Monday, 14 October 2013

Two lovely Grey birds in a (not so) grey day

I had a short trip to Tophill Low this morning. I wanted to see Whooper Swans, but they were nowhere to be seen at D res. On the approach road, however, I had a group of birds running in front of the car. I first thought they were pheasants, but soon was pleasantly surprised to see they were Grey Partridges. I hadn't seen this species for over 12 years. They stopped long enough for me to take some photos, although given the light conditions I had to take them through the windscreen.
  In the reserve itself things were quiet. In D-res many Coots, a few Great Crested Grebes, Pochard, Wigeon and a few Goldeneyes. As I walked towards D woods, a couple of Grey Wagtails fed together on the wall, my second grey species for the day.
 There were many Long-tailed tit flocks about in the reserve, and in D woods I saw Goldcrest, Treecreeper and Marsh Tits.
  Just a moorhen in North Marsh, no sign of Kingfishers. The windy conditions and occasional rain probably putting them off. Other than the colourful Galloway, some works by Helmpholme meadows meant the place was quite deserted.
 As I walked by the straight side of D res, I heard the rattling call of a crow. Two carrion crows were mobbing a Kestrel very vigorously, the Kestrel seemed to be distressed as it kept calling. I wonder if it was a young individual and the crows were taking advantage of its inesperience.
Despite the forecast of rain, the sun shore in some bright spells, and, although there was a bit of drizzle at some point, it was overall a pleasant walk around the north of the reserve.
 Two young rabbits snoozing.
and the snoozing Pochards
Given the poor light conditions, I was happy to get a Goldcrest in focus.
Goldeneye moulting
I like the size comparison of a Common Gull and Herring Gull in this shot.
Unfortunately, the Great Black Back gull flock took off before I could take some shots
This caterpillar, still to ID (please comment if you know what it is!), and some wasps were the only invertebrates I saw today.
Bird list
  1. Black-headed Gull 
  2. Blackbird 
  3. Blue Tit 
  4. Bullfinch 
  5. Carrion Crow 
  6. Chiffchaff 
  7. Coal Tit 
  8. Common Gull 
  9. Coot 
  10. Cormorant 
  11. Dunnock 
  12. Goldcrest 
  13. Goldeneye 
  14. Great Black-backed Gull 
  15. Great Crested Grebe 
  16. Great Tit 
  17. Grey Wagtail 2 
  18. Greylag Goose 
  19. Herring Gull 
  20. House Sparrow 
  21. Jackdaw 
  22. Kestrel 1 
  23. Little Grebe 2 
  24. Long-tailed Tit 
  25. Mallard 
  26. Marsh Tit 
  27. Moorhen 
  28. Mute Swan 2 
  29. Pheasant 
  30. Pochard 
  31. Robin S - Singing male 
  32. Skylark 
  33. Treecreeper 1 
  34. Tufted Duck 
  35. Wigeon 
  36. Woodpigeon 

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