Monday, 25 June 2012

Very very very bad news.

Hi guys, I dont know how to put this too you, its very hard to say but.............wait for it...............................................!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!...............................Im back.  Yes I did say that, I have returned to planet blog.  Since the Alrewas birder blog trod its final path I have quite missed the blogging and recently thought about returning.  I didnt want to carry on with the original blog for various reasons so I have created a new beast.  This beast is mainly about patchwork birding with the odd bit of field trip write ups and the title, what else,  I have decided to have a go with a blog dedicated to my favorite area, not very exciting I know.  Also, as you will see there are a few tabs under the main picture about trips away.  I will not put all the stuff on there, just special trips around.  So there you go, three months away from the blogesphere and I had to return.  Please accept my deepest apologise for this.

I am currently having difficulties searching for this blog.  Let me know how you get on, I may have done something wrong.

I have put a link to the new blog from this blog which works find.  Please take a look and add any sightings from your visit or to the site list I am creating.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

10-3-12, Last Orders Please.

Its been a bit of a chore to keep this blog going so I have decided to call it a day. Thanks for reading, and happy birding.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

7-3-12, Whitemoor Haye.

A bonus hour spare tonight so I went and lingered around the pool area before a quick drive around the lanes to mop anything else up before the faded. Birds noted around the pool/woody area were 8 Mallard with another 12 being seen sitting in a field with Mute Swans, 8 Tufted Duck, 4 Teal, Chaffinch, Magpie, Pheasant, Carrion Crow, Black Headed Gull, Linnet, Stock Dove, Wren, 1 calling Grey Partridge, Goldfinch, Canada Geese, Starling, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blue Tit, Treecreeper, Great Tit, Robin, Yellowhammer, Woodpigeon, Song Thrush, Cormorant, Pied Wagtail and Long-tailed Tit. Driving around the lanes and I could only add 163 Mute Swan, 1 Little Owl, 18 Fieldfare, a single Kestrel, 1 Grey Heron, about 500 Golden Plover, 2 Buzzard and a couple of Blackbirds.

Monday, 5 March 2012

5-3-12, News.

Well yesterdays fishing match was bloody horrible. Very cold and very wet but at least I caught some fish.
I am thinking about buying a camera, new or second hand, for my digi-scoping and I was wondering what kind of cameras people were using with their scopes. I have been scanning the internet and trying to see what other people use. I currently have an Opticon EA80. Your comments would be well received.

3-3-12, Whitemoor Haye.

My last day of a 13 day run of working and I was pretty shattered (nothing to do with the late night curry and beers last night) but managed to drag myself around my patch after finishing work and what a difference a day can make. Yesterday I was walking around in a jumper but today it was woolly hat and fleece time. Birds noted around the pool area were Black Headed Gull, Carrion Crow, 12 Tufted Duck, 12 Mallard, 2 Oystercatcher, Lesser Black-backed Gull, about 100 Golden Plover flew over the pool before heading towards Croxall but another circa 525 were noted in other fields, 1 Cormorant, Wren and Linnet. On to the lanes and I added Pheasant, 170 Mute Swan, Blackbird, Stock Dove, 2 Grey Partridge, Pied Wagtail, Starling, about 2500 Woodpigeon flew out of a wood just beyond Sittles Farm, about 60 Lapwing, Robin, 1 Buzzard, 1 Grey Heron, Rook, Chaffinch, Tree Sparrow, 1 Little Owl, Yellowhammer, Skylark, 74 Fieldfare, 1 Redwing, Magpie, Song Thrush, Jackdaw and Great Tit.

Thats my birding done for the weekend as I have a fishing match tomorrow.

2-3-12, Whitemoor Haye.

I managed to finish a little but early from work so I was at Whitemoor Haye for about 3.45 and the weather was very pleasant so I was looking forward to a decent walk around my local patch. I started around the pool and noted the following. Wren, Robin, Carrion Crow, 8 Tufted Duck, 32 Pochard, 2 Oystercatcher, Blue Tit, Great Tit, 58 Wigeon, Blackbird, Magpie, 14 Mallard, Canada Geese, Greylag Geese, a single Curlew which I first heard then saw flying out of a far field and headed south, Black Headed Gull, Dunnock, Lesser Black-backed Gull, a single Treecreeper in the wood by the pool, Goldfinch and a few Skylark starting to get territorial. Onto the lanes and I added 5 Grey Partridge, 139 Mute Swan, one Raven flying over, Pheasant, about 250 Golden Plover, about 200 Lapwing, Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer, Chaffinch, Reed Bunting, 1 Little Owl, 2 Buzzard, Stock Dove, Starling, Fieldfare, Jackdaw, Rook, Moorhen, Pied Wagtail, Collared Dove, Song Thrush, 1 Corn Bunting and a few Greenfinch. On my way home I stopped at the quarry pool to see if I could add anything else and a pair of Teal were near the bank. An excellent couple of hours.

Monday, 27 February 2012

26-2-12, Whitemoor Haye.

After the highs of last weeks twitch is was down to the usual stuff. Saturday consisted of work and then having a few beers whilst watching Wales put one over the English then Sunday was more work but I managed to get around Whitemoor before having a rest. Birds noted were Wigeon,Mallard, Rook, Redshank and a single Oystercatcher around the pool. There was a few ducks present until a group of at least twelve peole walked from behind the quarry having a small walk around the quarry. Out of bounds for birders, obviously ok for Gypsies hunting hares and robbing diesel and the people from the outdoor centre by the lake.
Birds added around the lanes were Blue Tit, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Skylark, Starling, Carrion Crow, Robin, Woodpigeon, 177 Mute Swan, 4 Grey Partridge, Herring Gull, Wren, Blackbird, about 70 Golden Plover however I spoke to a couple of odd chaps hanging round the lanes at Whitemoor (!!!!!!!!!!!!) and they had seen a couple of much larger flocks, about 350 Lapwing, Magpie, Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer, Stock Dove, Reed Bunting, 2 Little Owl, Kestrel, Pied Wagtail, Chaffinch, Fieldfare, Jackdaw, Greenfinch, Great Tit, Black Headed Gull, Moorhen, Pheasant, Meadow Pipit and a few Dunnocks.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

18-2-12, Rhiwderin.

There was really only one place to be this weekend and that was on a cold, wet and windy bryn bach or small hill to the non educated. Yep it was a normal day on the outskirts of Cardiff where a Yankee warbler had turned up along with most bloggers!!!! A group of us headed down to the village early Saturday in full excitement but this was soon extinguished after a couple of hours on site in strong wind and rain, not good conditions and the bird remained hidden. With the conditions deteriorating more then group made the decision to do a bit more birding in the area but birds noted here were Dunnock, Blue Tit, Chaffinch, Bullfinch, Nuthatch, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Siskin, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Song Thrush, Buzzard, Long-tailed Tit, Robin, Pied Wagtail, Goldcrest, Magpie and Black Headed Gull. The forecast was to brighten up later so it was off to the car and on to another site.

Cosmeston Lakes CP.

This was a small nature reserve just west of Cardiff and was a temporary home to a Lesser Scaup. Within minutes of arriving the Lesser Scaup was found in with the Tufted Ducks over the far side of the lake so we headed off to get a better look.

Unfortunately my digi-scoping skills deserted me this weekend so this was the best shot I got of it but it was a real cracking full plumaged male bird. After feasting on it we headed back to the car when one of the group found a bonus Mediterannean Gull.
There was also a Whooper Swan on site but if this was gonna be claimed as a year tick then I was going to have the Tawny Owl that had just flown down from a tree and landed on a chaps hand who was, and I am sure very glad he was, wearing a thick glove on one hand!!!!! Other birds noted here were Mute Swan, Coot, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Canada Geese, Robin, Pochard, Great Crested Grebe, Magpie, Common Gull, Moorhen, Jackdaw and Herring Gull.

Cardiff Bay.

With the weather still rubbish we headed for Cardiff Bay where a Bonapartes Gull had been present. We parked up by the barrage and had a walk but we failed to locate a helipad whwre the bird was present, let alone the bird itself. But here the weather was rubbish. Birds noted were Black Headed Gull, Curlew, Cormorant, Pied Wagtail, Rock Pipit, Turnstone, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull and Carrion Crow. Oh well, at least there were a couple of year ticks in there. We was at the far end of the barrage when news come through that the star bird had been seen briefly. That was enough.


The car park was now closed as cars couldnt get in or out of the car park so we parked up in a side street, over a stile a in minutes we were with the gathering masses all trying to look in a small ditch adn it was not long before a small browny green bird with an obvious yellow chest quickly popped onto a perch before dropping down again,a COMMON YELLOWTHROAT. This was a 1st winter male blown in from America and it was a real stunner. Like a muppet I had bought all of my gear bar my bins, and all of the gear bar my bins were no good. I tried some photos but the bird was very mobile, only perching for a milli second before back down on the ground. It was chasing small flies and many people commented on the flycatcher like feeding. We watched the bird for about 30 minutes before it had had enough and started feeding along teh hedgerow. As we headed back down the hill to the car park it had moved 200 yards in the space of a couple of minutes and the masses were in hot persuit. We went home. Many thanks to the driver and his navigator for the day, great fun.

Monday, 20 February 2012

12-2-12, Alrewas GP.

Im a bit late putting out these posts so I will keep them to the point. It was WeBS weekend and so it was the usual lakes counting birds however with a quick big freeze there could be a slight problem. First pit was the gravel pit by the A38. Birds noted were Great Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Goldfinch, Redwing, Mute Swan, Tufted Duck, Blue Tit, Blackbird, Wigeon, Pochard, Robin, Collared Dove, Cormorant, Coot, Mallard, Dunnock, Canada Geese, Carrion Crow, Black Headed Gull, Fieldfare, Magpie, Wren, Chaffinch, Redshank, Pied Wagtail, Lapwing, Gadwall, Grey Heron, Goldeneye, Shoveler, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Grey Wagtail, Teal, Greylag Geese, Great Crested Grebe and a bonus Kingfisher.

National Arboretum.

Birds noted were Chaffinch, Redwing, Lesser Redpoll, Canada Geese, Carrion Crow, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Blackbird, Mallard, Teal, Goosander, Fieldfare, Starling, Kingfisher, Tufted Duck, Coot, Moorhen, Black Headed Gull, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Woodpigeon, Long-tailed Tit and Woodpigeon.

Junction Pit.

A very frozen pit but birds noted were Chaffinch, Great Tit, Mallard and Blue Tit.

Croxall GP.

Another 99.99% frozen pool but there was a small patch of water around the edge which held a few ducks. Birds noted were Little Egret, Shelduck, Chaffinch, Redshank, Mallard, Teal, Buzzard, Cormorant, Wren, Kingfisher, Redwing, Blackbird, Great Tit, Woodpigeon, Dunnock, Long-tailed Tit. Grey Heron, Snipe, Mute Swan, Magpie, Meadow Pipit, Canada Geese, Fieldfare, Robin, Kestrel and Starling.

Undisclosed Pit.

Birds noted were Goosander, Wigeon, Tufted Duck, Goldeneye, Shoveler, Mallard, Teal, Coot, Canada Geese, Cormorant, Little Grebe, Chaffinch, Meadow Pipit, Smew, Skylark, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Lapwing and Mute Swan.

I will try and crearte a table to give the count numbers and paste it onto a posting if that is possible.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

19-2-12, News.

Unfortunately been a bit busy over the past week with work and twitches but whilst inn the pub at the debating table, i was forced to use my phone to go on tinternet and was suprised to see a link to a document called "White Wagtail split from Pied Wagtail". Is this true? Can anyone confirm this document? I loves an armchair tick???
news of the last couple of weekends birding to come but to tease!!!!

Smew on a gravel pit
Lots of Shoveler and Goosander to report
A beutiful Common Yellowthroat
A bread eating Whooper Swan and a cracking Lesser Scaup
A nearly bird of the day Goldcrest
But first, bed.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Rutland Water Photos.

Dunlin on the North shore

A funny sheep but well wrapped up against the weather

One of the many paths.

Barb wire and fencing covered in frost 1 inch thick!!

Another shot along the paths.

More frost on a branch.

Another shot of a path.



Great Tit





More frost on barb wire

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

11-2-12, Rutland Water.

With all of this superb cold weather I fancied a nice mini trip out. The Western Sandpiper had not been reported and to be honest, with all of the dodgy roads around, I didnt want to travel to far so I decided to head for Rutland Water. A good day can get you plenty of birds here and ideal to give the year list a good kick up the arse. I was eventually on site about 08.50 (after breaking down in Melton Mowbray) and it was bloody freezing, easily minus double figures with at least four inches of snow still on the ground. Fantastic. I started at the Egleton reserve and headed around Lax Hill before trying the lagoons but I was hampered by two things, fog and ice. Birds noted were Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Great Tit, Blue Tit, Robin, Collared Dove, Blackbird, Tree Sparrow, Redwing, Dunnock, Greenfinch, Kestrel, Wren, Moorhen, Canada Geese, Grey Heron, Mallard, Black Headed Gull, Bullfinch, Green Woodpecker, Egyptian Geese, Wigeon, Coot, Shelduck, Gadwall, Meadow Pipit, Pochard, Mute Swan, Great Crested Grebe, Cormorant, Goldeneye, Teal, Pied Wagtail, Chaffinch, Dunlin, Nuthatch, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Stock Dove, Pheasant, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Magpie, Pintail, Greylag Geese, Goldfinch, Fieldfare, Linnet, Song Thrush, Black-tailed Godwit, Starling, Lapwing, Knot, Water Rail, Reed Bunting, Siskin, Long-tailed Tit and Rook. Next stop was the Lyndon reserve for Smew and Scaup, or so I thought!!! I turned down the fairly clear track and kept driving downhill towards the car park, no shut signs or no entry signs etc. I rounded a bend and strainght on to ice and snow and I was thinking it would be a struggle to get out. This became very evident when I reached the car park and it was shut. Doh. I managed to turn the car in a gateway but that was as far as I was going. I was well and truely stuck. In nearly twenty years of motoring this was the first time I had ever got proper stuck. A phone call to the reserve centre and I was eventually freed after a couple of hours driving through the car park then along the track adjacent to the bird hides and on too the roads. I decided to give up looking around here and tried for another bird in another part of the reserve. Not having seen a Long-tailed Tit for several years the one that has been in the north arm for sometime was well needed. I parked up near a carpark and was soon watching, at long range, a cracking Long-tailed Duck. I also added in this area Woodpigeon, Buzzard, Goosander, Buzzard and Little Grebe. With not much else to find I headed home. It wasnt till later that evening Birdguides mentioned a Black-necked Grebe that was seen not far from the Long-tailed Duck but my pager wasnot working properly that day and so I never got that message. I went home.

Foremark Reservoir.

I was heading down the A50 and there was still a bit of daylight left so I decided to divert to Foremark reservoir to look at the gull roost. I arrived just as dusk was falling and noted the following. Coot, Great Crested Grebe, Black Headed Gull, Cormorant, Carrion Crow, Mallard, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Common Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Blackbird, Wren, Pheasant, Goldeneye and Pied Wagtail. Having only done this roost once when the Franklins Gull was present, it seemed a difficult roost to check out as the birds were spread over a very wide area meaning it was hard to keep scanning through and try to be thorough when the birds are well spread and mobile. This could have been the reason why no one else was present. I went home.

Monday, 6 February 2012

6-2-12, Stubbers Green.

With a day off I decided to do something weird, go and photograph and study some gulls. Gulls are a major weakness to me and it is more than time I did something about it. After taking the dog to the vets I was at the gull heaven for about 10.45. The sailing pool 95% frozen and there was a few gulls on the ice but not many. Then the photographs began although they are not very good as A) my camera is a bit old, B) I am rubbish and C) there was a misty haze every now and again that came over the lake but I had a go and photographing the species.

To start with, a Black Headed Gull.

Then comes along an adult Lesser Black-backed Gull. So far hopefully so good.

A couple of Herring Gulls.

Common Gull.

Not really sure what this gull was!!!!!!!!

From the size alone I figured this was a Great Black-backed Gull. Looking at Gulls by Olsen and Larsson its hard to put an age on but possibly a 3rd winter!!!!!

Another chap was on site who was pretty good with gulls and gave me some advice whilst looking for gulls and he was a bit interested in this juvenile due to the lack of contrast between the wing coverts and the breast so I took a photo to see what others think.

This was another gull the chap was interested in. Lesser Black-backed body but the wing tips look long and as it is in adult plumage the legs are not yellow but pink. He thought proberbly a Herring x Lesser Black-backed hybrid. Again opinions welcome.

And finally a couple of shots of one of the Caspian Gulls that have been freqenting Stubbers Green. I had a handy chat with the chap on why this was a classic Caspian. Very interesting and hopefully I will remember these next time and find my own.

The complete bird list for the area was Shoveler, Black Headed Gull, Coot, Tufted Duck, Canada Geese, Mute Swan, Mallard, Blackbird, Woodpigeon, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Common Gull, Great Black-backed Gull, Carrion Crow, Jackdaw, Magpie, Great Tit, Caspian Gull, Blue Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Fieldfare, Goldfinch and Starling.

Whitemoor Haye.

Onto the local patch and the pool was still completely frozen so it was on to the lanes and birds noted were Magpie - about 20 in total were seen including a group of 13, Robin, Blue Tit, Carrion Crow, Black Headed Gull, Starling, Great Tit, 4 Mallards flying over, Goldfinch, Wren, Dunnock, 322 Mute Swan, a single Corn Bunting singing, 3 Grey Heron, c20 Lapwing, Lesser Black-backed Gull, a Kingfisher which flew out of the ditch, Blackbird, Tree Sparrow, 16 Fieldfare, Yellowhammer, Chaffinch, 2 Little Owls, Reed Bunting, 18 Golden Plover, a single Song Thrush, Stock Dove, Woodpigeon, Pheasant, Canada Geese and and a couple of Pied Wagtails.


Twas dentist time at 16.00 but walking through afterwards I noticed a few Pied Wagtails on top of the shops roofs in the arcade, about 30 in total. Then passing Argos byu the car park there must have been another 90 to 100 birds on the roofs. I have seen pictures of urban roosts in trees with masses of Pied Wagtails and I would love to see this spectacle and hopefully its occering in Lichfield.

I went home.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

5-2-12, Whitemoor Haye.

By-eck the forecasters do it right. Saturday afternoon we had a right royal dumping of the white stuff so didn't bother popping to Whitemoor Haye and todays fishing match has been cancelled. With family commitments now the order of the day, including some beer, I only had time for a local patch visit. As is now the reality there was nowt on the pool so I continued to park the car up and walk around the lanes with girlfriend and dog in tow. I was not expecting much on the birding front because A) loads of snow, B) a very happy, constantly yapping hound and C) a chatty girlfriend playing with a yappy hound but it trurned out ok, not a bad bird list. Birds noted were 2 Bullfinch, Carrion Crow, c 30 Tree Sparrow, Robin, a couple Fieldfare, 6 Grey Partridge, Woodpigeon, c40 Golden Plover, c500 Lapwing, Black Headed Gull, Wren, c 1000 Starlings, 6 Snipe sheltering in the ditches as the pools were well frozen, a year tick too, Blackbird, 121 Mute Swan, 2 Grey Heron, several Reed Butings, loads of Dunnocks, Blue Tit, Chaffinch, Pheasants, several Yellowhammer, 30+ Skylarks flew over when diturbed by a dog walker in a field along with c250 Redwing, Goldfinch, a single Buzzard, Linnet, Great Tit, Magpie and nearing where the car was parked a raptor came across the fields and started chasing Skylarks. I got the scope the scope on the bird and for several minutes I was watching a superb adult male Merlin. Very enjoyable. Off to the pub now.
Below are a few photos taken along the way.
The Whitemoor Haye lanes.

The views over to Sittles Farm where the masses of Mute Swans usually gather.

Tree Sparrow in a hedge.

Robin in a hedge next to Tree Sparrows (see above)

Some of the c1000 Starlings.

3-2-12, Whitemoor Haye.

Slowly the nights are drawing out allowing the odd bit of post work birding. I likes that!! I had about an hour before it was too dark so a very quick look on the pool, which was frozen, produced nothing so I concentrated on the lanes. Birds noted were Magpie, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, about 400 Lapwing, 40-50 Mallard which were seen in flight over the far side of the quarry/river, upset by shooters, a massive 392 Mute Swan, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Black Headed Gull, Blackbird, Chaffinch, Blue Tit, Fieldfare, Tree Sparrow, Dunnock, Robin, Yellowhammer, a single Grey Heron, 2 Little Owl, 131 Jackdaw seen flying to roost fron the pig farm, 2 Pied Wagtail, Pheasant, Starling, a single Golden Plover, and Wren.
Work again tomorrow then a fishing match on Sunday so no more birding this weekend unless I can get to Whitemoor Haye after work tomorrow although the forecast is snow. If that comes true I might watch England v Scotland.

Friday, 27 January 2012

27-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

After a three day 1st aid course I had a good 90 mins of light spare at the end of the day so I got my dog and headed out to the good old local patch. I started off at the quarry pool area and the skies were like a scene from Independance Day. A big black cloud slowly started moving over Whitemoor Haye apart from a thin sliver in the middle and in each side it was hammering down but the middle was not too bad. I stayed at the pool and in that area I noted Pheasant, Black Headed Gull, Magpie, Sparrowhawk, Starling, Blackbird, about 1000 Lapwing were flying around being very insettled (another circa 250 were in another field further on around the lanes), 9 Wigeon, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon (I saw circa 600 birds flying into roost whilst counting the last group of Mute Swans), a single Buzzard, Canada Geese, Wren, Blue Tit, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Robin, 4 Mallard, 2 Fieldfare flying over the pool but I also added another 120ish further around the lanes, and a single Goldfinch over. Onto the lanes and the skies were really black and as I was looking for the Little Owls it started raining although not too bad but either side it was really heavy for about ten minutes. A tad lucky me thinks. Birds noted around here were two groups of Golden Plover of circa 30 and circa 100, 365 Mute Swan, Chaffinch, circa 30 Tree Sparrow, Reed Bunting, Cormorant, Yellowhammer, Dunnock, 2 Grey Partridge, 13 Pied Wagtails flew over head, 5 Redwings in with the second group of Fieldfares, 2 Grey Herons, 2 Moorhens and a single Little Owl at dusk.

Monday, 23 January 2012

23-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

A day off today and thank whoever the wind had dropped and it was very nice around Whitemoor Haye. Around the lake and woods I noted Lesser Black-backed Gull, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Carrion Crow, Robin, Black Headed Gull, 39 Wigeon, 1 Little Egret, 8 Mallard, Wren, 5 Tufted Duck, Woodpigeon, Skylark, Blue Tit, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Blackbird, Meadow Pipit, Starling, 2 Fieldfare, Pheasant, Magpie, 2 Grey Heron and Canada Geese. On to the lanes and I added about 1000 Lapwing, about 500 Golden Plover, Dunnock, 1 Grey Partridge, Pied Wagtail, 337 Mute Swan, a single Corn Bunting, Tree Sparrow, Great Tit, Reed Bunting, Cormorant, Stock Dove, Buzzard, Linnet and 2 Collared Doves. There was a noticable increase in Reed Buntings today. In recent visits I have had the odd one, always female but today there was a few males and females around.

Stubbers Green.

After a bit of shopping I headed again for a bit of punishment and targeted the gulls at the sailing pool. When I arrived there was a fair few cars around and things were looking promising. Birds noted were Mallard, Canada Geese, Coot, Black Headed Gull, Lapwing, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Magpie, Moorhen, Jackdaw, Carrion Crow, Common Gull, Starling, Dunnock, Tufted Duck, Great Crested Grebe, Kestrel, Herring Gull, Woodpigeon, Stock Dove and a couple of pairs of Shoveler.
As soon as I arrived on site I joined a few other birders who were on a possible Caspian Gull. As this is a nightmare bird for me I had bought along the gull bible (written by the Swedish or Danish people but cannot remeber as book still in the car) to try and find one. I fetched the book and we pondered over the bird for some time and to us it ticked all of the boxes. Sloping forehead, flat head, cigar looking bill and small dark eye. We couldn't see the legs as the bird was always in the water. The group of us were very happy but then a birder came along who was not sure as it just didn't look right, he thought it was a possible Yellow-legged Gull. I did take some photos but only with a 500mm slr and the bird cannot be seen good enough. After coming back home and looking at the bird on the Chasewater wildlife website I am convinced this is the bird we were watching.

22-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

Today I had planned to visit a few sites but I had not taken into consideration the weather. It was pretty blowy at home but after loading up the dog and arriving at the quarry pool it was an absolute gail. I had a scan through the ducks on the pool but they kept disappearing behind huge waves and at one point it blew my scope over but no damage. Birds noted on the pool and around the area were Starling, Lesser Black-backed Gull, 13 Mute Swan, Canada Geese, Greylag Geese, about 1000 Lapwing, Teal, Wren, Mallard, Wigeon, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon, Robin, Goldeneye, Tufted Duck, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Bullfinch, Long-tailed Tit, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Buzzard, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Black Headed Gull and Chaffinch. Onto the very windy lanes and I could only add about 250 Golden Plover, a single Great Black-backed Gull, Dunnock, Skylark and Blackbird. I cannot remeber the last time it happened but I gave up birding after reaching the swans when I couldn't hold the bins steady enough to count the swans. It was not very enjoyable so I went home.

21-1-12, Croxall GP.

After the ups and then the downs of the Atherstone Night Heron it was back to normal sort of. Midweek my plan was to head south to see a Spanish Sparrow and a Dark-eyed Junco but after this year deciding to try and get or join people to go on twitches to share fuel but this time failing to get anyone and also doing my back in on Thursday night whilst cutting up logs, I decided to stay local. Birds noted were Magpie, Great Tit, 1 Kingfisher, about 80 Tufted Duck, about 60 Lapwing, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon, Wren, Blackbird, Great Spotted Woodpecker, 196 Teal, 40 Mallard, 7 (4 female, 3 male) Goldeneye, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Chaffinch, Robin, Cormorant, an amazing 483 Pochard, 1 Mute Swan, about 100 Black Headed Gull, a single Kestrel, Jackdaw, Canada Geese, 4 Wigeon, Meadow Pipit, Rook, 1 Little Egret, 2 Goosander on the river and Stock Dove.
Whitemoor Haye has been short of Pochard recently but it looks like Croxall has them all.

Whitemoor Haye.

First stop was by the pool and there was actually some life on there but I then noticed some trigger happy shooters walking around the pool blasting anything that flew past them and the worse thing is not picking anything up to be cooked or given away. Im not against shooting and my fridge has its fair share of Pheasant and Mallard breast meat ready for a nice casserole but to shoot and leave it to rot or for the fox, I don't understand it. Anyway they had driven the ducks to the road end of the pool and in the area I noted Starling, Magpie, about 25 Mallard, about 40 Pochard, about 20 Wigeon, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Goldfinch, Long-tailed Tit, Greenfinch, Chaffinch, Wren and Woodpigeon. Onto the lanes and I added Pied Wagtail, Tree Sparrow, about 1000 Lapwing, Blue Tit, Carrion Crow, 1 Buzzard, 358 Mute Swan, 1 Goosander flying over, 14 Grey Partridge, Dunnock, Blackbird, Stock Dove, Robin, 1 Song Thrush, a single Golden Plover flying over and a few Meadow Pipits.

Stubbers Green.

A new year, a new list and gulls are needed so it was off to the gull Mecca of the West Midlands to try and fill some gaps however my timing was absolutely awful. I arrived just after 11.00 and noted Black Headed Gull, Mallard, Mute Swan, Tufted Duck, Canada Geese, Pied Wagtail, Coot, Magpie, Moorhen, Carrion Crow, Starling, Lesser Blacl-backed Gull, Herring Gull, Common Gull, Cormorant and Jackdaw. I left just before midday and later on when I was at home cutting up more logs news came through of Iceland, Glaucous and Caspian Gull present at 12.00. Arrggggghhhhhhhhhhh

Saturday, 21 January 2012

19-1-12, Atherstone.

I was helping with a lock stoppage open day at Atherstone on the Thursday and when I arrived the work lads (knowing I am of the birding persuasion) started talking to me about a heron that had been present for a couple of days and on that morning was sitting in the paddle hole which is no more than two foot high. We then argued about Grey Heron being too big for the hole and juveniles not born yet then we got too work. A couple of hours later one of the lads shouted me down the towpath to come and look at something and when I was theer he pointed in the tree and there was what I thought was an adult Night Heron. Not ever seeing one before though my other mate used modern technology and googled it on his phone and sure enough, it was. Un ortunately no cameras were available. I was thinking about putting the news on RBA but the towpath was closed to general access for construction works so birders would not be able to get close but I knew that the big lens boys would certainly try so I spoke to some birders in the evening and we decided to not let the information out until the towpath was empty. The news broke on Saturday 21st by a local person so I rang RBA to mention about the no access on site due to H&S but by looking at some photos this has obviously been ignored.
It turns out now the bird has a ring and was originally from Holland. I rang Twycross Zoo on the Thursday night as I thought the bird could have escaped from there but they have no records of Night Herons at there zoo. I wonder where this one has come from????

Monday, 16 January 2012

15-1-12, Alrewas GP.

I still have not decided on what my main objectives are this year birding wise but today I thought I would stay pretty local and mop up some year birds.......that is until I was checking the Chasewater wildlife website about any white-winged gulls when I saw it was WeBS count weeknend. Doh. So it was off around the pits I go. I was out of the house at dawn, on my bike, and soon walking over some very frozen grass. Absolutely lush, it can stay cold, frosty and sunny for ever as far as I'm concerned but might have to move to the tundra for that. Birds noted were Redwing, Robin, Canada Geese, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Pied Wagtail, Great Tit, Grey Heron, Woodpigeon, Magpie, Blackbird, Black Headed Gull, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Coot, Carrion Crow, Fieldfare, Wren, Great Crested Grebe, Wigeon, Pochard, Gadwall, Blue Tit, Goldeneye, Mute Swan and Grey Wagtail which was an unexpected but welcomed bonus.

National Arboretum.

Although this is not a proper counting area I have to pass through here for the other sites so I noted down what I saw plus any wildfowl/waders on the river. Birds noted were Bullfinch, Dunnock, Mallard, Carrion Crow, Lapwing, Blue Tit, Robin, Canada Geese, Blackbird, Wren, Cormorant, Treecreeper, Goldcrest, Lesser Redpoll, Long-tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Goldeneye, Buzzard, Magpie, Tufted Duck, Coot and Greenfinch.

Junction Pit.

Once again not a lot to report on here. Grey Heron, Canada Geese, Mallard, Blue Tit, Kingfisher, Blackbird, Wren and Bullfinch were all I could find with Mallard being the most numerous with a single pair. Say no more really.

Croxall GP.

During the walk around Junction Pit I walked along the river to pass through the arboretum and here I could view the wides a lot easier than spooking everything from the reserve side and I noted Redshank, Canada Geese, Mute Swan and Little Egret. From the arboretum I could see that duck numbers were pretty high on here so walking upto the hide I concentrated on counting the ducks then the other birds on the way back. I added Lesser Redpoll, Goldfinch, Long-tailed Tit, Fieldfare, Chaffinch, Carrion Crow, Teal, Mallard, Tufted Duck, Coot, Woodpigeon, Blackbird, Grey Heron, Wren, Gadwall, Moorhen, Goldeneye, Mute Swan, Great Tit, Bullfinch, Snipe, Dunnock, Black Headed Gull, Kingfisher, Cormorant, Lesser Black-backed Gull and Robin.

Whitemoor Haye.

Apart from a quick trip to Barton marina pool that was the count done so I had a steady walk around the usual patch to see what was about. Unortunately the pool was very unproductive, the birds have been well frightened off from the boats. Is this the end of this pool for birding??? A nice find was feeding in the small wood by the quarry entrance but it was back to earth with a bump with some quiet lanes. Birds noted were Grey Partridge, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Blackbird, Tufted Duck, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Robin, Wren, Stock Dove, Blue Tit, Goldfinch, Woodpigeon, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Dunnock, Willow Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Black Headed Gull, Buzzard, Mute Swan, Corn Bunting, Yellowhammer, Chaffinch, Tree Sparrow, Little Owl, Lapwing, Skylark, Golden Plover, Linnet, Pied Wagtail, Wigeon and Bullfinch.

Fradley Junction NR.

After Barton pool to count ducks it was the last visit of the day to the reserve I work on in work and I fancied doing a bit of photography. I have set up a feeding station in the reserve and I regularly get Nuthatch on the bird table and this was my main target but a decent photo of anything would have done. Infortunately rsults were pretty poor but I might put my best ones up. Birds noted whilst there were Mallard, Black Headed Gull, Coal Tit, Blue Tit, Nuthatch, Great Tit, Woodpigeon, Buzzard, Blackbird and Chaffinch. Nothing stunning but was nice just sitting watching the birds feed away pretty close.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

13 & 14-1-12, Whitemoor Haye and a little bit of Fradley Junction NR.

Yesterday and today I have been at worked but manged to finish with about an hour of light left on each day so I decied to head to Whitemoor to see what was occuring. On both occasions I headed off to count the swans first before seeing what was down the lanes. Then it was of to the quarry pool and surroundoing area to see what I could add.
13th - Blackbird, 329 Mute Swan, Canada Geese, Robin, Lapwing, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Carrion Crow, Tree Sparrow, Pheasant, Rook, Grey Heron and Fieldfare down the lanes and 7 Mallard, 1 Tufted Duck, a single gobby Wren and a couple of noisy Jackdaw. The pool was ammazingly empty, dunno whats occuring.

14th - Blackbird, 337 Mute Swan, Black Headed Gull, Carrion Crow, Woodpigeon, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Tree Sparrow, Lapwing, Fieldfare, Magpie, Starling, Dunnuck, Little Owl, Canada Geese and quite a few Blue Tits around.Onto the pool and I added a single Tufted Duck, Robin, Great Tit, Wren, 2 Mallard, 2 Red-legged Partridge and a few Pheasants.

A quick chat with Eric Clare and I discovered the reason why the quarry pool had been so quiet, there have been boats on there from the outdoor centre, rubbish. Whilst I was wasting my time at the pool I noticed lots of gulls coming from the other pool at Whitemoor Haye. These gulls are treating Whitemoor Haye as a pre roost and as we were losing light they took off heading for either Foremark or Blithfield but I was amazed by the numbers. I guess at least 600 to 700 Lesser Black-backed Gulls and at least 1000 Black Headed Gulls. There was a conszytant drip feed of larger gulls for about ten minutes before the smaller gulls got up on mass. Impressive.
Whilst working today at Fradley I managed to see a Treecreeper whilst topping up my feeders. Bonus.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

12-1-12, News.

Firstly I managed to catch up on a Nuthatch today whilst checking some work at Fradley Junction. Nice. Just had a look on Birdguides as my pager died this morning and if I got a day off and lots of money and luck I could nail 6 lifers in 1 day, Dark Eyed Junco, Ring-billed Gull and Spanish Sparrow down south and Coues Arctic Redpoll, Western Sandpiper and Lesser White-fronted Goose in Norfolk. Anyone fancy a roadtrip?

8-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

With a hungover girlfriend in tow I spent the morning steadily ambling around Whitemoor. We decided to check out the lanes first for a change. Birds noted were Collared Dove, Robin, Wren, Blue Tit, Carrion Crow, Magpie, Woodpigeon, Starling, Dunnock, Mute Swan - I tried to count them but they were quite flighty due to a few hunters arounf the quarry), Blackbird, Canada Geese, Black Headed Gull, Tree Sparrow, Great Tit, Skylark, Fieldfare, Lapwing, Stock Dove, Linnet, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Cormorant and Corn Bunting. Very quiet. Onto the pool area and I only added 3 Tufted Duck, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 10 Wigeon and a single Goldeneye. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I went home to chill and watch the FA cup.

7-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

Another morning around Whitemoor Haye and I started looking around the area of the quarry entrance which included the pool, the lane on the otherside of the road to the pool and also the small wood along the lane. Birds noted around here were Dunnock, Magpie, Black Headed Gull, Woodpigeon, Wren, Carrion Crow, 9 Mallard, 5 Tufted Duck, an amazing count of 245 Pochard - I cant remember that many before, Blue Tit, Blackbird, 28 Lapwing, Robin, Grey Heron, Goldfinch, Kestrel, Great Tit and Stock Dove. Onto the usual lanes and I added 323 Mute Swans, Pheasant, Buzzard, a single Golden Plover flying over (I had to double check on my cd's that it was not a Grey Plover as I am not to up on the flight calls and one been seen around super Utch GP recently if not that morning (I am writing this 5 days on, memory not good), Starling, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Greylag Geese, Canada Geese, Skylark, Fieldfare, a super adult female Peregrine dropped from out of nowhere on the hunt, Tree Sparrow and Pied Wagtail.


I had to visit the sailing club at Blithfield on work business, that and missing the Black Redstart on Christmas Day, I decided to make the trip worth while.......hopefully. Having sorted out what was needed to be sorted out it was hunting a small blackish bird, I headed towards the usual bay but having read other blogs and also the fact that somebody was having a mooch around the newly dug drains and looking gloomy, I concentrated on the shoreline and within minutes I saw a small bird fly from the shoreline into a small tree but by the time I trained my scope on the bird it had disappeared. I was soon joined by the other chap and after a while around where I saw said tiny bird with no luck we walked adjacent to the shore up to the dam but nothing so returned. A bit further on was a taller tree and after having a look the Black Redstart soon showed itself. Cracking. I must add the conditions were immensely windy so birding on the water was minimal. Other birds noted were Mute Swan, Cormorant, Wigeon, Lapwing, Greylag Geese, Black Headed Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Coot, Mallard, Fieldfare, Carrion Crow and Wren.

After going home for a bite to eat and look at any FA cup footry, I decided to head to a private gravel pit. Of interest there were plenty of usual wilfowl (Mallard, Wigeon, Tufted Duck and Gadwall) plus a good numbers of Goldeneye, Shoveler and Great Crested Grebe and a pair of Pintail which was a nice bonus. A half decent gull roost was gathering as dusk was approaching and I was interested as to whether theis was a proper roost or just a pre-roost but unfortunately three gun toting people were walking the shoreline and the gulls didn't hang about, and after a few shots neither did I.

Whitemoor Haye.

Dusk was upon me by the time I arrived here but I fancied hanging around looking for any owls that I coulkd add to the year list. Soon enough the Little Owl wasout on the edge of the tree before flying off but no sign of any other owls. I went home.

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

4-1-12, Whitemoor Haye.

A bit of a Brucy bonus when driving home through Whitemoor Haye tonight, 3 Grey Partridge flew over the road in front of the van. Nice. Ive got to pop to Blithfield on Saturday for work purposes, need to pop to the sailing club to talk about some training for my new boat. Really hoping the Black Redstart will still be showing as I will not be able to resist a bit of birding.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

2-1-12, Upper Longdon.

Today I decided to head over to Upper Longdon to get the Great Grey Shrike which has been very showy. With the forecast being good I was hoping to try and get a half decent photo of this bird as my previous attempts have been rather crap. I arrived on site and the bird was showing straight away on one of the stumps but after a few minutes it flew off. After a quick chat to a fellow blogger I was told where the bird goes and it returns pretty quickly. We were not disappointed and soon getting great views of this beautiful creature.

Other birds noted were Great Tit, Chaffinch, Woodpigeon and Redwing. With the cold slowly winning we werte about to head off when a chap mentioned he had seen a few Bramblings in a flock of about 100 Chaffinches. I decided to get a bit colder and go and look for them and a quick walk up thje road and the flock showed itself with at least 3 male and 2 female Bramblings. Superb.

Cannock Chase.

I decided to head off for a heathland specialist so it was off to a very busy car park before a decent walk to the spot. Ubfortunately the bird in question did not give itself up today but other birds noted were Blue Tit, Wren, Green Woodpecker, Carrion Crow, Redwing, Blackbird, Goldcrest, Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit and Chaffinch. Deep Joy!!!

As it was work the next day I decided to go home and rest.

1-1-12, Home.

Ok so its a new year and what a difference a year makes. This time last year I spent new years eve in a travellodge outside Kings Lynn before spending two days around north Norfolk, a crfacking way to spend the start of the year. This year I decided to stay local so before sunrise I took my car to Whitemoor Haye, parked it up, walked back home and had breakfast. whilst scoffing egg on toast I had one eye in the back garden for the first birds of 2012. Birds noted were Blackbird, House Sparrow, Great Tit, Woodpigeon, Collared Dove, Starling, Dunnock and Black Headed Gull.

Circa Alrewas.

Heading off to my first site and I added Blue Tit, Greenfinch, Magpie, Redwing, Long-tailed Tit, Bullfinch, Chaffinch, Carrion Crow, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Yellohammer, Fieldfare, Cormorant and Song Thrush.

Alrewas GP.

Onto the first main site of the day and I had a slow walk to the far side of the lake. Birds noted on the way were Woodpigeon, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Wren, Great Crested Grebe, Mallard, Blue Tit, Lapwing, Blackbird, Great Tit, Robin, Fieldfare, Song Thrush, Long-tailed Tit, Chaffinch, Cormorant, Grey Heron, Pied Wagtail, Black Headed Gull, Redwing, Carrion Crow, Mute Swan, Tufted Duck, Coot, Canada Geese, Pochard, Pheasant, Wigeon, Stock Dove, Little Egret, Goosander, Teal and a Sparrowhawk. Not too much wildfowl on the water, dont know if the fireworks had scared them off.

Junction Pit.

A bit of hunting and I have found a way from the pits to the back of the Junction Pit then I have the choice of entering the arboretum or walking around to the other side of the pit hopefully adding more birds. Birds noted were Pheasant, Wren, Fieldfare, Goldfinch, Dunnock, Cormorant, Tufted Duck, Mallard and Grey Heron. Still rubbish.

National Arboretum.

Naturally it is on through the arboretum as Junction Pit lies within its boundaries and birds noted here were Cormorant, Long-tailed Tit, Woodpigeon, Great Tit, Wren, Grey Heron, Redwing, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Pheasant, Canada Gees, Black Headed Gull, Carrion Crow, Mallard, Goosander, Tufted Duck, Chaffinch, Reed Bunting, Coot, Blackbird, Lapwing, Magpie, Little Egret, Fieldfare and a Little Grebe on the river.

Whitemoor Haye.

Onto good old Whitemoor Haye, hopefully the first of many visits this year and I started off around the lake. Birds noted were Dunnock, Robin, Fieldfare, Carrion Crow, 2 Mute Swan, Tufted Duck, Pochard, Lapwing, Redshank, Starling, Mallard, Black Headed Gull, Goldeneye, Wigeon and Lesser Black-backed Gull. On to the lanes and I added Magpie, Redwing, Wren, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Pheasant, 5 Corn Buntings including 3 calling males, Meadow Pipit, Yellowhammer, Tree Sparrow, Linnet, Goosander and Chaffinch. Rather quiet around the patch but it was quite breezy and very chilly so I suppose the birds were taking shelter.

Circa Catton.

With Whitemoor not giving up much I decided to have a drive around the lanes hoping to pick up the odd year tick. I only managed Stock Dove, Carrion Crow and Kestrel, the latter one going towards the year list.

With Catton not being too fruitful I headed off to Croxall but as I got to the car park i noticed there was no room to park. Was there a mega in town?? Nope just loads of dog walkers!!!!!!!

I headed home, picked up my computer from my girlfriends house and saw a Coal Tit on her feeder in the back garden. Bonus. Then I went home.

Monday, 2 January 2012

End of 2011 catch up.

Ooops, been a bit busy towards the end of the year so a few posts missing so to save boredom (and beer took hold on memory) I will list the birds from my notebook.
27-12-11, Whitemoor Haye - Magpie, Fieldfare, Carrion Crow, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Robin, Wren, Woodpigeon, Great Tit, 10 Tufted Duck, 44 Pochard, 9 Mallard, 336 Mute Swan, 23 Wigeon, Cormorant, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Buzzard, Pheasant, Redwing, Starling, Tree Sparrow, Black Headed Gull, Reed Bunting and Chaffinch.

28-12-11, Whitemoor Haye - Carrion Crow, Lapwing, Greylag Geese, Starling, Black Headed Gull, 31 Mallard, 18 Pochard, Canada Geese, 43 Wigeon, 3 Goldeneye, Grey Heron, 12 Tufted Duck, Blue Tit, Buzzard, Robin, Goldfinch, Fieldfare, Redwing, Woodpigeon, Wren, 328 Mute Swan, Lesser Black-backed Gull, 14 Grey Partridge, Dunnock, Tree Sparrow, Magpie, 3 Great Black-backed Gull, Stock Dove, Bullfinch, Skylark, Cormorant and Pied Wagtail.

29-12-11, Whitemoor Haye - Carrion Crow, Redwing, Wren, 4 Tufted Duck, 4 Mallard, Lapwing, Starling, Black Headed Gull, Greylag Geese, Canada Geese, Golden Plover, 3 Goldeneye, 5 Pochard, 23 Wigeon, Fieldfare, Goldfinch, Woodpigeon, Robin, Tree Sparrow, Blue Tit, Dunnock, Blackbird, Great Tit, 318 Mute Swan, Dunnock, Magpie, Yelloiwhammer, Pied Wagtail.

29-12-11, Croxall GP - Fieldfare, Goldfinch, Woodpigeon, Redwing, Coot, Teal, Kestrel, Blackbird, Tufted Duck, Mallard, Gadwall, Pochard, Chaffinch, Cormorant, Black Headed Gull, Canada Geese, Grey Heron, Little Grebe, Wren, Robin, Kingfisher, Goldeneye, Shoveler, Rook, Little Egret, Great Tit and Moorhen.

30-12-11, Whitemoor Haye - Magpie, Tufted Duck, Great Tit, Carrion Crow, Goldfinch, Robin, Blue Tit, Mallard, Wigeon, Cormorant, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Blackbird, Black Headed Gull, Stock Dove, Woodpigeon, Fieldfare, Chaffinch, Teal, Canada Geese, Goldeneye, Wren, Redwing, Pheasant, Tree Sparrow, Grey Heron, Song Thrush, Lapwing, 330 Mute Swan, Great Black-backed Gull, Yellowhammer, Dunnock, Buzzard, Starling, Linnet and Pied Wagtail.

31-12-11, Branston GP - Lapwing, Great Tit, Robin, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Blackbird, Fieldfare, Black Headed Gull, House Sparrow, Starling, Teal, Pheasant, Wigeon, Gadwall, Coot, Great Crested Grebe, Greylag Geese, Tufted Duck, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Mute Swan, 13 Curlew, 1 Peregrine, Stock Dove, Goldfinch, Pied Wagtail, Wren, Redwing, Golden Plover, 8 Siskin, Blue Tit, Long-tailed Tit, 1 Marsh Tit, Bullfinch, Moorhen, Buzzard, Greenfinch, Jackdaw, Goldcrest, Dunnock and Magpie.

31-12-11, Whitemoor Haye - 52 Wigeon, 4 Tufted Duck, Fieldfare, Blue Tit, Wren, Buzzard, Woodpigeon, Lapwing, Robin, 1 Pochard, 1 Great Crested Grebe, 2 Mallard, Carrion Crow, Black Headed Gull, 3 Goldeneye, Blackbird, Starling, 1 Shoveler, Goldfinch, Dunnock, Great Tit, Lesser Black-backed Gull, 304 Mute Swan, Fieldfare, Magpie, Chaffinch, Tree Sparrow, Yellowhammer, Pied Wagtail, Canada Geese and Redwing.

That wraps up the birding for 2011 and as it turns out my best year ever with 223 species seen yet I had a pretty crap summer to be honest. One aim I did have was to cover Whitemoor Haye 100 times, I actually managed 103 so happy with that. 2012 I would love to do more. If I was at school I think it will be a C- for this year, bags of room for improvement but not bad.