Posts Tagged ‘Swallow’

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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)

Naturelog: 28th June

Posted: July 8, 2015 in Birds, Natural History, Norfolk, UK
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Whilst visiting the North Norfolk railway Sue spotted a Barn Swallow’s nest in the Station buildings. As we watched the adults come in to feed the young it became evident that they were ready to fledge and then one flew from the nest to to the top of an adjacent building, whilst another tried out its wings and eventually also left the nest.

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This seemed to leave 2 young in the nestand although we had to leave, I am sure it would not be long before they too had left the nest. It was a privalage t see this happening and interesting to see the adults as they landed on nearby objects trying to coax the youngsters to come to them to be fed.

Adult bird sitting on nearby (unused) artificial nest trying to coax young out

Adult bird sitting on nearby (unused) artificial nest trying to coax young out

is it this way out?

is it this way out?

 

 

or this way?

or this way?

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After we had left the railway we went to Weybourne beach in the hope of seeing some sea-duck. A Gannet; a Little Gull and some Sandwich Terns were all good sightings but there were no sea-duck to be seen.

Northern Gannet (Morus bassanus)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Curlew [sp] (Numenius arquata)
Black-headed Gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus)
Little Gull (Hydrocoloeus minutus)
European Herring Gull [sp] (Larus argentatus)
Lesser Black-backed Gull [sp] (Larus fuscus)
Sandwich Tern (Thalasseus sandvicensis)
Stock Dove [sp] (Columba oenas)
Eurasian Collared Dove [sp] (Streptopelia decaocto)
Common Swift [sp] (Apus apus)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Western Jackdaw [sp] (Coloeus monedula)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Greenfinch [sp] (Carduelis chloris)

Off to visit Fingrinhoe Wick today with RSPB group. This is an Essex Wildlife Trust reserve, south east of Colchester, on old quarry workings beside the River Colne. It has a mixture of habitats including the river and its marshes, a lake, woodland and heathland.

The Colne Estuary

The Colne Estuary

Heathland

Heathland

The Lake

The Lake

I had two main targets today – to hear Nightingale (rarely seen) and to photograph Green Hairstreak Butterfly. Both specialities of this reserve. Well it was clear from the outset that the weather was not favourable for the second as it was cold wet and windy and in fact I didn’t see a single butterfly all day long. It didn’t take long however to satisfy the first target as near the Lake hide a male was singing his characteristic song whilst hidden in the undergrowth. By the end of the day I reckon I had probably heard 8-10 singing males in different parts of the reserve and I did see one briefly as it flew into a bush and thenproceeded to sing at me. Whitethroat, Blackcap, Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff were also present. On the River were a small number of waders and some Little Egrets.

Little Egret

Little Egret

Oystercatcher

Oystercatcher

Barn Swallow

Barn Swallow

The highlight of the day was definitely the number and song of the Nightingales as this bird is becoming scarcer in the UK every year and this is on of their remaining strongholds.

Common Pheasant [sp] (Phasianus colchicus)
Canada Goose [sp] (Branta canadensis)
Common Shelduck (Tadorna tadorna)
Mallard [sp] (Anas platyrhynchos)
Northern Shoveler (Anas clypeata)
Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula)
Little Grebe [sp] (Tachybaptus ruficollis)
Great Crested Grebe [sp] (Podiceps cristatus)
Little Egret [sp] (Egretta garzetta)
Great Cormorant [sp] (Phalacrocorax carbo)
Eurasian Coot [sp] (Fulica atra)
Eurasian Oystercatcher [sp] (Haematopus ostralegus)
Bar-tailed Godwit [sp] (Limosa lapponica)
Eurasian Curlew [sp] (Numenius arquata)
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 Tern [sp] (Sterna hirundo)
Common Wood Pigeon [sp] (Columba palumbus)
Eurasian Jay [sp] (Garrulus glandarius)
Eurasian Magpie [sp] (Pica pica)
Carrion Crow [sp] (Corvus corone)
Great Tit [sp] (Parus major)
Eurasian Blue Tit [sp] (Cyanistes caeruleus)
Barn Swallow [sp] (Hirundo rustica)
Willow Warbler [sp] (Phylloscopus trochilus)
Common Chiffchaff [sp] (Phylloscopus collybita)
Eurasian Blackcap [sp] (Sylvia atricapilla)
Common Whitethroat [sp] (Sylvia communis)
Eurasian Wren [sp] (Troglodytes troglodytes)
Common Starling [sp] (Sturnus vulgaris)
Common Blackbird [sp] (Turdus merula)
European Robin [sp] (Erithacus rubecula)
Common Nightingale [sp] (Luscinia megarhynchos)
House Sparrow [sp] (Passer domesticus)
Dunnock [sp] (Prunella modularis)
Common Chaffinch [sp] (Fringilla coelebs)
European Goldfinch [sp] (Carduelis carduelis)