Monday, October 12, 2009

Reddy for Action

Monday mornings are babysitting. So there I was about 0730, not long after first decent birding light nowadays, waiting outside the door for the latecomers whilst simultaneously watching and looking skywards just in case. I half expected Redwings as there have been reports from the Pennines for a few days with odd ones reaching the coast.

Within a few minutes I saw a loose flock of birds coming from a westerly direction of Staynall and the Wyre. I thought they might be Redwings because they always fly a little looser, a bit further apart than Starlings of the similar size; the old “jizz” recognition still works. The flock got closer with the familiar calls overhead so I started counting with 80/90 in that first flock as they went over in a north-easterly direction, disappearing over Stalmine village. Within the next hour and a half I counted further flocks and small groups all going in the same direction towards the Pennines, reaching a grand total of 250+. Looking at other blogs and websites it seems that this may have been a very localised occurrence.

Redwing photo courtesy of Andreas Trepte

Whilst all this Redwing activity was going on, the usual early morning rush of bird activity even thrushes, Goldfinch and Chaffinch persuaded me to put up a garden net. All in the course of educating Olivia about birds you understand.

The first bird I caught was a Song Thrush, a species that I don’t necessarily see in my garden for months at a time so scarce are they. It was a pretty immaculate specimen, in peak looks and condition as fresh migrant thrushes often are.

I also caught a couple of Blackbirds, a protesting Starling, Blue and Great Tit together with 3 Coal Tit.

Oh, the babysitting went fine and Olivia wants to be a birder but she’s not quite four at the moment.

A good week of weather is forecast, fingers crossed that the rest of October is just the best ever.

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