Thursday, June 18, 2009

Weelea - weeleooee...

...or something like that. So the books reckon...

This morning Jane had to go to work early so that left me to take Bunty for her walk. We headed into the Village Wood and I wandered around, in the sunshine, in an tired stupor, not taking any particular notice of my surroundings. I was pondering rare butterflies and dragonflies I might see on my upcoming trip to the New Forest.

Then a vaguely familiar sound drifted into my head. Weelea - weeleooee... it went. I stopped and gazed up to where the noise had come from, high in some tall oaks. Weelea - weeleooee... it went again. Now was this some thrush playing silly beggars, after all I was still half asleep. Weelea - weeleooee... Ok, I'm awake. Its grabbed my attention. It couldn't be, could it? Surely in this open wood I would see it fly.

Then, Weelea - weeleooee...in a totally different place, more distant with not a sign of the singer. It had moved further up the wood towards the Hall. I put a stride on and got to the track leading along the eastern edge of the main car park and again heard Weelea - weeleooee... This time the song was much closer, in a huge oak, sheltered and catching the full early rays to warm it up. The bird was singing its Weelea - weeleooee's constantly now, interspersed with some warbler like chattering. After a while a movement high up at the back caught my eye.

A GOLDEN ORIOLE! Oh yes, how often have I dreamt of that one waking me up at home, and now here it is! Not a full adult male, but a singing immature male is just as welcome believe me. Only my second in Northumberland after last years bird at Cambois, so to find it on the patch made it all the more satisfying.

I put the word out and was glad to hear that at least half a dozen good county birders connected with it before it stopped singing at 11am.

It remained typically elusive in these large trees where it looked very small so high up. When silent it would be impossible to locate.

I'll check tomorrow morning for any Weelea - weeleooee - ing and put the word out if its there...

( No photos for this one I'm afraid, the one above is from Slovakia a couple of years back )

13 comments:

Seaside Observers said...

Wow stewart..and on your doorstep too, how lucky are you? bet your glad jane had to go out early now!
We saw 2 cuckoos at the weekend and that was amazing too..Hope you get a repeat show tomorrow morning.

Dean said...

What a bird to get on the patch, Stewart.
Makes you wonder what you`ll get in the autumn.

Birding Sometimes said...

Congratulations Stewart - an incredibly good bird up here in Northumberland!

Emma Anderson said...

Marvellous experience. I always seemed to miss the Natural History Society trip to Holy Island when they saw Golden Oriole.

Alan Tilmouth said...

Cracking find, just goes to show how much must get missed North of Hauxley and South of Bamburgh.

Gavin Haig said...

Very, very nice! Great find.

Ipin said...

monstrous patch tick Sexton! And self-found, do you regret going to cambois now?

I like a county first/self found/ patch bird combo!

I didn't call in today when it hadn't come back on pager, gotta go to Alnwick tomorrow so here's hoping!

Blyth Birder said...

I was struggling to digest a dry, 2 day old scone for breakfast in the office when the pager went off.

Good effort.

The scone, not the Oriole. :)

Les said...

wonderful bird that is.

Newton Stringer said...

A superb patch find Stewart... was one at Newton in the early 90's that my mate saw.... I'd love to get one of these on the patch tho... A top bird, well done !

abbey meadows said...

Great find Stewart. I didn't know about it as I was off yesterday I could have gettin up there. I'm sure Howick has hosted one of those in the past Stew.

Warren Baker said...

I'm just so envious - I can hardly bring myself to make a comment! Bloody well done!!

Stewart said...

Thanks for the applause all :)
It took a lot of skill to be dragged into that wood when a Goldy O was singing !

Nigel - Sorry I didnt contact direct I just assumed you would be at work.

Roppa - No regrets about the Cambois bird it showed much better than this one.

Blyth - Get some jam on that scone...