Tuesday, 1 November 2011


I've been neglecting the blog just lately.
It's not that I haven't been out, it's finding the time to write it up.
So in brief this is what I've been up to.

 Sunday last saw the Bedford RSPB Group trip up to Fairburn Ings in West Yorkshire, where we saw Willow Tits Tree Sparrows, Siskins, Redpolls, Bullfinches, Whooper Swans, and a couple of Black Swans, one of which was a juvenile ( how long before these are accepted as Category C birds ?)
 At the Lin Dyke end of the reserve there were a pair of Pintail, Curlews and Snipe but alas no sign of the Long-eared Owl reported earlier in the day.

 Last Thursday was wet so I took the opportunity to visit Rutland Water to see if I could see the White-rumped Sandpiper and/or the American Wigeon that had been around for the past couple of weeks.
 Lots of Dunlins were moving around in front of Lapwing Hide and presumably this was where the Sandpiper was hiding Likewise the Yank Wigeon within the Eurasian Wigeon flock and unfortunately I failed to find either.
About 400 Golden Plover, 3 Ruff and around a dozen Pintail were the best bits of this unproductive trip.

Surprisingly I've been having more luck locally.
On Saturday I caught up again with the Great White Egret at Gayhurst Quarry, where there was also a Greenshank - a very unusual record for late October in Buckinghamshire.

 We again have wintering Short-eared Owls at Linford Reserve. Last week I saw one and yesterday there were two putting on a real spectacle as they hunted the field and also did battle with the local Crows.

 Sunday morning I took a walk around Willen and finally managed to catch up with a local Cettis Warbler for the year.
 Water Rails are back, with at least two squealing in the reeds. Duck numbers continue to rise, as do Coots, Great-crested and Little Grebes. A Kingfisher was a welcome sighting from the Hide, although I'm not so sure about the Fox hunting the Ducks in the same area.

                                                              Sleeping Swan

                                                              Hiding Heron

                                                             Loafing Lapwing

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