Sunday, 11 December 2016

The autumn that's still giving...

Yesterday morning saw me and my uncle heading down to Beeley in Derbyshire to try and see the Dusky Thrush which as been hanging around there. We arrived before it was light and started to wait for the bird to appear...

At around 08:20 the first-winter DUSKY THRUSH returned to feed on the apples in the 'orchard'. Through the heads I was able to get some good scope views before it flew off. It was just after twelve when we eventually saw the bird again. Some brief but really good views of it in the orchard again before it flew to the fields over the back where it showed for a couple of minutes sat in the tops of trees. Other birds seen included a Peregrine and a couple of Ravens nearby, while Tawny Owls were calling from the woods.

From here we decided to head east to Welwick Saltmarsh in East Yorkshire for hopefully my second lifer of the day. Within just a couple of minutes of getting out of the car we had seen a Short-eared Owl chasing a male Marsh Harrier and then our target - the juvenile Pallid Harrier. We were treated to a number of awesome flybys from the Harrier over the next hour or so, while another Short-eared Owl appeared along with another Marsh Harrier. At least three Water Pipits were also flying around, though I suspect there was more. Sadly getting good photos was impossbile in the fading light.

A great end to a brilliant day - one we'll remember for a long time! Surely there can't be any more surprises before the end of the year..?

DUSKY THRUSH - © S. Clifton
The poor videograb I managed!

Pallid Harrier record shots - chasing a Short-eared Owl in the last two!

Pallid Harrier

1 comment:

  1. Some good sightings then. Hope you giving yourself plenty of time for your long year end report as I look forward to that. :-)
    Harriers are probably my favourite species of bird and an adult male Pallid Harrier gave me one of my most exciting natural encounters, although not in the UK. I must write about it on my blog sometime. Cheers.