Wednesday, January 19, 2011

At The End Of The Day

I had three birds to kill with one stone this morning, a swim followed by a sauna session with the other Saga louts – a chance to put the world to rights, the Post Office for some cash, and then finish off with an overdue haircut. But I forgot Roger’s closed on a Wednesday, so the long hair poking out from the bulging baseball cap will have to wait for another day. It’s an ill wind etc., so the time I saved allowed a spot of leisurely birding down Pilling way.

There’s not much of a report from Lane Ends, on the marsh 28 swans in the distant channel seemed to be all Whoopers, an equally far away Dark-bellied Brent Goose, 2500 Pink-footed Geese and 2 Little Egret. A Raven seen off by the other corvids enlivened things somewhat, as did a Peregrine taking to the air down towards Cockerham with yet more corvid attention. Once again the pools held 4 Goldeneye, 2 males and 2 females, a pair on each pool. Wednesday is Hi-fly shoot so I didn’t venture to the boundary of their shoot at Pilling Water, but I could hear the shots going off, and the associated noise and human activity was the reason for the long-range geese, wildfowl and waders.

Dark-bellied Brent Goose – courtesy USFWS

I motored to Conder and then Glasson Dock. The pool at Conder was totally deserted save for 18 distant Wigeon, outnumbering even the 6 Mallards. The creek itself was also quiet with single Redshank and Curlew but 30 or so Teal.

It was a nice afternoon, sunny, almost spring like, so I decided to mooch around sleepy Glasson Dock and maybe get a picture or two. I walked the dock, the basin and the canal and on the water came up with 8 Goldeneye, 28 Tufted Duck, 1 Cormorant, 48 Coot and 4 Mute Swan. The canal side proved a little more varietal but not numerous as the hawthorns and scattered trees of the church grounds yielded 1 Pied Wagtail, 18 Goldfinch, 1 Mistle Thrush, 2 Redwing, 3 Tree Sparrow and 3 Fieldfare.

Glasson Dock


Tufted Duck

It had been a quiet, uneventful couple of hours with just a few photographs of disinterested Tufted Ducks and slumbering Goldeneyes, and as I motored back towards Pilling I was ready to call it a day. Until that is a winter afternoon Barn Owl appeared near Crimbles, floating over the road and off into the fields to save the day in the last half an hour of daylight.

Barn Owl

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