Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Birding And A Roving Linnet

It was birding only this morning with bright and breezy conditions on Rawcliffe Moss providing good visibility and a healthy selection of birds to keep me occupied for a few hours. I’d gone to fill the feeders and check what might be knocking about with a view to a ringing session tomorrow if the wind drops as promised.

As strange as it may seem scarce Yellowhammers outnumbered common Goldfinch this morning, with 10/12 of the former and just 8 or 10 Goldfinches, the only problem being that the buntings are much harder to observe, and certainly to catch than the Goldfinch. I topped up the Niger feeders and then raided the bottom of the pheasant feeders for a little more wheat for the Yellowhammers whilst wondering where all the Goldfinches have got to.

Yellowhammer

Pheasant

The plantation proved quiet, a couple of Blackbirds, 2 Song Thrush, 1 Jay, 3+ overflying Siskin, several Chaffinch and then 3 Buzzards settling their differences over the tall conifers. The wintering Hen Harrier showed again today as it flew over the plantation and then out towards Pilling Moss, just a brief sighting of a species which should by now be heading for the hills. Let’s hope it can stay safe from persecution up there after surviving the winter here. The fields produced 125 returning-north Curlew and then on a tiny flash of water, 14 Snipe and a single Meadow Pipit.

At the other end of the farm I found 2 Grey Partridge, 30+ Tree Sparrows, 2 more Buzzards, a pair of Kestrel and a singing Pied Wagtail. I made a mental note of a Mistle Thrush inspecting a suitable nest site, one to check in a week or two.

Kestrel

Pied Wagtail

Last week on 14th March I caught a ringed Linnet A376420 which turned out to have been ringed across the Irish Sea at Point of Ayre, Isle of Man on 22 October 2011. The Linnet was one of a wintering flock of 200/400 Linnets and when recaptured here on the moss was also part of a Linnet flock of 100-140 birds. The bird’s origins and its whereabouts after Out Rawcliffe remain something of a mystery, but it could be an upland bird seeking out a wintering maritime climate.

Linnet Y376420 - Isle of Man to Rawcliffe Moss

Linnet

15 comments:

El rincón de Ceditas said...

Gracias por dejarnos observar todas esas hermosas aves. Graciassssss y un abrazo desde Madrid

Mary Howell Cromer said...

The Linnet is wonderful, the Pheasant is incredible, the Kestrel is awesome and that Pied Wagtail, oh my, what a beauty. It sounds like things are beginning to pick up slowly yet surely Phil. I saw a bit of the Queen's Jubilation celebration bright and early this morning from the BBC. I have always enjoyed that sort of thing. Have a splendid evening~

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful day, Phil. I love all the birds, the pheasant and the wagtail are my favorites. Beautiful photos.

Choy Wai Mun said...

A great set of images especially the pheasant.

heyBJK said...

That pheasant is gorgeous!

Tatjana Parkacheva said...

Beautiful photographs.

Regards and best wishes

joo said...

I love them all! Superb post!

Crafty Gardener said...

Lovely bird photos, some of which we don't see in my part of Canada.

Andrew said...

Wonderful images of your beautiful birds..

Chris said...

Well I'm starting to envy a lot of people, cause Iðve not been able to bird for a month and a half because of the weather!!! You got nice shots and beautiful pictures! Hope we will get back our wagtail soon ;-)

Larry said...

It looks like a nice birding day Phil! Beautiful photos of the birds you saw, as usual. It's interesting to discover where birds have been isn't it? You are so fortunate to be able to band these little friends and help bird science as you do.

Gary said...

Great series Phil!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Russell said...

Wonderful collection of photos, Phil. Hard to choose a favourite though the pheasant and wagtail linger in my mind. The kes is a super shot too! You have me worried about the welfare of the harrier though.

Stewart M said...

Hi there - interesting post - re-traps are always exciting. However, most of our retraps are birds we have banded ourselves.

Did take a bird from NZ out of a net once mind you!

Cheers - Stewart M - Australia

Springman said...

Banding is certainly a fascinating project. The treks these birds take would make Magellan jealous!

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