Sunday, 20 May 2012

A Blue Diamond

Well that's a blog title I wasn't expecting to do today.  I was expecting more of a Sanderling theme, because there's been a few this weekend.  After breaking up from work, until after the jubilee bank holidays, on Friday, the weather conditions looked promising.  A bit of drizzle and an easterly wind.  Let's go home via Uttoxeter Quarry.  Glad I did because dotted around the main gravel pit shoreline were 5 Sanderling, 6 Ringed Plovers and 6 Dunlin.

Onto Saturday.  What did you do on your birthday this year?  Well me, I lived the dream and did some WeBS counts!  The Tad Bay count at Blithfield didn't take too long, and after scans from the causeway and dam, thoughts were turning back to Uttoxeter.  I was also doing the WeBS count here, so lets get it done.

As well as the Mallards, Tufteds, Coots etc.  Sanderling had increased to 10, Ringies to 14 and Dunlin to 12.  Then just when about finishing, a wader flew from one of side of the gravel pit to the other, making a "clip" call.  That's a Turnstone, and so it was.

And if that wasn't enough Sanderlings, Croxden Quarry had another one!  But it didn't stick around for too long.

Today wasn't a particular early start after a few birthday sherberts the night before.  After being informed by Andy that Uttoxeter had a clearout of waders, the plan to was check Branston Gravel Pits instead, blissfully unaware of the discovery at Doxey.  When arriving at Branston, Nick and George Smith (of Clayhead fame!) were leaving.  "We're going for the Bluethroat at Doxey!". 

What Bluethroat, I didn't know.  There was a point somewhere between home and Branston that the RBA pager signal was lost, and I didn't receive the message.  But thank goodness Nick and George were there, Branston can wait for another day.  In the end there was no need to worry, because over a couple of hours the in afternoon the Bluethroat showed brilliantly.

A county tick for me.  I do remember Tittesworth having a Bluethroat but I didn't see it, having seen one at Long Eaton Gravel Pits in Derbyshire, a couple of years or so earlier in the 90's.  1992 that Long Eaton bird, my GCSE year, why I wasn't revising I don't know!!!

And of course, a twitch wouldn't be complete without "The Twitch Shot".  Interestingly enough, on the right is the world's tallest man!

Well, once again, I think that's it from me for a while.  Later this week I'm doing my Michael Palin bit again, off on me travels.  This time, to Cape May, New Joysey.  So we'll see what we can see, and I'll be back in time for the diamond jubilee celebrations.  Tatty bye and toodle pip.


Ornithom said...


Excellent shots of a truly cracking Midlands bird! I managed some ropey video, so god knows how you managed to snap this very skulky little fellow.

Just out of interest, I'm the world's second tallest man with the camera bag slung over his shoulder in the foreground of your Twitcher's Shot!

Regards and happy snapping,

Steve T

Richard Powell said...

Ah yes I remember, had the young lad with you? My pics were taken only on the other side of the gate, in Digiscoper's Corner!