Sunday, 20 March 2011

Bye Bye Winter

So what happened last week then? Where was the blog? Well, as a famous twitcher once said in a BBC4 twitching documentary, I couldn't be bothered. One of those frustrating times where, although the first few spring migrants started to appear, I didn't see one, so couldn't be bothered blogging. The best thing from last week was digiscoping this handsome chap:

As for spring migrants, this weekend I've put that right. Starting yesterday morning, at that birdless birding hotspot, Croxden Quarry. Where there were two Little Ringed Plovers, wayhey, first spring migrants of the year.

Uttoxeter Quarry had another two LRP's, 6 Curlew, 2 Green Sands, 7 Oystercatcher, 2 Shelduck, 2 Mandarin, 2 Red-legged Partridge and a Chiffchaff.

But the undoubted highlight was the staggering number of Goosanders, 80 of them! Surely this can't go on, and eventually they'll follow the River Dove and disperse into the Peak District and further north.

If like me you've got one of the pager devices for bird news, you'll know that in some areas the signal is better than in others. Sometimes around Uttoxeter Quarry, the pager signal isn't so good, and as such messages can get corrupted or just not get through at all. I assume this message was corrupted, looking at the time of the sighting, but it made me chuckle for a bit.

Finishing yesterday off with a woodland walk through Hawksmoor and down to East Wall farm. The pond next to the farm had a Grey Wagtail. That's the first one I've seen this year, and after the winter we've all had to endure, I do wonder if Grey Wagtail numbers have taken a battering. Another species that concerns me is Kingfisher, not seen any yet this year.

As for today, Uttoxeter Quarry again. Pretty similar to yesterday, a paltry 71 Goosanders! But better still were two Sand Martins. Then over to Blithfield, where Tad Bay had a Pink-footed Goose, 4 Sand Martin and a pair of Goosanders that flew out (wonder which gravel pit they were going to?). Blithe Bay had 3 Oystercatchers.

And that was it really. Pretty quiet for Blithers, but we're into spring now, so at least we've got all the birding fun of spring to look forward to.

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