Wednesday, 8 November 2017

THE WINTER THRUSHES ARE BACK

The Redwing and Fieldfare our two winter Thrushes are back, I managed to grab a couple of pic's of them today feeding up on the berry trees.


redwing


fieldfare
They were very skittish and I had to wait very patiently in the freezing cold for about an hour (arrrhhh) to grab these couple of images.

Also managed to grab a pic of this female Kestrel sat on a lampost on the look out for it's breakfast.


female kestrel

Nice to see our winter thrushes back on the farm and I hope to grab some better images of them over the next couple of months.

Monday, 30 October 2017

LONG TAILS

Had a small flock of long tailed tits come into the garden today. They're not frequent visitors to my patch but were a welcome addition to the usual "garden birds".


long tailed tit



Also caught this Dunnock singing in the Autumn sunshine.


dunnock
A couple of days ago I photographed this Buzzard on one of the telegraph poles also managed a pic as it took off.


buzzard on the look out

take off
Great news about the Rock Thrush up at Pwll Ddu Quarry near Blaenavon.


rock thrush
It's just a few miles from my home and although I'd have loved to have seen it I don't really do the twitching thing unless it's at a site at my local patch but well done to those who have seen it lets hope the bird survives and manages to get back to Africa. (image taken from birdguides).

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

WILD DUCK CHASE

A text arrived this afternoon saying that there were a pair of Goldeneye's up on Cwmtillery Lakes. I haven't seen a Goldeneye for a good many years so up there I raced camera and binoculars at the ready to twitch these new arrivals which would have been at least as far as I am aware a firsts for the lake. I could have then shared this wonderful news with the birders of Gwent.

oh dear!
And here they are, well this is one of them a Tufted Duck there wasn't even a pair two females that must have arrived at the lake this morning.

the second female tufty
I suppose they do have yellow eyes so I can see how the mistake was made, but I think an I.D guide for Christmas is a must for you Cwmtillery Lake rarity finders, mmmmm!!!!!!

There was a little bit of compensation as I watched this Dipper feeding on one of the small tributary's that run into the lake.

dipper
 I suppose at least it got me out of the house for an hour and a tufted duck is not a common bird on the lake, they must be birds passing through on migration, oh! but I would have loved to have seen them Golden-eyes.

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

FEEDING STATION

Set up my feeding station with a couple more perches hoping that the birds will kindly line up to have their picture taken.


my bird feeding station
I've been lucky enough so far to have had 35 different species visit my feeders, I also should imagine I've missed the odd rare visitor. 
Although birds will come into a feeding station all year round I find that the busiest times are early spring when the birds a trying to get into peak condition ready for breeding and on freezing days in winter when food is scarce.
Here's some of the more commoner birds that frequent my feeders.


goldfinch

wren

nuthatch

dunnock

female chaffinch

great tit
male chaffinch



It's set up now so lets see what the autumn and winter brings in, something rare or unusual I hope (fingers crossed).

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

A CREEPING " familiaris "

Whilst watching and taking some pic's of the birds visiting my feeders, this Treecreeper came onto the trunk of a tree at the top end of my rather rough looking wildlife garden. It stayed for a while making it's way up the trunk looking for it's insect food and then dropping back down again to start all over again.

treecreeper


A very pleasant surprise and a new tick for my garden list.

Sunday, 3 September 2017

A BOX FOR KES

This female Kestrel turned up this morning which was nice to see, the box next to her was set up by Stephen Carter and myself hoping that we could entice a Kestrel, Jackdaw, Stock Dove or any other hole nester to hopefully give it a go. No luck so far I'm afraid, and the box has taken such a battering off the elements over the last couple of years it might now be uninhabitable.


kestrel with our beaten up box



Other things of note this week were this Chiffchaff, which never comes up this high so must be on the move.


chiffchaff



Also there's still juvenile Stonechat about I think they've had a good year.


juvi stonechat


The swallows are gathering they'll be fattening up before they set off for Africa.


swallows
Most birders now are looking forward to the autumn migration which could blow a surprise or two our way, lets hope so.

Friday, 1 September 2017

THE BARREN LANDS

Went over to Llandegfedd Reservoir today the water levels are that low it looks more like the Gobi desert over there than a reservoir. The birds are so far out I think you'll be needing one of them NASA space telescopes to identify anything on the waters edge.






There were some birds there in the distance.

canada geese and cormorants (I think)

tufted duck (you'll have to take my word for it)

cormorant with grey Heron.
I digiscoped this next Heron pic with my phone.

digiscoped Heron

And I mercilessly cropped this Little Egret 

there's not a lot of pixels in this one
 One of the Rangers that works at Llandegfedd told me that the water levels are not managed by pumping more water into the reservoir (even though there's a pump house on site) they are heavily reliant on the rain fall to bring the water levels back up.
They want to hope it rains pretty soon or we could be watching desert Camels bounding across this barren land.