Saturday off for a day out again with the Beloved. But first this lovely shot of a Blue Tit that I took at work during the week.
Anyway off to Allen Banks for a nice walk, in Newcastle it was absolutely hissing down but further West it was cold but a lot drier with just an odd drop of rain. Some early lambs were frolicking around but before I could get the camera on them along came the farmer and down went the bucket which they kept swopping over feeding from every few seconds.
After a couple of hours wandering around with the glimpse of a Tree Creeper, loads of Great and Blue Tits, the odd Mallard we then headed off North. As we were driving along Carole shouted and I pulled over as soon as possible. She said she saw a fast moving bird then feathers flying everywhere. About 20m behind us in a field was the Sparrowhawk riving away at what looks like a Wood Pigeon. It picked it up at least 3 times and tried to fly off but only managed a couple of metres each time. Sat and watched it tear away for about 15 mins ignoring the Corvids that were flying overhead occassionally dropping down close
Quite few miles further on yet another shout from Carole and when I pulled over she said I had run over a bird. Turned around quickly and as I made my way back I could see a bird in the middle of the other side of the road and the first 2 cars I had seen in 20mins driving also went straight over it. Got out and walked up to it expecting it to be wiped out and it walked off to the other side of the road. I realised immediately it was a Crossbill and remembered seeing one last year on a road also. Got out a bit of seed and dumped it by the side of the road and walked round forcing it to go to the side of the road where it walked into the seed then flew off, did a couple of circles then landed on a conifer and walked along the branch. It seemed quite happy so we watched it for a little while then drove on and went for another walk. First birds we saw were a pair of Crossbills sitting way up on top of a conifer. Thanks to Carole who took these pictures whilst I was trying to get it off the road.
After a 2 hour walk through the snow we decided it was time for a hot meal so off we went stopping at a hostelry not too far from home for a Big Mixed Grill. Absolutely great day out, not a great amount seen but the scenery in Northumberland is amazing specially when there is snow around.