The Easter break came and went, I had 5 days off and it was out from before dawn to dusk. Last Wednesday before work I went over to Kibblesworth/Lamesley area where the sunrise was misty but stunning.
Thursday morning and over the border to Rainton Meadows and after hearing at least 5 Grasshopper Warblers I finally managed to see this little beauty moving round a hedge.
On No 2 a delightful Little Ringed Plover moved around all over the place never staying in the same place for more than a couple of minutes (the shot below is digiscoped as though you hadn't guessed)
Also on view were Common Sandpiper, Coots galore with at least 2 broods around, Shelduck, Lapwing, Grey Heron having altercations with various Gulls and Canada and Greyalgs. Bumped into Andrew Kinghorn and thanks to him was soon onto a Reed Warbler. If your reading this Andrew I hope you heard my shouted instructions on where the Cuckoo was you were searching for across the Bollihope Valley next day.
Several Whitethroats around but had superb views of this one who was singing directly in front of me.
Friday and back down to Rainton with Carole for another wander round with more of the same seen, also a pair of Kestrel and 2 Little Owl and for the second day in a row a Stoat bounded across the road in front of me. Saturday and starting off at Big Waters with yet another great misty sunrise. Got there before 6 and within minutes there was another 5 people there.
Apart from the sunrise the other noteworthy photographic opportunity was of a Sedge Warbler who worked his way round posing for every one of us at one stage or another.
Then over to Bollihope intending to have a look at the quarry but arriving late morning meant the place was already teeming with visitors (Should have taken note what in says in Where to find Birds in the North East. Went for a wander round the moors and valleys instead where we heard our first Cuckoo which called on and off for 20mins. A couple of fleeting glimpses of it shooting between copses down in the valley with at least 4 different groups trying to find it. Red Grouse all over the place with Lapwings, Curlews and Sand Martins galore in and out of their temporary lodgings (whenever I see these it always reminds me a bit of Byker Wall) on the river banks.
Part 2 to follow shortly