Thursday, March 10, 2016

Trickle Time

There were small numbers of Siskins, Lesser Redpolls and Goldfinches on the move north this week. It was on Monday at Oakenclough that Andy caught handfuls of all three species. 

We both returned today hoping to witness further evidence of spring migration and catch more of our target species for the site. The forecast wind speed of 5mph was some way off the mark as we arrived to see swaying tree tops and ripples across the surface of the nearby reservoir caused by a 15mph chilly northerly breeze. Fortunately the wind dropped somewhat, the sun came out and we managed to catch 15 birds in a slow trickle of activity but during a morning when the temperature never rose above 8°C. 

We didn’t catch a single Goldfinch today and we both scratched our heads trying to remember the last time Goldfinch failed to appear on a field sheet from this site. Coal Tits are also regular here, mainly as recaptures from previous ringing sessions so we were surprised to catch three new ones today in our total of just 15 - 4 Lesser Redpoll, 2 Siskin, 2 Chaffinch, 3 Blue Tit, 3 Coal Tit and 1 Dunnock. 

Coal Tit

The four Lesser Repolls consisted of three new ones and a recapture from Monday. Both Siskins were new birds and both adult males. 

Lesser Redpoll

 Lesser Redpoll



We saw a number of raptors this morning with circling and calling Buzzards much in evidence and a count of between four and eight individuals, all of them harried by crows or gulls in the course of their soaring. We also saw at least two Sparrowhawks plus one or more Peregrine. On Monday Andy had also clocked up a ringtail Hen Harrier over nearby farmland. 

Carrion Crows and Buzzard

Other birds today - 4 Mistle Thrush, 2 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Pied Wagtail, 8+ Oystercatcher, 12+ Curlew and the rather unusual sight of a Dipper feeding alongside the water’s edge of the nearby reservoir.

The normal habitat of the dipper is fast flowing streams, and although there are some nearby, to see a dipper along the reservoir’s margins made us look twice.

White-throated Dipper - R. Knight. East Sussex, UK [CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons)

More birds next time from Another Bird Blog. Log in soon.

Linking today to Anni's Blog and Eileen's Saturday.


David Gascoigne said...

You gotta move back to Ontario. It was 19° here yesterday. Tons of migrants - Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles, American Robins, Killdeer...and so on. Spring has truly sprung!

eileeninmd said...

Hello, the Redpoll and Siskins are a couple of my favorites. The Dipper is a beauty and more colorful than our Dipper seen here. I am looking forward to the Spring migration, bring it on. Happy Birding.

Breathtaking said...

Hello Phil!:) Great flight shot of the buzzard and crows. That must have been quite something to see the smaller gulls and crows harrassing the buzzards.Love all your closeup shots, and the sweet dipper image.

Jo said...

Hi Phil, every image a masterpiece. I love reading through your blog and sharing in your birding passion. Have a great day. Jo

Russell Jenkins said...

Phil, I have to say the Tit, siskin and redpoll look mighty cute. Isn't it remarkable they get about in the wild?

Lowcarb team member said...

It's the wind chill factor I am not keen on ... funny I can never remember talking of wind chill factor when I was a child!!! I just went out and didn't even think about it ... Oh, well!

Some lovely images here, the colouring on the 'Lesser Redpole' and 'Siskin' just beautiful. Nature never ceases to amaze me, the colours it can bring into our lives.

Happy Friday
Happy Weekend too.

All the best Jan

jandi said...

Wonderful images!

Prunella Pepperpot said...

Loving your head captures. Such sweet little birds.
Have a lovely weekend :)

eileeninmd said...

Hello Phil, I just wanted to stop back and say thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Great birds and photos. Have a happy weekend!

Anni said...

That dipper never ceases to amaze me....all dressed up in it's evening apparel [tuxedo].

The Redpoll...a pretty species.

Too bad the wind had to kick up overnight and not be as predicted for you two. Tho, I think that's still a good number to work with for the day...especially when it's chilly!!

Here in Texas we've had flooding rains. Today was the first day I actually remained dry walking around birding. I was entertained all morning by a white eyed vireo. Such a beautiful song.

Thank you, Phil, for sharing these wonderful captures with us at I'd Rather B Birdin'! All of us birders are so appreciative!!

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

The Siskin sure has some pretty color! We have pine siskins here in Florida but they are duller. Great photos as always!

Tony McGurk said...

All those little birds just look so sweet. I discovered recently that what I've always thought were Crows are actually called Forest Ravens which are native to Tasmania & a few southern areas of the Australian mainland. Apparently Crows are non-existent in Tasmania so I've spent 55 years believing those big black birds were Crows.

sandyland said...

none of them are here in Fl always an education

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

White-throated Dipper is one classy bird!

Margaret Adamson said...

The Dipper, siskins and Lesser Redpoll are smashing shots. phil.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Dippers are so hard to get a picture of. Fun to watch. The coal tits have to be closely related to our chickadees. (Have I asked you about that before? Probably. I'm getting older and more forgetful by the moment). A great day birding for you as usual.

Stewart M said...

Clearly the Dipper was on a day out! Surprising find.

Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

Mary Cromer said...

All are wonderful shares Phil, but the White-throated Dipper gave me great pause...pause to explain what a handsome/beautiful bird. I love the colours. What a great way to end your post. Have a wonderful week doing what you love~

Fun60 said...

Great photo of the buzzard and the crows.

Photo Cache said...

Thank you for sharing your bird shots with us. I love birds, but never gotten into birding.

Worth a Thousand Words

carol l mckenna said...

All wonderful bird photographs ~ Favorites are the macro head shots! Beautiful!

Happy Week to you ~ ^_^

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