Sunday, December 27, 2015


Time flies at this time of year. Its been nearly two weeks since I posted about the Chiffchaff, so here is a little update of what I have been seeing since then.

On the 19th it was a very mild 15 degrees so the moth trap was put out. I was pleased to catch my earliest ever Hebrew Character as well as a Chestnut. A Red Squirrel dashed across the road at our lane end, the first I've seen here for a little while.

The 23rd brought an early Christmas present when a nice Merlin dashed past me while I walked Bunty. It perched up on a fence a couple of hundred yards away giving good binocular views. This brings the patch year list to a round 150 species.

On 24th a hint of de ja vu came when a Peregrine over flew the exact same flight line as yesterdays Merlin. A Barn Owl hunted for half an hour outside our kitchen window and 2 Bramblings were with 100+ Chaffinches in the rectory stubble field.

No white Christmas this year though and on the big day only a lone Siskin and 8 Pink feet flying south made it into the notebook.

Last night while returning home from visiting the 24 hour long rain deluge had finally stopped leaving us with seriously flooded roads. No sooner had the rain abated the owls came out, with a nice Long eared Owl sitting on a hedge lit by the car headlights, then a Barn Owl near home sitting the same way.

Thats us up to date. Today I popped out to see John at Warkworth for a wander around the estuary area. Apart from the usual crack, it was uneventful bird-wise until a group of 19+ Twite flew in to the salt marsh. This was a regular traditional site for them some years ago but now they seem to prefer the Druridge Bay links.

Back home, 20 Siskins and a Lesser Redpoll fed in alders, while 7 Stock Doves were with other birds in the rectory stubble, but there was no trace of the Bramblings...

Twite creeping through the grass like mice...
Lesser Redpoll
150. Merlin

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