Thursday, 10 June 2010

Birding Mid-March....

....Well that's what it was like today where I was with JB when we went to check out the mid-breeding season birds at Barbondale, dark heavy clouds and a cold quite strong wind and not a place I would have come to had I known how unpleasant it was....end of weather whinge!

Male Pied Flycatcher Peter Guy.

It was actually quite calm and sheltered from the wind once I entered the path through the first gate soon to discover 'the' pair of Pied Flycatchers are obviously still engaged in a breeding programme here. Other notables in order of finding were, excellent views of a female Green Woodpecker, 6 Willow Warbler mainly heard, a Grey Wagtail, 7 Redstarts which - with the exception of a pair - were three male and two female individuals, a Spotted Flycatcher, 2 Dipper, 2 Common Sandpiper, 2 Buzzard, and a single Wren heard in song. I've been taking particular note of 'tits' at Barbondale this year and have noted their near absence from here, today I saw not a single one and in three previous visits this year so far I have had a total of just eleven sightings which - it goes without saying - doesn't mean eleven birds.

Female Pied Flycatcher. Peter Guy.

We decided my having found two - possibly three - Spotted Flycatchers around the River Wenning below Clapham Station on 20 May that we would go to see if there was any sign of them again today but found just one obliging individual perched and flycatching by the bridge, also noted at least 6 House Martins around the cottage, 4 Grey Wagtails, 3 Goldfinch, and 2 Treecreeper. A Kestrel was noted as we drove over Newby Moor.

Thanks to Peter Guy for two excellent images of two equally excellent Pied Flycatchers.

And finally....

Blackburnian Warbler. Mike Watson.

Another look at this stunning bird not just because of how stunning it really is, but did you know the bird was named after a Mrs Blackburn (1740-1793) who was a botanist and owned a museum at Fairfield in Lancashire, England. She had a brother, Ashton Blackburn, who collected a specimen of the warbler. This woman was never married and had a preference to be called Mrs Blackburn as she thought it gave her more standing and authority....well, you learn something every day don't you!  



Brian Rafferty said...

Pete. Despite the weather you had an excellent day's birding in Barbondale. Enjoyed reading about Mrs Blackburn's Warbler.

Enjoy your weekend.

Pete Woodruff said...

B'dale is a must for our next meeting Brian and yes, Mrs Blackburns warbler....interesting, and some bird.

Warren Baker said...

Your 'titless' visits are reflected here Pete. I have had not a single fledgling on my garden feeders yet. Normally they are queuing up at this time of year!