Thursday, September 22, 2011

Not Again?

Thursday proved another windy morning for Another Bird Blog, so time to brave the elements and then perhaps find a sheltered spot, watch and wait, and hope a bird or two turns up. By midday there wasn’t a lot in the old notebook, but I finally got a recognisable shot of the Lane Ends/Fluke Hall distant Marsh Harrier before it departs the scene.

A fleeting trip to Knott End proved, dare I say, as unexciting as the old village itself, with just several Redshank and 2 Eider at the river with 10 alba wagtails flitting across the golf club fairway. Fluke Hall was more inspiring with 60+ Lapwing, 35 Linnets, 5 Greenfinch, 1 Little Egret and 6 Meadow Pipit on the shore, although the wood was eerily quiet with no sign of autumn Chaffinches yet.

Looking back inland from the sea wall I spotted 2 Buzzards circling, seeking early thermals, and then out on the marsh a gang of Carrion Crows squabbling with a Raven. The Raven took the hint and flew further out on the marsh. Without warning the Marsh Harrier of recent weeks reappeared from north of the wood, and as it does so often flew quickly to the outermost part of the salt marsh then dropped into the long grasses and out of sight. So, more fleeting, distant views but from the photographs it certainly looks like the same bird of recent weeks. That’s Heysham Power Station in the background, not as near as the telephoto lens makes it appear, 18 miles by road but a lot less for a migrant bird taking the shorter Morecambe Bay crossing north or south.

Marsh Harrier

Marsh Harrier

By this time the Buzzards had flown out almost as far as the harrier, around to Lane Ends and then back towards Fluke Hall, but all the time gaining height as the morning warmed up. A Peregrine showed up by now, doing the same circuit as the Buzzards, but a lot quicker. And then along came a Kestrel, sticking to searching the sea wall and the wildfowler’s pools where 10 or so late Swallows hawked around.


Little Egret

From the stile at Pilling Water I noted 7 Little Egrets, a calling, distant Greenshank somewhere beyond the 180+ Pink-footed Geese and 40 Greylag. There were 2 big Wheatears on the shore, not seeking insects amongst the usual rocks, but searching for more earthly stuff in the soft marsh grass, and overhead a small but steady trickle of 30 or more Skylarks. I counted the Skylarks heading over as I crouched on the shore where about 20 grounded Meadow Pipits had gathered, so I spent a short while getting more pictures, all the time hoping I’d get to ring a few more of the little beauties soon.

Meadow Pipit

Meadow Pipit

Meadow Pipit


Kay L. Davies said...

Oh, it has happened again. I have a new love: the Meadow Pipit! What a charming bird, Phil.
— K

Kay, Alberta, Canada
An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

Christian said...

Lovely Meadow Pipit shots Phil. What an underrated little bird.

grammie g said...

Hey Phil...I thought when I saw that Not knew I was able to do commenting again, and you was hoping I had forgotten about you.. haha!! No chance...I need a heckler in my life!!
Well things don't seem to be coming together for you huh...that's a shame you do such a great work keeping track of those winged friends of our by putting those rings on them!!
I like that Meadow knows just how to pose for a good shot ; }
Better luck tomorrow my friend!!


Paco Sales said...

Unas tres preciosas tomas del prado pipit, un día de viento que al final tiene su recompensa, un abrazo amigo Phil

Stu said...

Haven't seen Heysham Power Station for a fair while.............

Nice Pipit shots Phil.

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