November. The trees are almost leafless now, the nights are dark and the area has a quiet wintry feel to it. Still, the past two weeks locally have been quite good really. There have been no rarities but a few birds have been moving through that should cheer up the most brow beaten of local patch watchers
The month opened with a dozen Bramblings under Beech trees along our lane and there were still two Pipistrelles out feeding at dusk.
On the 4th the incongruous sighting of 3 Coal Tits leaving village gardens at dawn and flying off high into the sky and out of sight was a thought provoker while a flock of 6 deep calling Redpolls flying south over head were likely Mealies. 21 Whooper Swans flew low S over our village in the afternoon, adding to the melancholy feel with their soft trumpeting calls.
We had a short visit of 3 miles along to Boulmer on Guy Fawkes where we had some nice viz migging and seawatching with 2 Snow Buntings S, 1 Twite S, 800 Pinkfeet S, 12 Puple Sandpipers, 27+ Bar tailed Godwits, 60+ Knot, 8 Red throated Divers N and 3 S, 1 Great Northern Diver N, 1 ad Little Gull N and a drake Pintail dropped in to the shore Wigeon flock.
The next morning at home viz mig had picked up with 44 Siskin, 11 Redpoll, 1 Twite, 2 Crossbill and 10 Whooper Swans all S. These were just the appetiser as an hour later 2ad and a juv Russian White fronted Goose flew low over our garden nicely lit by the morning sunshine. Only my 2nd record here after a few in the good year for them of 2010. In addition were 750 Pinkfeet S over head too.
Another 2 Mealy Redpoll called loudly overhead on the 7th.
A few local patch walks from home this weekend in quite nice weather, Pre Storm Debi, had 9 Crossbills, 4 Blackcaps, 1 Chiffchaff, 21 Whooper Swans, 300 Pink feet, 1 drake Goosander S, 1 f Long tailed Duck with 4 Goldeneye and 7 Common Scoter at the burn mouth and, saving best til last, 3 Waxwings, 1 with 20 Redwings behind the Cricket Hut then 2 in the Village Hall car park all too briefly before flying off SW. These are my 5th of autumn but all have been in a hurry to move on. Do they know something we dont?
Is it time to start Christmas Shopping I wonder?