Tuesday, November 13, 2012

On A High!

Next Canadian Trip - Nova Scotia 
Last night Dee and I had finally organised our RV and completed the final details of our next trip to Canada, Nova Scotia to be precise and so I was on a high when I left for Brandon Marsh this morning. Another bonus was the fact that it was my first time out with my new Canon 7D, so I'm now a birder with a decent camera!

It was a very mild morning with the temperature in double figures but unfortunately the early brightness didn't last too long before the cloud set in. The usual route around Brandon had the normal selection of Thrushes, Lesser Redpoll, Siskin, Linnet, Goldfinch and Chaffinch and I have to say that Brandon is currently very well off for Goldcrest at the moment, another 7 recorded during my stay.

The Elusive ♀Smew
At first the ♀Smew (now day 9) was nowhere to be found until a scan of the River Pool from Teal Hide found here skulking right at the back, what a mobile and elusive little thing she is! Later in the morning she was large as life on East Marsh Pool.

While in Big Hide Peter Berrill located a couple of Golden Plover flocks (12 & 70+) over towards Wolston and at least 40 dropped onto East Marsh briefly before making off.

Brandon Waxwing!
Carlton Hide and the screen area were very quiet but on the way back to Big Hide a stop off at the Carlton Overflow Ditch ( an area which the team has recently cleared) things got interesting.

I paused for a while watching and photographing a large Siskin/Redpoll flock enjoying the Alder seed, a tit flock which produced Willow Tit and a good number of Thrushes which had flown in. Among the Thrushes a lone Waxwing, firstly low in the Hawthorn before appearing near the top! Thankfully Martin Durkin had doubled back to see where I was, great timing as the bird was off within minutes!

Lunch in Big Hide after a tour of the reserve produced another surprise when a Chiffchaff firstly calling from the reed bed finally flew out and over towards Teal Pool. The bird was still calling as I passed the large Oak Tree near the River pool Path.

Other notable's seen today: Yellow-legged Gull (3rd winter!), Common Gull (7), Water Rail (2 heard), Buzzard (1), Sparrowhawk (2), Kingfisher (1), Great-spotted Woodpecker (1), Green Woodpecker (1), Jay (3), Song Thrush (1 singing), Treecreeper (1), Coal Tit (1), Cetti's Warbler (2 heard), Meadow Pipit (1 over), Skylark (1 over), Bullfinch (1♂2♀), Pied Wagtail (1), Wigeon (9), Goldeneye (♂2), Lapwing (200+)