Thursday, December 27, 2012

Back To Normal?

Loading my gear into the car in the pitch black there seemed to be a lot of noise from the local Blackbirds. When I looked around to see the cause of the commotion a Tawny Owl in silhouette from the street lights sat atop a neighbour’s chimney pot. It was too dark to take a picture even and as I watched it the owl turned and flew back towards a local copse where it spends the daylight hours out of sight. 

There was a respite from the seasonal celebrations and even a break from the rain this morning, allowing time enough for a visit to Out Rawcliffe and a spot of ringing combined with a little birding. Driving through the lanes the Little Owl was sat up in the by now half-light; and for students of photography, the picture was taken with ISO3200. 

Little Owl

Having missed topping up the bird’s food for a day or two due to the weather and the intervention of Christmas I didn’t expect a huge number of birds. In fact it turned out OK with a catch of 17 new ones - 5 Chaffinch, 5 Goldfinch, 4 Reed Bunting, 1 Brambling, 1 Blackbird, and 1 Great Tit. 

Firstly, and because they are a rather special and sought after species, there’s a picture of today’s Brambling, another first year male. In the locality today were 4+ Brambling and 50+ Chaffinch. 

Brambling - 1st year male

I never tire of catching Reed Buntings, always so variable and interesting, never two the same. Today I counted 15+ Reed Bunting, a number similar to many recent occasions, but there must be a constant turnover of the species because recaptures are rare and I catch new ones on each visit. 

Reed Bunting

Reed Bunting

Reed Bunting

More than 40 Goldfinches about today, all with rather mucky bills but not too surprising as all their natural food must be permanently sodden with the constant rain.

Goldfinch - female

Other bits and bobs today: 6000+ Wood Pigeon and 5500 Pink-footed Goose in nearby woods and fields respectively, 1 Buzzard, 1 Kestrel and 1 Mistle Thrush, the thrush in full song from a nearby wood. On the way home and near the river I clocked up two more Kestrels, and then in Hambleton village a roving Jay, a couple of sightings which finished off an agreeable morning. 

Log in soon and to see if Another Bird Blog can survive the rest of the festivities and then welcome in the New Year with good birding style.

This week we are linking to Anni who just like me would rather be birding at any time.

24 comments:

DeniseinVA said...

I would be jumping up and down with excitement if I saw that Tawny Owl (always get in touch with my inner child when I see something so very rarely). Happy New Year! Thank you for all the wonderful posts and photos, which have always made for a very enjoyable visit.

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

Beautiful details you captured on these delightful birds. You really have a special relationship with your camera and the birds.

Findlay Wilde said...

Brilliant photos. I used them to test myself and my brother on. From Findlay

Ana Mínguez Corella said...

Great pictures and beautiful litte owl.. Cheers!!!..

grammie g said...

Hey Phil...I want you to know that my Christmas present hasn't arrived yet..when did you send it...you should have gotten mine by now..have you ?? ; ) LOL!!
Heck you didn't even come over to wish me a Merry Christmas..but then again I don't think I send you wishes either ; )
There is no such thing as normal..so you can't be back to...but it looks like you are doing what you do best.. practicing your counting...: ) I try to imagine that many pink footed geese in one place ..it is staggering!!
I agree with you the Reed Bunting is a lovely bird, and that Owl wow I like that one !! Someday I am going to see one setting so I can get a picture!!
I will be watching for my package!
Your normal friend haha!!
Grace

Kay L. Davies said...

Oh, I can't even pick a favourite today, Phil, although you do seem to have a special relationship with the Little Owl.
K

Russell Jenkins said...

iso 3200 and what a stunningly cute owl portrait. Love it! ...And those Reed Bunting pictures are wonderful. Rain forecast for the next three days here but will have to go out birding.

Island Rambles Blog said...

Oh my those are some incredible crisp close ups ...like the goldfinch and that owl...cheers.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

The Brambling and Reed Bunting images are really so pretty, their colurations so rich...great looking birds!
Happy New Year to you and yours Phil and happy weekend~

Stuart Price said...

Wow, 6000 Woodpigeon............

Happy New Year Phil...........

TexWisGirl said...

the reed buntings are just SO beautiful! i never tire of seeing them!

Misty DawnS said...

You always have such beautiful bird photos!

Kerry said...

Goodness me you got some magnificent shots

eileeninmd said...

You did great with the Owl shot, considering the lighting. The owls will always be one of my favorites. But, You do have a nice collection of birds and shots. I wish you all the best in 2013! Happy New Years, Phil!

Shirley said...

Oh! I would love to be in the moment with a Tawny Owl..would make my day for sure..Beautiful photo's..Happy New Year!

Eugenia Robinson said...

Your shot of the female goldfinch has to be my favorite of the series you posted today. It is a stunning shot in its beauty.Your are so good at shooting birds. You definitely have that magic touch. You bring them alive for us who do not see them in our areas by your beautiful photography. genie

Ken Schneider said...

That Little Owl photo is just splendid!

Gary said...

Great series, and love that owl!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Gary Jones said...

A lovely shot of the Little Owl at ISO 3200!
A Happy New Year to you.

Marie said...

Just gorgeous photos! My daughter loved the owl best of all :-)

Visiting via Camera Critter :-)

bonkersinbarnhart.com

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

All such lovely birds -- the little owl is wonderful. Happy New Year and I do look forward to seeing more of your wonders.

Anni said...

So neat to read that you had a chance to actually see the owl in daylight and photograph it. I also love the markings on the Brambling. {I agree with Gail Dixon's comment}

Thanks for lending and sharing your link this week at the Bird D'Pot!! And, have a happy New Year!

Pia said...

Hi Phil!
Great shots as ever, but that you got the chance to do a photo of the owl is really the best!
Happy New Year!
Pia

Jackie said...

Oh my I am in trouble even attempting to join in this group. These birds and these shots are incredible!!

I love them all and I remember you from other photo memes when I had my other blog!! You always have wonderful shots!

Happy New year to you and yours!!:-)

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