BIRDING THE LUNE ESTUARY THE FOREST OF BOWLAND AND BEYOND.......................................................................................................GREY WAGTAIL MARTIN JUMP

Friday, 24 December 2021

The Damp Squid.

A visit to Harrisend Fell then on to Hawthornthwaite, turned out to be something of a damp squid, but as with any birding, not without interest including a first.

It was a bitter disappointment that I struggled to find just one pair of Stonechat at Harrisend, 7 Red Grouse, and a Magpie calling and flying purposefully south across the fellside below the ridge, in itself something unusual and a first 'Moorland Magpie' for me. On Hawthornthwaite, just 18 Red Grouse seen. 

Stonechat Behavior....I had been on Harrisend 1.5 hour, and was on the return leg before I found the pair of Stonechat providing me with a first record. 

The male was atop of a gorse bush, the classic view of an upland Stonechat. The bird soon took to the wing and was seen to be in pursuit of a female, flight was fast and direct until the female changed direction, then soon went to perch, followed by the male going to perch close by her. This was soon followed by the female taking off again, with the male in hot pursuit to repeat a similar pattern, the pair going to perch again.

Having spent 15 minutes watching this pair of Stonechat, during which time this behaviour was repeated at least ten times, covering quite a large area of about 100 square meters, before I left them to it.

I was in touch with John Callion about the Stonechat observations at Harrisend on Tuesday, and he asked if I had any evidence of a third bird involved, in which case the male was seeing off an intruder. In fact I saw no other bird throughout my observations.

In our correspondence, John passed on to me some pretty impressive records, one of which was c.130 nestling Stonechats ringed this year. John added a footnote to this, within 10 miles of his house approx 40 nestlings were colour ringed this year, at least six of the broods successfully fledged, yet no colours on any of the six wintering pairs close to him have been seen....Fascinating.

The other equally impressive record from John, was of 74 Wood Warblers - 13 adult and 61 nestling - colour ringed in the Borrowdale Valley this year....Need to get myself into Cumbria next year.  

In The Garden....A Goldcrest graced our plum tree and conifer yesterday morning.

The counter on B2B reached a viewing count of 2167 views for one post recently. To each and everyone, my little Robin friend 'Bob' and I would like to wish you....

A VERY HAPPY CHRISTMAS   

10 comments:

Richard Pegler said...

I saw a pair of Stonechat behaving a bit like this in the dunes at Gwithian, Cornwall, this year Pete. It was extremely windy and I was late to meet up with the family so I didn't watch them for as long as I'd liked to have done.

We very rarely see Goldcrest in the garden here, but we've been having one on a daily basis for nearly two weeks now - and I still haven't managed to get a half-decent shot of it yet.

Wishing you and KT (and, of course 'Bob') a great Christmas. Stay safe and well in 2022 - - - Richard

Pasión por las aves said...

Feliz Navidad Pete.Un fuerte abrazo amigo,

Pete Woodruff said...

Happy Christmas to you Richard and Lindsey.

Pete Woodruff said...

Feliz Navidad y próspero año nuevo para ti también.
Saludos cordiales Antonio.

shelleynaturalist said...

Merry Christmas Pete! Likewise I am overdue some Wood Warbler action. All the best for 2022 and glad to bump into you the other day. Cheers Steve

Bob Bushell said...

What a number, beautiful Wood Warblers. Season's greetings to you.

Pete Woodruff said...

Yes, 74 Wood Warbler....HEK!

I too was pleased to see you Sunday. Have a Happy Christmas Steve.

Pete Woodruff said...

Likewise with 74 Wood Warbler.

Have a HAPPY CHRISTMAS Bob.

Ana Mínguez Corella said...

Hi Pete...I hope you had a lovely days... I wish you a happy new year...

Stay safe...

Pete Woodruff said...

HAPPY NEW YEAR to you too Ana.