Saturday, 24 December 2011

December 24th 2011

I couldn’t think of a better way to start off the festive season (apart from kicking the s*** out of Santa) than to be flat on ones back down the valley, watching the wonders of the universe spread out above me. After yesterdays rain the sky was crystal clear which gave me my first views of the Comet P/2006 T1 Levy as she enters the Great Square of Pegasus at +8th magnitude and there was plenty of other delights to see including the planets, Venus, Mercury, Saturn, Mars and Jupiter, as well as a few meteorites from the Ursid meteor shower.
With the air still owls were very prominent with 2 Tawny and 2 Barn Owl heard and as the cloud cover came in at dawn then both Barn and Short-eared became active with 3 of each seen. Other birds seen in the valley included Woodcock, Buzzard, 3 Raven, 3 Red-legged Partridge and 6 Bullfinch. Called in on the pond on the way back home with Shelduck, 22 Goosander, first winter Shag and the Pintail hybrid worth mentioning. Garden had 3 Coal Tit plus Raven and 60 Redwing over mid-day.


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