Champions of the Flyway!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Bad Company

A pleasant sunny winter's morning here in Filey, and grateful to Dan for dragging me away from the laptop (where I'm wrestling with such cheerful topics as environemtal degradation in relation to industrialisation and urbanisation presently - it's really a laugh a minute) and into the sunshine. On the tip, Barn Owl, Roe Deer and Grey Partridges were all enjoying the disturbance-free confines of our reserve, but it was a day characterised largely by wildfowl: skeins of yapping Pink-feet on the move against clear blue skies, Wigeon and Teal commuting between various local wetlands, and most satisfyingly, a nice adult Eurasian White-fronted Goose in with the wrong crowd over at our East Lea reserve. Surrounded by our local feral mutants, it must be wondering what the hell it's let itself in for.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Western Mass, USA - November 2016

As mentioned in the last post, the (very sad) circumstances of our visit back to the family homestead meant that birding was far from a relevant part of the agenda, but there's always wildlife to enjoy on the doorstep out there, and a indeed little further beyond when the opportunity came. A lovely afternoon with Ammie and my wonderful bro-and-sis-in-laws Ned and Anna took in the Rock House reservation and the Quabbin reservoir (both within a half-hour of the house), where we stumbled on various birds and beasts, including (from above) this Belted Kingfisher, noisy and friendly Great Northern Divers, and a fly-by Bald Eagle......

... in the garden, meanwhile, were various common species, including (pictured) Chickadees, Mourning Doves, American Goldfinches, Purple Finches, Cardinals and Tufted Titmice.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Junco yard

Such are (and have been) the distractions of late, I apparently forgot to post any more from our recent visit to the family homestead in Western Massachusetts.... it's a few weeks ago now (early/mid November), and due to the sad reasons for the trip there wasn't much memory-card activity, but there's always something going on, and the arrival of Dark-eyed Juncos in the garden (from a trickle to a wave) was a particular pleasure, despite the crappy light.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Black Redstart, bay corner

It might not be from much further than, say, over the channel, but Black Redstarts aren't the commonest bird locally and getting anything like close to them around here is usually impossible (unlike those we'll be visiting in the south of France in a few weeks) - so this subtly beautiful long-stayer in the bay corner was still a treat.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Messy eaters

A misty, dew-soaked morning here in Filey was quiet but for this beautiful and accommodating female Snow Bunting on the very tip of Carr Naze. Extending the 'owners looking like their dogs' model to 'birders looking like their subjects', then I should confess to not only having a similarly dew-drenched but also husk-laden beard (after consuming a bag of mixed nuts, and evidently losing some of them, while photographing the bird). Table manners? Overrated.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Recent articles

I've just updated the wordpress site with several recent articles written for the birding media:

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Cheap Trills

Why have just a couple when you can too many? Or, as Andy Warhol said, always leave them wanting less. So here's a veritable shedload of Waxwing photos from a lovely afternoon out to Pickering with the old man yesterday. It was another one of those days when we hit it just right (there's been a lot of those for our many outings over the last year or so) - after dark cloud and erratic appearances before we got there, we were treated to sunshine and fantastic views soon after we arrived, as the birds fed in trees behind the swimming pool. Happy days - as is each and every one that's graced by Waxwings.