Sunday, November 08, 2015

Tits 'n' Tongues....

Can't beat a bit of old fashioned sitcom innuendo!

That's enough of that.

This morning I met John at Warkworth Top Car Park at 07.30. A stroll around in the half light was quiet with no thrushes or anything in the scrub. Viz migging was almost non existent too, so the morning didn't seem to be going too well. That is until we were chatting about the latest poor customer care from EE Broadband that John has been suffering from( all providers must be the same because BT is absolutely dreadful too when it comes to customer service).

In mid chat, I heard a very distinctive call across the salt marsh in the reed bed - Bearded Tit! Now Bearded Tit is a rare bird in Northumberland mainly because the habitat is very scarce too. My last were at East Chevington a good few years back so this one set the pulse racing.

We scanned the edge of the phrag without luck but the call continued, then all of a sudden John got onto it, a beautiful male sitting out in the open. What a cracking bird to brighten up the gloom. We watched it for a bout 10 minutes as it flew around even venturing across the open and doubling back at one point. A real highlight on this patch this year.

 
Male Bearded Tit, Old Water reedbed. 


After some tea, we headed down the north side towards the pier. Here a male Snow Bunting flew N low overhead, calling, while well over 600 Golden Plover were on the estuary.

On the way back through the dunes I was pleased to find lots of fungi, including three new species for me - 

Dune Waxcap, Black Earth Tongue and Rosy Bonnet. The latter is a woodland species mainly I believe, but some species occur in various old habitats.

Dune Waxcap

Black Earth Tongue Geoglossum cookeanum

Rosy Bonnet Mycena rosea Note the white tapering stem differs from Lilac Bonnet.
As the rain increased by 11.15 we decided to call it a day. I hope we get some nice fine winter days, I really hate this dark stuff...

7 comments:

David Turner said...

What a great bird to have on your own patch. I doubt we will ever get one up here on the North York Moors or the Yorkshire Wolds but you never know! It seems to have been a good year for 'Beardies' though as they have been spotted in a few unusual corners of the East Riding throughout this autumn.

Wonderful Waxcaps too, such extraordinary organisms.

Wilma said...

Titilating title! ;-) Would love to see a bearded tit, but they don't live on this side of the pond. Beautiful shot of the dune waxcap.

Stewart said...

David - Thanks for that, I've just checked your blog, its excellent, love the look of it!

Wilma - I hope the title isnt too offensive! I will be making my first trip 'across the pond' next year to visit Magee Marsh Ohio, and North Michigan. I cant wait...

Ragged Robin said...

Great news about the Bearded Tit - its one of my "bogey" birds. Never seen not even at Leighton Moss or Norfolk :( There's been a sighting recently at Brandon Marsh - one of the reserves I occasionally visit which is good news as we don't get that many sightings locally. Love the toadstools again too :)

Stewart said...

Hi Caroline, Beardies are a rare bird in Northumberland, but getting commoner. At one time we hardly had any reed beds but now there at least 6 or 7 nice stands of phragmites to attract them along the coastal strip. I hadn't seen one for ages so this spanker of a male was well appreciated!

abbey meadows said...

A good bird on the local patch which is what visiting a regular area is all about. I've heard there are a few at East Chevington at the moment. Like the fungi shots. Some of the above grow in the woods at Morpeth but Hadston dunes was always a good spot for Dune Waxcap.

Northumbrian Birding said...

Those earths tongues fascinated me ,had a look at the weekend with no luck heavy rains and time must have took there toll ,