Thursday, 26 December 2013

A few surprises today.

 Dropped into the SAFC academy area today for a quick once over as I've not viewed for a while. What a cracking visit this one turned out to be!. First off a canny few Redwings and Fieldfares along the Hawthorn lined western approach path to the ponds, along with lots of dodging of muddy areas by myself...Aye its a mucky trek now. ;-)
This female Goldeneye I thought was the going to be the highlight of this visit here today, which I was over the moon to capture any image of... this bird was flighty to say the least.

And then I wandered back towards Moor lane on the eastern side of the Academy. Large numbers of Meadow pipits (est. 80-100)  around this area which is always a stronghold, but not normally this time of year. Plus this sight here thats not common to say the least these days around the doors.

The spoil heaps to the northern side (by Moor lane) produced maybe the biggest surprise, when a local watcher to this patch informed me of 3 Rock pipits feeding here. Excellent stuff...Viewed well but too far off photo wise.

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Couple of visits this week around the doors.

 A view from Whitburn cliff tops this afternoon, good numbers of Redshank's bracing themselves in the southerly wind. I had 't to admire their stance around the high tide mark on this visit.
 Now this is something I've not came across before. Whilst checking a stretch of the Don today for otter sign I came across this!. There's a spraint maybe a few days old and what looks to me like puke beside it on a regular marking spot on this river. Closer inspection revealed more or less what the spraint next to it  contained, except for more maybe stomach content ;-)....... I do wish I'd getting a better shot, tomorrow for seconds maybe?. Otter sign in another 2 regular spots along this stretch of the Don, roughly about the same ageing wise.Contact the Durham wildlife trust to take part in this years survey regarding otter sign and sightings', its changed my view on rocks etc. along the Don. So rewarding knowing we have these mammals within ST on a regular,permanent basis now.
Shields, Sandhaven rocks earlier this week.

There's no doubting this bird now. :-)  Marsden's very own resident winter Med. gull. returned for many a year.