Posts Tagged ‘Bullfinch’

A crisp chilly morning and I was on my way to Norfolk / Suffolk borders with the local RSPB group. Our first stop (apart from a comfort stop) was at Lynford Arboretum in Norfolk. This is a known wintering site for the elusive Hawfinch, the largest of the UK finches. This autumn has seen an eruption from the continent with many more sightings than normal, so hopes were high. As we walked down the track, our attention is drawn to a Common Kestrel in a tree in the adjoining paddocks.

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And then it became clear that there were small birds in the top of an adjacent tree – these turned out to be a flock of Hawfinches. Unfortunately, they are too far for decent photos, but they can easily be identified through telescopes.

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Hawfinch. Photo by Sergey Yeliseev (https://www.flickr.com/photos/yeliseev/)

 

Six birds flew off, going away from us, and another 2 were still in the tree which brought the total seen to 8. I understand that a flock of up to 11 has been counted here in the past month.

Walking on down the path we came to the rear access to Lynford Hall Hotel and someone had put out some seed on one of the posts of the bridge over the stream. This attracted in a lot of woodland birds including Nuthatch, Coal Tit, Blue Tit, Chaffinch and Great Tit.

A Kingfisher was seen travelling back and forth along the stream and as we retraced our stops 2 Hawfinches were seen again in the top of a tree.

Making our way back into Suffolk we stopped at Lackford Lakes, a large complex of lakes adjacent to the River Lark. It is a good site for wintering waterfowl, but like many places in the UK, they don’t seem to have arrived yet in any great numbers, presumably due to the recent mild weather. Still a few have made it like this Drake Goldeneye which fed most of the day in front of Winter hide.

Another nice sighting was a small flock of Bullfinches seen near Paul’s hide

There were also a number of Marsh Tits at different places around the reserve but I couldn’t get any decent photos of them. Other birds seen included Tufted duck, Common Pochard, Eurasian Teal, Robin and Gadwall.

This was my first visit to both these sites and I look forward to visiting again in the future.

Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Common Pochard (Aythya ferina)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Common Goldeneye [sp] (Bucephala clangula)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Sparrowhawk [sp] (Accipiter nisus)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Common Kingfisher [sp] (Alcedo atthis)
Great Spotted Woodpecker [sp] (Dendrocopos major)
European Green Woodpecker [sp] (Picus viridis)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Marsh Tit [sp] (Poecile palustris)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Cetti’s Warbler [sp] (Cettia cetti)
Long-tailed Tit [sp] (Aegithalos caudatus)
Eurasian Nuthatch [sp] (Sitta europaea)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Mistle Thrush [sp] (Turdus viscivorus)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
Common Linnet [sp] (Carduelis cannabina)
Eurasian Bullfinch [sp] (Pyrrhula pyrrhula)
Hawfinch [sp] (Coccothraustes coccothraustes)

Bullfinch

Posted: September 14, 2017 in Birds, Natural History
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Last week I posted some pictures of the Black-Crowned Night Heron which is one of my favourite birds although rarely seen in the UK. So if we are talking about resident birds then one of my favourites has to be the Bullfinch – Bright, attractive and cocky it is now one of the rarest of our resident finches. Once considered a pest species on farms and orchards, there are now only about 200,000 pairs in the whole of the UK and in some areas it has become so rare that it is quite an occasion when you come across them.

Bullfinch (m)

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

 

After seeing the Ospreys Keith and I headed back towards the reserve’s visitor centre. On the way, we saw two Red Legged Partridges on the path ahead of us.

Red-legged Partridge

Back near the centre we met up with Sue, who having completed her craft shopping had scouted out a Treecreeper nest in another part of the reserve, so we headed off in that direction. It took a lot of patience and attempts to some decent photographs of the Treecreepers as they brought food back to the nest – we presume they were feeding young already. They move so fast once they land on the tree – you see them, they are in the nest and then away again. But patience and many attempts paid dividends in the end.

Treecreeper

Treecreeper

Treecreeper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butterflies were prevalent as soon as the sun came out and we recorded at least 5 species with Orange Tip being the most prevalent.

Orange Tip (m)

We also found a pair of Grat Crested Grebes who were displaying

Great Crested Grebe

Great Crested Grebe displaying

Dunnock

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We made our way back to the car and went onto the reserve’s second visitor centre at Eggleton. We only added a couple of species here, most notably our only wading bird of the day – Northern Lapwing. But as we were walking back to the carpark from the centre we added Bullfinch, Song Thrush and Collared Dove to the days list in quick succession.

Bullfinch (m)

And so we started off on the journey home, but the day still wasn’t quite finished as near Norman Cross on the A1 we were treated to the sight of 8 Red Kites in the air together, circling over the road. The recovery of this species once limited to a few birds in West Wales is one of the great conservation successes of the past 20 years.

An excellent end to an excellent day’s birdwatching, with some fantastic photography opportunities.

Red-legged Partridge [sp] (Alectoris rufa)
Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Egyptian Goose (Alopochen aegyptiaca)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Eurasian Teal [sp] (Anas crecca)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Western Osprey [sp] (Pandion haliaetus)
Red Kite [sp] (Milvus milvus)
Common Buzzard [sp] (Buteo buteo)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Rook [sp] (Corvus frugilegus)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Sand Martin [sp] (Riparia riparia)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus)
Eurasian Reed Warbler [sp] (Acrocephalus scirpaceus)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Garden Warbler [sp] (Sylvia borin)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Treecreeper [sp] (Certhia familiaris)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Song Thrush [sp] (Turdus philomelos)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Eurasian Tree Sparrow [sp] (Passer montanus)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Bullfinch [sp] (Pyrrhula pyrrhula)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Unidentified small white spp (Small white / Green-viened white)
Orange Tip (Anthocharis cardamines)
Peacock Butterfly (Inachis io)
Small Tortoiseshell [sp] (Aglais urticae)
Speckled Wood [sp] (Pararge aegeria)

Red-tailed Bumblebee

White-tailed Bumblebee

The bullfinch is one of the most attractive birds and one of my favourites. So it was very exciting to get the opportunity to photograph them at The Wetlands Trust at Washington.

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Pictures from our recent trip to Northumbria

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Avocet

Avocet

White tailed Bumblebee

White-tailed Bumblebee

Greater Spotted Woodpecker

Greater Spotted Woodpecker

Coot

Coot

Sleeping Grey Heron on nest

Sleeping Grey Heron on nest

Some more pictures from our Northumbria trip

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

 

Goldfinch

Goldfinch

 

Great Tit

Great Tit

 

Common Tern

Common Tern

 

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Great Spotted Woodpecker

 

Great Tit

Great Tit

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Our lunch break on the second day of our journey north was at the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust reserve at Washington near Sunderland. This is a wonderful site on the banks of the River Wear.

Our first stop was at the woodland hide where we were treated to a group of male Bullfinches on the feeders and the surrounding trees. There was an occasional sight of  young birds in the tree cover being fed.

Bullfinch (m)

Bullfinch (m)

Joining them were a Great Spotted Woodpecker, Great Tits, Blue Tits, Coal Tit, WillowTit, Greenfinch, Chaffinch and Goldfinch, whilst Robin, Pheasant, Dunnock and Blackbird fed on the ground. Well, all except one young Blackbird who seemed intent on trying to hang on a feeder – without any success.

Great Spotted Woodpecker

Great Spotted Woodpecker

 

Pheasant

Pheasant

From here we passed onto the scrape and saw plenty more evidence of successful breeding. Young Avocets and Lapwings were already feeding independently, whilst on one part of the water there was a school of young Shelduck. Close examination of the islands revealed many hidden Common Tern chicks and Sue pointed out a Little Ringed Plover with chicks.

Common Tern

Common Tern

On a fence we found 3 young Barn Swallows, who seemed unworried by our closeness and only intent on the parent flying into feed them.

Barn Swallow

Barn Swallow

All too soon it was time to head back to the car and recommence our journey but one more treat awaited us. As we passed the Asian Otter enclosure the adults were playing (teaching?) their young in the pool and allowed a great photo opportunity

Asian Short-clawed Otters

Asian Short-clawed Otters

 

Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Little Ringed Plover [sp] (Charadrius dubius)
Common Redshank [sp] (Tringa totanus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Pigeon [sp] (Columba livia)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Great Spotted Woodpecker [sp] (Dendrocopos major)
Willow Tit [sp] (Poecile montanus)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Common House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
Eurasian Bullfinch [sp] (Pyrrhula pyrrhula)

Bullfinch

Posted: May 15, 2015 in Birds, Natural History
Tags:

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Surely one of most attractive of British birds. The Bullfinch is a bird of woodland and can be difficult to locate. It is estimated that there are around 200,000 breeding pairs in the UK.

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

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Pied Avovet

Pied Avovet

The Washington reserve is a group of lakes and woodland located in the River Wear valley between Gateshead and Sunderland in the North East of England.

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Arriving at the reserve I first made my way to the woodland where I am treated to excellent views of Bullfinch and Nuthatch at the feeding station.

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

Bullfinch

From here I moved onto the saline scrape but apart from a few gulls and an Osytercatcher there is little see.

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After Lunch I walked along the side of the main lake which runs alongside the river. My first stop gives me excellent views of a Snipe and two Little Ringed Plovers.

Little Ringed Plover

Little Ringed Plover

Further along the lake I found a group of Common Tern; a party of Redshank; a Black-Tailed Godwit and a group of Avocets.

Common Tern

Common Tern

Common Tern

Common Tern

Avocets

Avocets

An excellent days birdwatching

Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Greylag Goose [sp] (Anser anser)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Mute Swan (Cygnus olor)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Grey Heron [sp] (Ardea cinerea)
Common Kestrel [sp] (Falco tinnunculus)
Common Moorhen [sp] (Gallinula chloropus)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Pied Avocet (Recurvirostra avosetta)
Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)
Little Ringed Plover [sp] (Charadrius dubius)
Common Snipe [sp] (Gallinago gallinago)
Black-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa limosa)
Common Redshank [sp] (Tringa totanus)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Common Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Coal Tit [sp] (Periparus ater)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Common House Martin [sp] (Delichon urbicum)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Eurasian Nuthatch [sp] (Sitta europaea)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
Song Thrush [sp] (Turdus philomelos)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Pied Wagtail (Motacilla alba yarrellii)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)
Eurasian Bullfinch [sp] (Pyrrhula pyrrhula)
Common Reed Bunting [sp] (Emberiza schoeniclus)

Last week I posted that my favourite bird photo of 2014 was the Dipper I photographed in Kendal. On reflection I thought I also had to give a honourable mention to the male Bullfinch that visited our garden feeder at the cottage in Lancashire just because he was stunning and like the Dipper I have never had the opportunity to take so many pictures of this species.

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