Friday, November 22, 2013

Friday Flight

I was on my way north but decided to stop off at Lane Ends when I saw lots of Pink-footed Geese coming off the marsh from their night time roost and dropping for breakfast in the nearest field. It was the closest field but also a large one, the wary geese sticking close to the furthest fence from the road where noone would trouble them. The geese didn’t so much as drop in but glide down, treating me to a superb display of synchronised landing into the wind, wings bowed at the appropriate angle with tail and feet applying the brakes for a perfect landing. 

 Pink-footed Geese

 Pink-footed Goose

Pink-footed Goose

Geese were constantly arriving and leaving in small groups, staying to feed or heading off inland for pastures new. In all I estimated 1800 birds on the field before the first person on foot along the lane sent the geese off in noisy flight. Click on xeno-canto to hear the geese panicking off.
At Conder Green two Spotted Redshank still explored the channel, while on the pool Little Grebe numbers have fallen to just 3, Wigeon increased to 12 and Tufted Duck to 3. I struggled to find much else and even the dependable Teal numbers have declined to 120+.

It was an icy cold morning but at Glasson I found an angler, head in his chest and fast asleep in a chair at the side of the dock. Maybe he’d been there all night as anglers often do, but there didn’t seem to be a layer of frost so I left him in his slumber and counted the wildfowl, many of them sleeping head down too - 80+ Tufted Duck, 42 Coot, 1 Scaup and 1 Pochard.


I hope a blog reader was a winner of the recent Princeton University Press competition for a signed copy of The Crossley ID Guide: Britain & Ireland. See who won here at Another Bird Blog .

I decided to head back to Lane Ends to check out the stubble field - still consistent with 90+ Black-tailed Godwit, 220 Lapwing, 200 Jackdaws, 40 Carrion Crow, 25 Redshank, 3 Snipe, 8 Curlew, 2 Golden Plover, 70+ Skylark and then 2 Reed Buntings in the spent maize.

Carrion Crows chased a Buzzard out of the plantation at Pilling Water and as I walked back to Fluke the crows had found a Peregrine to chase as well; they don’t miss much those crows.

Buzzard


At Fluke itself, a Jay in the trees and several Tree Sparrows along the hedgerow.

There's more soon from Another Bird Blog, stay tuned. In the meantime I'm linking to Camera Critters and I'd Rather Be Birding.

16 comments:

Chris Rohrer said...

Very interesting birds. I really would love to find that Pink-footed Goose:) My favorite times are around water.....there is nothing more calming than looking for birds with cool to cold breeze.

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful shots of the geese, Phil! Sound like you had another great outing of counting the birds. Happy birding and have a great weekend!

The happy wanderer. said...

How wonderful to watch that many Geese coming in to land and feed. We saw only a few in Iceland and Svalbard.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Nice seeing the Scaup in your bird guide, wonderul images in those books! Lots of great attention to detail.
I really enjoyed seeing the Pink Footed Geese images...coming in for a landing...now that is what I wish that I could do...take off and fly and give me a really easy landing ;) Happy weekend Phil~

Rajesh said...

Wonderful shots of birds in the flight.

Anni said...

Once again, I must sound like a broken record when I leave a comment for you...but your blog is ALWAYS awesome. And per usual...informative and to me, a novice birder...very educational. Great photos. Love the pink footed geese.

Congratulations to Tom, Lorraine, Natalie, Charlotte and Mark.

Margaret Adamson said...

Hi Phil. Another great outing and I loved the Geese.

HansHB said...

Lovely photos, so much interesting to see!

Gunilla Bäck said...

Beautiful flight photos. Sounds like you had a great day.

Russell Jenkins said...

That's great numbers for the geese, Phil and you're right about the crows. It'd be good if we could question them when we went out. I'm sure we'd hear about more than we were aware of.

Choy Wai Mun said...

Love the geese images, Phil. Yes, crows are always up to no good even here in Malaysia.

Stewart M said...

I do come from a land of parrots!

Nice to see soe geese though!

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

Karen said...

Cool captures Phil! I like their pink feet!

Gary Phillips said...

Great series!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River.

Christian Weiß said...

Great photos and interesting birds.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

It is always a wonder to me the way geese and swans land and fly up in perfect sync! And those pink footed ones are so pretty! Again, in this post and the one above I am in awe of the number of wonderful birds you get.

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