After our visit to the Fish Quay we headed along the coast stopping to look at various spots but the rain and cold meant that when we got out of car we got back in quite quickly. Onto Holywell but as we drew nearer the weather got worse so just a slight diversion and off to Gateshead, stopping for a Latte on the way. We headed to Shibdon first and moved quickly into the hide where we spent a pleasant 30 mins looking at Gulls, 22 Shelduck, several Canada Geese, and a few Mallard and Teal. We actually spent quite a while figuring out the differences between "SeaGulls" and when we should be wishing them Happy Birthday as they changed from 1st to 2nd and to 3rd then 4th if applicable, Sub Adult, Full Adult then when we moved onto race our brains began to throb violently.
We then moved up to Far Pastures, intending to only spend 30mins there then move down to Thornley and finishing at the Derwent. As we pulled in we decided to have another coffee in the car park and whilst John played Mammy I stuck a bit of seed on the rock and immediately we had birds feeding. We had the normal Great, Blue, Coal Tits, Blackbirds, Pheasant but what we had not figured on were 2 Nuthatch and 2 Willow Tits. We were just taking pics from our mobile hide but the rain/sleet was still hissing down.
Coal Tit (nice comparison with Willow Tit - just need a Marsh Tit now (where can I see one ?))
We did pop into the hide for 15 minutes although there was only a handful of Tufted, a couple of Mallards and 3 Canada Geese were playing tag/chase/leave my girlfriend alone or some sort of similar game although when 2 of decided to consumate their marriage it was quite a delicate affair compared to most I have seen as the male was probably cream crackered after all the precoital antics
Just a standard pic of a Canada here, no cheap thrill shots (although they could be available on a small fee basis from a Blog site not too far away)
On our "long" walk back to the car we encountered the 2 Goldcrest that John had seen earlier whilst having a "wander" although we couldn't quite pin them down for a decent pic and this was the best of half a dozen extremely bad ones.