Monday, 9 November 2009

On the road to Wembley

You know, if I could muster the effort to twitch the Brown Shrike at Staines, that blog title would be rather appropriate, not that far away from Bobby Moore's statue. How much longer is it going to stay, I might crack yet. As for this weekend, I decided to go a bit lazy on the birding front. Still a bit done mind you.

Saturday 7th November.

A decent selection at Uttoxeter Quarry to start with. Including 37 Golden Plover, 2 Green Sandpiper, 6 Goosander, 23 Wigeon, 4 Redwing, 2 Fieldfare, 1 Stonechat and an intruiging flock of around 20 Reed Buntings. Worth keeping an eye on them during the winter.

A check of Swallow Moss until dusk afterwards proved rather quiet. No sign of any roosting Hen Harriers yet, but perhaps the rain didn't help matters. What was around however was this Red Deer stag. Honest guv, it really is there, but it was getting dark.

Sunday 8th November.

But the real reason for the blog title is because I have a lot of time for the F.A. Cup. I still find it rather special, there's nothing more exciting in the footie calendar than the third round draw.

Thanks to Football League status these days, the mighty Brewers go straight into the first found proper. With a potential banana-skin tie at home to Oxford City to look forward to, I thought some time spent round Whitemoor Haye and Branston would be a good idea before going to the match.

That was until I was on my way getting as far as Uttoxeter, a call from the Blurred Birder informed me of a possible Long-Tailed Duck at Blithfield, off Beech Tree Point. And so it proved to be the case. Unfortunately I had left my camera at home, but thankfully I've wheeled and dealed, a "Blaggers for Bloggers" deal, to get an exclusive picture.

Also around Blithers were a Curlew in Blithe Bay. Then in Tad Bay were an immature drake Scaup, 1 adult Yellow-Legged Gull, 13 Dunlin, 3 Goosander.

As for the footy, thankfully Burton Albion scraped a 3-2 victory, with the reward of an away tie at Gillingham. If the Brown Shrike is still around on the 28th I could combine the two, hmm................

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