Thursday, 24 February 2011

February 24th 2011

Best day of the year with blue sky’s, whispery cloud and a light breeze with a minimum temperature of 8c last night which brought in 5 species of moth to my trap rising to a lovely 15c by mid-afternoon and being half term soon had Joe Public flocking down to the pond in there droves with there little darlings.
Male and female Pintail out in the centre at 9am till they flew off a couple of hours later were the only new arrivals but there was plenty of activity with first winter male and female Scaup off outlet, 18 Goosander, 18 Goldeneye, 2 Reed Bunting, 140 Redwing, 78 Fieldfare, 2 Raven behind rainbow corner, 11 Buzzard, 2 Sparrowhawk (Bob had another 4 elsewhere), 2 Jay, 8 Long-tailed Tit, 4 Barnacle Geese, 3 Graylag Geese, Great-spotted Woodpecker and Snipe flying in to sewage farm (rangers had flushed 3 while cutting down willow scrub in toft bay early morning).

Scaup by Bob Hazell

Spent a gorgeous 90 minutes minding my own business watching the Brambling which as usual were elusive but eventually found 19 birds among the finch flock. Max had joined me and just as Bob was about to joined us, the hunt turned up and dogs and horses went charging through the set-a-side strip scattering the flock and as they left the many white rumps indicated probably 40 Brambling present.
Now I don’t have an issue with present day hunting though I would prefer they chased pedos and kiddy killers than some skinny doggy look-a-like but alas I flipped when they could not control there hounds and they entered the reservoir flushing anything that could fly (see Shustoke blogspot regarding a dog killing a Mute Swan) Words of a fruity and personal nature were exchanged but at least I was not the only one as a few walkers put there tuppence worth across.

Trespassing Hounds by Bob Hazell

Brimstone Butterfly (inlet) and Peacock (swallow bank) were my first for the year and 10 Dotted Border moths were on the Rangers office wall and Pa Phillips had a Little Egret fly over his Lytham Rd, Rugby garden this morning and probably one of the Long Lawford birds.

Space Station went over at 19:22pm but due to partial cloud cover and the trajectory it did not show for long and out of view by the time it went over Belgium. There are a number of passes coming up over the next few days - all early evening and some should be terrific if the predicted clear nights for the weekend come off.


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