Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The King Is Back

A Kingfisher at Conder Green was the highlight of a very quiet morning, the blue and green flash narrowly beating yet another Barn Owl into second place. 

Looking for early morning owls dictates a slow drive along the customary routes, one eye on the road the other eye looking left and right for a ghostly apparition gliding across summery fields and ditches. Luckily at 5am there’s not much rush hour traffic to delay and annoy. No luck though, with nary a Barn Owl glimpsed between home and Conder Green, just a single Kestrel at Head Dyke and then a Tawny Owl in the trees at Crimbles. 

At Conder Green there was a good count of Redshank with 165+ birds in the creek, a number which in addition to migrants from elsewhere included a quartet of one day old chicks brooded by the female and watched over by a very vocal male. Two Common Sandpipers perhaps signifies the impending return of more. 

Common Sandpiper


A lazy and somewhat incomplete count produced the anticipated result of 5 Little Egret and 2 Grey Heron, 15 Oystercatcher, the 2 drake Wigeon, 12 Tufted Duck. 

Kingfishers usually turn up here at the coast in July and August, probably from their breeding haunts just inland on the River Conder and Lancaster Canal, the Kingfishers then wintering hereabouts. So although one might be expected here soon, sighting one at the pool this June morning was a both pleasant and welcome surprise. The royal fisherman didn’t stay long but whizzed across the pool towards the unseen canal, the waterway which finishes half a mile away at Glasson Dock. 


A walk along the old railway towards Glasson manufactured another handful each of Redshank, Curlew, Lapwing and yet more Little Egrets, another four; what an amazing success story the Little Egret is in reconstructing its population in the UK. 

Whitethroats were conspicuous this morning, at least 8 of them along the path, juveniles and adults, family parties keeping in visible and audible contact. There was also a Blackcap in song at the car park. 



Two Sedge Warblers along the same path, and at the tiny roadside reedbed adjacent the mini-roundabout, a still loudly singing Reed Warbler. Heading back home via Jeremy Lane at 0930 a commotion from field-feeding Starlings made me look right, just in time to see a Barn Owl carrying prey fly across the road ahead of me but the owl heading out of sight towards buildings I do not know. 

Back home while viewing the entrants for this year’s village scarecrow competition with our two granddaughters, we found a crow taking a drink plus the other “king”, King Elvis. 


 Scary Elvis

Stay tuned to Another Bird Blog. It looks as though we may get one more day from this fine spell of weather before the heavens open.

Linking today to Stewart's World Bird Wednesday  and Theresa's Thursday Fences


Margaret Adamson said...

HI Phil I always knew Elvis was alive!!! Great bird shots an it was wonderful to have seen a Kingfisher and to photograph it.

Gunilla Bäck said...

The crow bar is ute, but Elvis is scary. Wonderful photos of the birds as usual.

Janice Adcock said...

You post gave me a big smile! Great shots of birds and scarecrows.

David Gascoigne said...

I never thought I would read that a Kingfisher would trump a Barn Owl. And you had Tawny Owl too! Any two owl day is a Red Letter Day for me. Great scarecrow by the way.

eileeninmd said...

The Crow Bra and Elvis are just too funny! Love all the great birds, the Kingfisher is one of my favorites. And the Redshank is a beauty! Happy Birding!

Bob Bushell said...

Oh yes, beautiful images of the birds, and the Elvis look a like.

Carole M. said...

well I'm lovin' the Kingfisher over the King of Rock today

Susan said...

A very enjoyable post Phil. Love the Kingfisher especially.
Aha... knew Elvis was still in the building (or garden)!!
Cheers :D)

Karen said...

Great captures as always Phil! The kingfisher is awesome.
As for the scarecrows, that Elvis would keep anything away!

Russell Jenkins said...

Super capture of the kingfisher and I like the look of the black cap. A new one for me. The white throat is nice too, almost wren-esk.

The Alpine Blogger said...

Have you seen any cuckoos this year?

Dział Przyrody MŚO said...

Wonderful pictures, Phil!
Such Crow bar I'd love to visit :-)


165 plus? In one stop?!! You're livin' right. Awesome.

Love the redshank how it posed for you so perfectly and the kingfisher is so colorful!!

The scarecrows are amazing....but Elvis?!! He is a bit scary.

Mary Cromer said...

Not sure about those scarecrows...ha ha, but so happy to see the Kingfisher back...and how beautiful as always! Had to smile at how you described looking for the Owl...we birders, how on earth we drive, safely, of course... and find what we are looking for, then park the car, safely of course and then hopefully capture a photo, or 2...whew, it is a miracle!

Modesto Viegas said...

Very good post!!!

Adam Jones said...

Really nice Sandpiper and the characteristic Redshank shot. Great stuff.

Marie said...

Wonderful bird sightings. You may have had a "low" day, but I would have been overwhelmed with joy! :-) Love that kingfisher! Your photos are beautiful. And "Crow Bar"....too cute!:-)

TexWisGirl said...

your bird shots are just so great! love the black cap, the redshank on the post,the kingfisher and the chaffinch in your header!

loved the 'crow bar' - how creative!

thanks for linking, phil!

bj said...

Those bird photos are really good.

Felicia said...

beautiful bird images. I really like the kingfisher.

Ida said...

Neat post. I loved the Kingfisher and the Red Shank.
Got a good chuckle out of the "Crow Bar" and Elvis.

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