Friday, 6 December 2019

A Morning Out

Last Sunday morning was spent having a wander around Rodley Nature Reserve. It was a beautiful frosty, sunny morning and fairly quiet too.





Dunnock in the haze





We were lucky to spot a Water Rail from the Willow Path Hide, it popped out briefly in full view but we were able to watch it walk along the edge of the reeds for a while.

(grey blob in the middle of the photo)


Elsewhere on the water we saw Teal, Gadwall, Common and Black-headed Gulls, Goosander, Little Grebe and briefly a Kingfisher. 

Gadwall


Black-headed Gull


Smaller birds included Blue, Great Tits, Goldfinch, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Bullfinch, Linnet, Wren, Dunnock. 

Great Tit


Chaffinch


Linnets




On the walk up to the managers garden the trees were full of Crows and Jackdaws. This one had a lot of white on it's wings, you can just see on the underneath of them.


We spotted this tiny fungus when a Robin perched on the wood flew off as we approached, the tiniest perfectly formed little mushrooms! You can just see two under the larger one, the larger one being not much bigger than the top part of my finger!


After warming up with tea and Bakewell tarts provided by the lovely volunteers we made a slow walk back to the car. 






Friday, 8 November 2019

On the Patch

In lieu of me not being out and about much recently I've been taking great pleasure in the garden birds, of which we have many at the moment!

In fact just yesterday morning we had a Blackcap hopping around the bushes (in the pouring rain) - this is not a bird we see in the garden very often. We even had 3 Redwing land in the Laburnum one morning.

With the shorter days the birds are out as soon as it gets daylight and the garden seems busy all day long. Though the shorter days do mean I only see the garden briefly in daylight during the week! The Hedgehogs are still out and about feeding on everything they can find, especially the smaller ones, which are out until after dawn and then back again before sunset. Surprisingly the Squirrels aren't visiting as frequently as they used to though when they do they bury nuts all over the gardens and one has a habit of just throwing one of the sunflower heart feeders on the floor!

The larger birds can be quite flappy - especially the Feral Pigeons which have finally found our garden after all these years and they often spook all the birds. This usually means they all fly about madly for a bit and end up sat on any nearby bush/tree/fence/stick......! These are a few i've caught through the window.

Robin


Wren



Great Tit


Collared Dove



Starling - it point blank refused to turn around....


Early October and I spotted this Shield Bug on a pair of (really old, cat scratched) flip flops!


The Sparrowhawk is around often and finally caught one of my Starlings


One of the Feral Pigeons, we have up to 7 sometimes but they're pretty flighty so they don't take all the food


Greenfinch & Goldfinch



House Sparrow waiting for it's turn at the window feeder


Autumn seemed to come really quick, I took these photos a couple of weeks ago but now lots of the trees are bare already.









Finally we've had a mouse in our window feeder again, it takes it's turn with the Sparrows, who queue up on the branches waiting till it's done! 




Sunday, 20 October 2019

St Aidan's

We had a couple of hours at S Aidan's last weekend, luckily we were able to pick a time when it wasn't raining - a rare thing a the moment! I'm still busy with work, which is just exhausting plus fighting a cold so we weren't out as long as i'd hoped but I was glad of the fresh air!




It turned out to be quite a nice day and got warmer as we walked. We even spotted this fresh looking Painted Lady by one of the lakes.







Quite a few Starlings were flying over the hillside, smaller groups kept joining up and then breaking away again, every now and then they'd land but not for long. 


Lots of noisy Greylag and Canada Geese too and 5 Red-legged Partridge on the same hillside, too far for a photo though.




This Whooper Swan was preening itself in the sun, I found out it's a resident due to having something wrong with it's wings, it can fly but not far, there are worse places it could stay though.........



We were just commenting on the lack of Gulls when all of a sudden they came flying in from all directions, landing on the water and the fences.


The Causeway was flooded, not that it bothered some, we watched one guy take off his shoes & socks, roll up his trousers and wade across!


We saw a few Linnets and Stonechat, Lapwing, Kestrels, Buzzard and lots of Shovelers amongst others. A good afternoon.