Bittern

It must be about four years now that I have been visiting the cresswell area,and in all that time when the bittern was there I always seem to miss it,but this week I was in luck,I was told by a photographer friend he is still in the area,if only we were about half an hour sooner we would have seen the bittern right next to wall nearest to the parking area.Not to though,We did get some great views of him flying in from a reed bed about a hundred yards up the road.He was also giving us some great views  preening him self right next to the reeds at a distance but great to see.



These shots were taken from a fare distance,lets hope we get closer views in the future.a visit to the coast next to cresswell got use to see at least 200 common scoter,8 Red-throated divers.Newbigin Showed us 5 red-throated divers and three med-gulls.

back to cresswell

I don't know what it is, but I'm always drawn to the cresswell area of Northumberland to do my bird watching,there is a good feel about the place,its always still and calm as is the Druridge area .plus if there is any body in the hide you always get a good bit crack.as we did this weekend, popped  into Queen Elizabeth park first to see what was there.Plenty Canada, geese greylag,moorhen,coot,mute swan,tufted duck,and wigeon.


                                                 love to see geese flying into land on the lake.


                                                         Nice to get close to the wigeon.

Onto Linton pools,another area I love to visit,lots of female bullfinch,not one male,a few juvenile goldfinch blackbirds,but no redwing or fieldfare,sill plenty of time to see these over the winter.At the front of the hide we got some good views of mute swans in the still waters of the lake.

 
                                                                   The so graceful  swan.

Cresswell was as it always,plenty to see,we didn't spend to much time there as the light is so short at this time of the year and we try to pack as much into the day as we can.but what we did see was worth the visit,I counted 26 snipe,that is the most I've see at one time.dunlin,teal,wigeon 5 whooper swan on the fare bank maganser,lapwing,redshank,and a lot more.


                                                                    A nice little wren

See this lovely little bird on the way into Druridge pools, I'm afraid that all we got to see there apart from one heron and half a dozen tufted duck.



                                                                 The Hauley rat

This big bugga was at the small hide at hauxley reserve,we went into a few hides but all was very still,nothing to see as the light was well gone,next time we must visit hauxley first.

THREE WEEKS IN A ROW.

Its unheard of me out three weeks in a row,work has been unbelievably buzzy,one of the reasons iv not been bloging so I do apologise for that.My first week spent a day with my mate Jeremy at Washington WWT.It makes a change seeing birds you will not get to see on your normal patch.plus weather was crap, Jeremy only gets out one day a month,work is a mare with your social life,I was imprest with the cranes they have there, wicked burgers they are,told not to get to close.this one was giving me the eye,any closer mate and i will have you.
 


I must admit there was a lot more species there than I thought there would be plus a lot more than iv not  see before.I don't want to fill this page with to many here's just a few.


                                                                FEMALE SMEW


                                                          AMERICAN WOOD DUCK

    
                                                                 MANDARIN


                                                             RUDDY SHELDUCK


                                                              BEWICK'S SWAN


This is a short video of the female smew,the first time I've used this video on my d300s camera.hope to improve my shooting with more interesting subjects.


                                                                 HOODED MAGANSER


                                                                  PINK FLAMINGO 


visit to the feed station gave use some good views of a male bullfinch,great spotted woodpecker, nuthatch, Cole tit,goldcrest just a short glimpse of the goldcrest.no chance of a photo though to blinking fast.

                                                            
                                                HOW HEAVY IS THIS COLE TIT 
                                                  HE'S SNAPPED THE BRANCH      

My second week out was at cresswell,nothing out of the ordinary apart from the bittern which I've still not seen,sat in the hide for about three hours but he did not show.But we did get to see the marsh harrier being mobbed by crows and buzzards they put on a pretty good show. I did get a few shots of of a nice little stoat,on the way into cresswell. 

                      
                                                                          STOAT 

Last week newbiggin to see if we can see the med gulls,

(LOST BLOGGER) WITH ON CAMERA WHAT TO DO.

The last time I was out with my camera it was disastrous,We were having a brill day at the coast near howick taking shots of sandwich terns diving into a cut of pool.with camera on tripod thinking it was safe,when a gust of wind blew over tripod,hitting the deck with a gut retching smack,(sh--).Its not three weeks since I got my 500 lens back from repair.Just been told by Nikon casing is cracked and beyond repair.Am I gland its insured, hopefully it will be replaced with a new one.

This is the last shot I took with my D300.

The only thing I could do now is borrow the D70 I sold to my mate.so thanks for that Sean.With the kids six weeks holidays coming to a end, I promised my grandson Cole that I would take him camping for a night in Scotland.Here is a few photos Cole took on his camping trip.
                                                                the start of his trip
                                             driving through Bonchester bridge.

                                             driving through the historic town of Hawick

After we drove through Hawick we had to find a place to camp,I was going to camp near Alemoor reservoir but the road leading to it was blocked of,we ended up at a very nice spot at Craik forest.


This is the first photo of a bird Cole has taken,what do you think,not dad as he is only ten,he love the camera
but I am having a problem to get him birding,give it a few years and I will have him hooked.

here one of a dragon fly,not a bad shot,not sure what species this one is,any help would be appreciated.

I MUST APOLOGISE FOR NOT BOGGING,BUT WITHOUT MY TRUSTED CAMERA I HAVE BEEN LOST THESE PAST FEW WEEKS,ON THE BIRDING SIDE , THINGS HAS BEEN VERY SLOW FOR ME,WORK GETTING IN THE WAY OF THINGS AGAIN.I DID GET TO SEE THE SPOTTED RED SHANK,AND THE WHISKERED TERN AT SALTHOLME,TWO MORE TICKS FOR ME.I HOPE TO GET OUT AND ABOUT SOON,ALL THE BEST,

TO THE FARNES WE GO.

Yes we got there in the end.After being disappointed last week.The trip across to the island was a bit hairy,but well worth it. There was only seven people on the boat that took us across giving us plenty of room to photograph what ever we wanted.The first thing that caught my eye was a gannet flying past pretty  low.
This is the first time iv see the gannet at such a close distance,what a bird impressive to say the least.I was surprise there was only about a dozen seals  around the islands,they did show up but at a distance,they to

are a wonderful creature to see on our shores.
On to the island to see the tern's,and puffins,this is the second  time for me on inner farne island,the first time we were bombarded by the Arctic tern's,this time not a single bird made any attempt to put holes in my head
for what reason I don't know,if anybody has the answer I would love to know.There was one that I did notice was that the terns didn't seem as agitated as the last time we were there,could this be that they are getting more used to the public around them,who knows,that another answer  that needs answering.  


The puffin must be every body's favourite sea bird,I know it is mine,they must be one of the most colourful sea birds around.The best thing about the island you get to see the puffins and the terns at such close quarters.



Here is some shots of the other bird life on the island.


The shag with young.


Arctic tern chick.


Razorbill..


herring gull.

After our trip on the island we headed of to Hauxley to see if there was any thing about,we were in luck and got some good views of a curlew sandpiper on the reserve,a good day by all,looking forward to my next trip out and about.

PRESTWICK CARR HAS A LOT TO OFFER

I spent most of the weekend at the Carr hoping to see the tawny owl,but as luck has it he did not show.

But I did get to see the whitethroat,this was a first for me and get a photo of this cracking bird was a bonus for me.that was on Saturday,when I was there I met city birder for the fist time,I am glad I did for he put me in the right direction to see the whitethroat,I thank him for that.
Sunday was a cracking day,the barn owl was out hunting for a good half hour,the views we got of him were the best I have had in a long while.


To see the goshawk

This weekend was supposed to be a camping weekend,But like every bank holiday it was to bloody cold to lie under the stars.Never mind it gives me some time to do a spot of birding.So off to the Scottish borders it is.There is a little place we go not to far from Roberton,I am sorry I cannot disclose were because I my mates would throttle me,we re- visited the nest of a  goshawks we saw last year.(photo above).Not sure if we would be in luck as we were not sure if the goshawk use the same nest from previous years,one of the lads seen a male goshawk fly from the tree the nest was in last year, here's hoping he finds a female and do as well as they did last year,two chicks they reared.(photo below).


 As far as we know only one chick survived,on a re-visit to the nest four weeks after this photo was taken
we only saw one chick next to the nest roosting,what a size after only four weeks.(photo below)

One thing I love about birding is you never know what you will see,next to a small lock in a row of willow tree was a least eight willow warblers,not one of them was bothered about me being there.so I got a few shots before they moved on.
 


Being on the borders of Scotland you get to see a fare few roe deer,this one was showing of his territory.
 
I will be going back to visit the goshawk in a few weeks time,If I have any luck I will keep you posted,all who read my blog enjoy your birding.

BLACK GROUSE ON THE LEK


The red grouse is at it best,a trip down to Teesdale was not a wasted journey,to see the red grouse with there best togs on was a treat for me and my mates.

 This male was giving us the best display we could ask for,not at all bothered about us been there.

But the highlight of the day was seeing the black grouse on the lek.there were 9 in total,there was 18 on the same lek last year.they were at a great distance so the photo's have been blown up considerately.





The great white egret gives the run around.

This sanderling was enjoying the midday sun at newbiggin,well what sun there was on Saturday,

These ones were keeping a good eye on us,you can only get so close to the sanderling then one foot to close and there off.

Perfectly balanced on one leg,they to are enjoying the sun.

Onto Cresswell as we here the great white egret is hanging around,not here I am afraid was the cry,try looking at Druridge pools,getting to the pools was the problem,water water every were it get in your boots it gets in your hair, that's if you have any.(check my photo)alas it gives us the slip again.hauxley is our next stop you never know your luck.It's been a while since we had any crack with brain in the main hide so the visit is worth it. Now the hide is open until 5 o'clock you get a better chance to see things.Plenty here but no great white egret,one chap came into the hide and gave use good news,he was looking at the great white down at
warkworth lane pond.it was at a distance from the lane but worth a look.Off we went to see if our luck will hold out,and guess what it bloody well did,it was at a distance but what a bird,we viewed it for about while then off it took,what a sight seeing this bird in flight,I just managed to take a shot of it as it flew overhead,not a sharp shot but who cares.seeing the great white was our goal.


WILD FLOWERS

All wild flowers were taken over the past year,most of them in the Northumberland area.

RED CLOVER

RED CLOVER

WATER AVENS

WATER AVENS

COMMON SPOTTED ORCHID

COMMON SPOTTED ORCHID

NORTHERN MARSH ORCHID

NORTHERN MARSH ORCHID

PYRENEAN LILY

PYRENEAN LILY

MONKEYFLOWER

MONKEYFLOWER

PRIMROSE

PRIMROSE

SPEAR THISTLE

SPEAR THISTLE

WILD TEASEL

WILD TEASEL

SEA CAMPION

SEA CAMPION

MEADOW CRANE'S BILL

MEADOW CRANE'S BILL

COMMON RAGWORT

COMMON RAGWORT

A small collection of photos of our local birds

Most of these birds were photographed in the north east area.

SWALLOW

SWALLOW

MALE SISKIN

MALE SISKIN

FEMALE SISKIN

FEMALE SISKIN

MEADOW PIPIT

MEADOW PIPIT

REDPOLL

REDPOLL

SEDGE WARBLER

SEDGE WARBLER

GREEFINCH

GREEFINCH

TREE SPARROW

TREE SPARROW

YELLOWHAMMER

YELLOWHAMMER

CHIFFCHAFF

CHIFFCHAFF

LONG-TAILED TIT

LONG-TAILED TIT

WHEATEAR

WHEATEAR

Nuthatch

Nuthatch

Dunnock

Dunnock

Blue tit

Blue tit

Wren

Wren

Heron

Heron

the glossy ibis

my fist sighting of the glossy ibis was a good one, there it was right in front of the window,there was at least 15 people taking shots of it,must be the most photographed bird in the north east
and rightly so.

glossy ibis

glossy ibis

birds of pray

most of these birds were photographed in captivity,the ones with out names are not identified as yet.

peregrine
red kite

golden eagle

SPARROWHAWK

TAKEN AT BIGWATERS

GOSHAWK

This bird was taken in on the borders of Scotland,

SCREECH OWL

SCREECH OWL

let me out

let me out

snowy owl

snowy owl

TRIP TO THE INNER FARNE

All photos were taken on the Inner farne Island on July of this year,this was my second trip to the Islands the first being to Staple Island last year.