Saturday was a working day for me but the night time was all play, well drinking!! Back to the birding and as I was not fit to drive early Sunday I employed my birding mate to do the driving, I just sat in the passengers seat and talked rubbish. We were soon at our destination, Sherwood Forest, and in particular Budby south forest and our target was Parrot Crossbills. 14 birds (hence the title) have been present for a few days and as I have failed miserably with the two-barred variety, these were a must.
We parked in Sherwood Forest visitor centre and had a decent walk to find the birds but it was ideal to sober up. We soon found the south forest and eventually the loads of birders present all surrounding a couple of pines and there at the top were several crossbills, several Parrot Crossbills. BOOM, get in there.
Male Parrot Crossbill.
Female Parrot Crossbill
After enjoying the crossbills we had a steady walk back to the car via quite an important tree nearby, the 'Mighty Oak' which is meant to be quite famous as Robin Hood lived or hid in it, sorry history is not my strongest point. Anyway a mighty tree all the same, in fact there was several decent oaks around the forest and loads of birch that was a victim of the recent winds, by-eck there was some damage done. Nowt much to add here but we did come a cross a woman feeding the birds, she does them daily, and when the food was put out it was a frenzy of birds. Blue, Coal and Great Tits everywhere, at one point there was at least 20 Great tits queuing up. Three Nuthatches were also having a good feed.
The day was getting on a bit and after a quick food stop where we managed to miss a harsh shower we decided to head for Rufford park as both of us had not had Lesser Peckers this year. In fact this site produced my one and only Lesser Pecker a few years ago. Unfortunately we were not lucky today however we did see a Hawfinch at the tops of the trees and in the Yews there were loads of Redwings but not a lot else.
With not a lot of daylight left we headed home.