Saturday, 25 February 2017

Iceland Gull and Yellow-legged Gull - Swanshurst Park, Moseley

Really has been a fantastic month not only with the Waxwings round the corner from Swanshurst but also with the Iceland on Swanshurst and an added bonus with a Yellow-legged Gull :)
The Iceland Gull is still present as I write this, he has been there now about five weeks amazing to have such a stunning Gull locally, I have made quite a few visits can't resist him, Dave also came to see him but he gave us quite a wait and the weather was very dull but he came in giving nice views for Dave and he got some record shots but I still think there better than record shots lol
I have really struggled with this bird it's either to dull or to bright, strangely the Iceland Gull seems to love the sun he stays there more regular in the nicer weather but is always right in the sunlight which is very difficult with a white bird lol
After having just a fly by on one visit and no show on a couple of occasions the last time I went he spent the whole morning there again enjoying the sun rays, but I was very lucky that he flew on the fields and landed I quickly rushed round there the Iceland Gull seems quite relaxed with people but I knew if the other Gulls flew he would follow, so I took my time just taking small steps to get close then sat down took a few photos then shuffled to gradually get closer was totally worth the effort as I got my best shot so far, lighting still too bright but much better than on the water I was over the moon, love this Gull :) When he fly's it's like a ghost flying by, beautiful.

Also there was 1st winter Yellow-legged Gull which caused some controversy with people reporting it as a Caspian Gull but it really did not stand out as being a Caspian but there was lot's of people adamant that it was Caspian. Dave sent me on a mission to get a photo of the underwing this was easier said than done lol Took me over three hours but I got there in the end lol and the Underwing helped to confirm Yellow-legged Gull as it is two toned wheareas if it was Caspian it would be more completely white/lighter.
Tim Marlow goes into this in much detail and all the other differences in his blog he writes it so clear and easy to understand

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Moseley Waxwings, Birmingham

I have spent quite a few hours at Windemere Road, Moseley over the past 4 weeks with the Waxwings so nice to have them just a ten minute drive down the road and local to me had to make the most of them, I got addicted just love them you can hear them as you walk up the road that sound just fills me with joy and warmth, such beautiful amazing birds at the highest count there was 52 but they did start to dwindle down in numbers the last week, I have loved every second of watching them, photographing them has been tricky as every time they land on the berry trees the Mistle Thrush chases them off lol so funny to watch and also lighting is very dark when there in the trees but had some super views and the last day I was there some of the Waxwings came down to a puddle to drink water the first time I had ever seen them on the ground a great feeling to watch them :)
They really have brightened up the past month, felt like crying when they left was so strange when I went to check if they were still there and no sign was to silent without them :(
Hopefully we will have another Waxwing year again soon maybe next year !!! lol


Saturday, 18 February 2017

Glorious Geese - Tundra Bean Geese and Greenland White-fronted Goose

The past couple of weekends have been spent locally with the Tundra Bean Geese still being present on Seeswood Pool Dave's local patch we have spent quite a bit of time there it's not every day you get 4 Tundra Bean Geese just down the road, I have fallen in love with these Geese there so pretty elegant looking, has been a pleasure to get so many lovely views :) Photographing them has been hard work as they do move about from on the water, to the field on the road and the back field, but they did come much closer on a couple of occasions so have managed a few shots :)
Also so had nice views of Egyptian Geese there stunning Geese.

We were also extremely lucky with the Greenland White-fronted Goose at Middleton Lakes at the back of the canal in field, we got there and Dave got straight onto him was quite distant at that point we were getting a few record shots then we walked down a bit then the Geese starting walking up and Dave joked and said now it would bevgood if the Greenland could come as close as the Canada Geese not expecting in a million years it would happen lol but then the Greenland starting walking closer and closer towards us this was just amazing even though a subspecies Greenland White-fronted are very rare Geese so to have one this close and my first ever one was an honour such a lovely Goose and does really stick out love the thick dark barring on his belly :) 

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Little Egret Roost, Bamptons Pool/Old Mill Pool

With news coming through on Twitter from a Tommy D who had 18 Little Egrets in the roost at Old Mill Pool official name Bamptons Pool this was a new West Midlands county record, I had to get down there and see them, so the following night I headed down there I got there far to early there was only one when I got there then six which is when I headed back to the car to change my shoes so that I would be ready to speed of to work, when I got back a Des Jennings was there I said how many he said 13 wow this was already the most I had ever seen there, as we both stood there more and more joined with the final couple coming in when it was almost completely dark, this made the total up to 18 was over the moon to see all 18 of them an amazing feeling, I was so excited a couple of years back when I had one here so to see 18 was overwhelming just astonishing how Little Egret numbers have increased, will be exciting now to see if we get any more than 18 over the next weeks :)
Des Jennings got a nice shot of 10 of 18 little egrets, Thank you to Des for letting me use his photo on my blog :)

Des Jennings photo of 10 of the 18 Little egrets in the Roost 

By Des Jennings

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Iceland Gull and Yellow-legged Gull, Swanshurst Park,Moseley

With news coming through last week of an Iceland Gull at Swanshurst Park which is just around the corner from Trittiford. I decided to head over there on Wednesday afternoon I had been putting it off because didn't feel right going without Dave but he told me not to be silly and go for it.
Think I picked the worst day with lighting as dull as dishwater, but as soon as I got there the Iceland Gull was there really is so striking he was over the other side of the pool and the other birders didn't seem to want to try and get closer but a nice birder let me look through his scope which was lovely and he did come a little closer when he landed on the fields, I was just so happy to see him I love my gulls and so nice to have an Iceland Gull near by and I had nice prolonged views for an hour before it flew off high, hopefully if the weather picks up this weekend Me and Dave will go for it :)
An added bonus was a Yellow-legged Gull, which had been reported as a Caspian but Dave said as soon as he looked at a photo of it that it looks like Yellow-legged Gull and then that was confirmed but the Gull ID page on facebook :)

Juvenile Iceland Gull

Juvenile Iceland Gull

1st Winter Yellow-legged Gull

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Bittern- Ladywalk Nature Reserve 05/02/17

We spent the Weekend locally heading to Ladywalk Nature Reserve in hope of getting views of the Bittern he didn't disappoint we hadn't been there long before he gave lovely flight views, after awhile he landed right in front of the hide in the reed giving lovely views and watching him fish then he walked across the channel giving more lovely views just amazing to watch him and still my fav bird :)

We also went back to Seeswood Pool on the 5th for another look at the Tundra Bean Geese which had been there a week and now as I write this have been there Two weeks today 11/02/17 :)
Just amazing still over the moon that I was with Dave when he found them such an exciting moment :)