying Links" poster>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Hope you buy the track!

Latest Updates - 14th December 2010
RSPB Now Supporting the Campaign to get Surfin' Bird to Christmas No1!
See here:

Saturday, 11 December 2010

So who is Foghorn? – Part 1

Hopefully this blog post will be able to give you some insight into my birding life and this blog.

I started birdwatching about 5 years ago in the year 2006; my interest seemed to really take off when I was taken to Loch of the Lowes by my Grandma who lived near by the reserve at the time. It was of course the Osprey that was the star attraction of the visit. Before this event I can always remember having a interest in birds, when my Grandma moved to the Perthshire countryside I can remember looking through my Grandma’s bird book and trying to decide what buzzard species were around her house. I eventually came to the decision they were common buzzards rather than rough-legged or honey.

Since the moment when I got remotely interested on a more serious level I can remember having a few years where I bird watched fairly infrequently. However over the past 2 years or so I have become interested on a far more serious level. I joined Durham Bird Club about 1 and a half years ago and ever since then birding has pretty much been my major hobby. I think the reason for this is mainly because I started to meet like minded people and also got the chance to see some superb birds which I had never had the chance to see previously.

The name of my blog is due to a nickname assigned to me by local birdwatcher Steve Evans, Foghorn is of course known as a cartoon character that is a large chicken which is also quite loud mouthed, not sure what he’s hinting at here? Quite conveniently it also rhymes with my last name Kinghorn. Hence why I gave myself the name Foghorn Kinghorn, and so that is the origin of my blog title.

Part 2 coming soon!

Thanks to all my new followers. Didn't think I would reach 40 followers anytime soon. Thanks for the continued support guys, glad you enjoy my blog.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Friday, 10 December 2010

Local Patching

It was nice to get some local birding done at Rainton Meadows yesterday. I had planned to go down and study the gulls, however there wasn't any on the reserve! So instead I sat and waited for the Bittern that didn't show, so I wandered off and I managed 2 Snipe and flight and a Woodcock at a distance. Sadly no sign of any Owls on this visit, however the definite highlight was a Peregrine that came over the pond and had a go at the Mallards unsuccessfully, it was an adult and clearly a male as nearly as soon as he had flown in and missed the Mallards he was joined by a much larger female. They both flew off together over toward to open country, no doubt hunting together and must be a pair. Sadly the views weren't the best, mainly silhouettes but it was great to see the male and the female together so locally.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Thursday, 9 December 2010


Excellent song, only a bit of fun and not really bird related. Just funny! Bird related stuff after you've watched the video, do watch it and I am sure you will laugh.

Local birding has produced very local Long-eared Owl, Barn Owl, Woodcock, and possibly Short-eared Owl, but now I think it was just the Long-eared Owl I saw. It was sadly very dark when I saw the Short-eared Owl about a week ago. Thankfully I saw the Long-eared Owl in very low light yesterday evening and I wasn't sure if it might have been a Tawny, thankfully David Kay was down last night and saw it well enough to confirm my suspicions were right and it was a Long-eared Owl. Superb!

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Bittern at Rainton Meadows

Video of the Bittern(s) at Rainton Meadows taken on Sasturday can be seen here:


Saturday, 4 December 2010

Left Wing, Right Wing, No White Wing

Sadly the title sums up my gull spotting at Rainton Meadows DWT this afternoon. No sign of the Iceland Gull or the Yellow-legged Gull, their will be others this winter I hope. Hopefully I will also see them! It was great to see the two Bitterns together in the same scope view as well as see them in flight, out in the open, climbing in and about the reedbed, etc.

As usual it was great to catch up with Mark N, Pablo Hugelist, Ian Liddle, mILLYg, John Gardiner, Colin, Mickey, etc. That’s right; half of Durham’s birders were down at Rainton Meadows today. Also a pleasure to meet ex BB Chairman Colin Bradshaw, superb hour and half’s birding.

However what was particularly interesting were the Bitterns, at about 3:30 myself and Colin Bradshaw began to see some interesting behavior. One Bittern came out and flew over to pool 1 at Rainton Meadows. Then about 10 minutes later the other Bittern emerged from the reedbed and then walked into another section of the reedbed where it could still be seen. Then from behind it another Bittern emerged. Shortly after this one of the Bitterns chased the other and it flew over to pool 1 again, then a few minutes later the other also flew over to pool 1. No doubt they are doing this to feed on pool 1 overnight due to the fact Bitterns are quite nocturnal feeders. However what is interesting was the first time a Bittern flew off to pool 1 we are pretty certain it didn't come back. Colin suggested it might have walked back over but when I explained there was a fence there it did make me wonder if there are actually 3 Bitterns at Rainton Meadows. I would say there are only 2 Bitterns but we almost defiantly would have seen if the other bittern came back. I just couldn't see how we could have missed it coming back in; sly Bittern might just be the answer.

(click on any image to enlarge)

(Bittern - Rainton Meadows DWT - © Mark Newsome)

(2 Bitterns - Rainton Meadows DWT - © Mark Newsome)

Now to end on some gulls. Below are some interesting gull images showing a colour ringed Herring Gull, Great Black Backed Gull, and a Scandinavian Herring Gull (larus argentatus). Enjoy!
(Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Mark Newsome)

(Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Mark Newsome)
 (Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT -
© Andrew Kinghorn)

(Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Andrew Kinghorn)

(2nd bird - Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Andrew Kinghorn)

(2nd bird - Herring Gull (larus argentatus) - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Andrew Kinghorn)
(Colour ringed details: JCS6 Great Black-backed Gull - Rainton Meadows DWT - 
© Andrew Kinghorn) 
(Colour ringed Herring Gull (larus argenteus) - Rainton Meadows DWT 
- © Andrew Kinghorn)

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Lesser & Mealy Repoll ID

I very helpful, easy to understand, and concise paper has been put together on how to separate Lesser and Mealy Redpoll.

Plenty of images used throughout of typical individuals as well as the trickier birds.

The paper is published by Lee Evans and can be found here:

Here is a list of other Repoll literature which deals with the separation of Lesser and Mealy Redpoll: - Looks good, haven't read it yet as of updating this post. - For thoose who subscrbe to BirdGuides.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

I like Tawny Pipit, but I also like Meadow Pipit..............

but which is better?

See video:

Fantastic humor for us birders.

Until next time, Foghorn out!

Monday, 29 November 2010

Around the…..Patch? I think that’s what it’s called anyway

Contrary to what some of my followers might think I was once a very keen local patcher, in fact I rarely did any other birding than that of birding on my local patch. So on Saturday I decided I would have a walk around my local area to count the number of birds again like I did last week. Here are the results:

- 3 Goldfinch
- 20 Starling
-Great-black Backed Gull
-Herring Gull
- 20c Common Gull
- 1 Mediterranean Gull (Pub in Lumley)
- 20c Woodpigeon
- 40+ Redwing
- 2 Cormorant
- 40 Greylag Geese
- 15c Bullfinch
- 6 Long-tailed Tit
- 5+ Great Tit
- 3c Song Thrush
- 1 Mistle Thrush
- 1 Coal Tit
- 1 Wren
- 10c Magpie
- 5+ Blue Tit
- 3 Goldeneye
- 30c Siskin
- 15 Pheasant
- 5+ Robin
- Jay 1
- 1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
- 3+ Collared Dove
- 2+ Greenfinch
- 2+ Tree Sparrow

However the pick of the bunch were 13 Waxwings which I found in my own village toward the end of the walk. The birds showed well and in the snow, a dream fulfilled! I had always wanted to see Waxwings in the snow. They relocated to a location closer to home about 10 minutes later where they remained for an hour or so, allowing for David Kay a friend and DBC member from the village to connect with the birds and get some images. The birds showed extremely well and they are defiantly one of my favourite birds in the world.

On Sunday Davy rang me up to say that the birds were still there but they had grown from just 13 to about 140! I went to see them and it was superb to see such as large flock. What fantastic birds.

(Click on any of the images to enlarge them)

(Some of the Saturday flock - © David Kay)

(Some of the Saturday flock - © David Kay)

(Waxwing - © David Kay)

(Some of the Sunday flock - © David Kay )
Until next time, Foghorn out!