Four days of birding, 2 of them spent with Big John made an enjoyable but bloody cold weekend. Twice I went home slightly early to do a blog but by the time I had sifted through pics, filled my not inconsiderable stomach, had a snooze, watched a bit of TV it was time for bed. Had some great moments this weekend from watching Dippers constructing a small pied-a-terre for use when Spring arrives to the bird of the weekend at Big Waters, a solitary Kittiwake, which decided to have a rest then a snooze on the frozen bit of the North side of the pond for a couple of hours. So my first visit to Big Waters in pics follows then I'm off to bed after stuffing myself with a small present from Allan F, thanks a lot the meat was extremely tender and so is the end of my tongue now.
Friday, started off at Big Waters where a new patch tick for the year was had with a pair of Shoveller and the pair of Pintail had also returned.
Also on the walk to the hides 5 Deer were spotted then when I got to the first hide there was absolutely nothing around the island as everything was sheltering out of the bitter East wind. Even in the main hide I didn't do a lot of looking out towards the pond and restricted myself to what certain people call the Photographers windows (cant be referring to me though) as the wind picked up. I concentrated on the Feeding Station and looking over towards the new scrape (thats when I spotted the Shovellers and Pintail). In the Feeding Station the usual suspects were there including 3 GSWoodpeckers, 2 Willow Tits and the Tree Sparrows seemed to be ganging up to keep the other birds away from the seed I had put out.
If you don't clear off I will get some of my Marra's
Two of us now - So Keep Away
Now There is three of us
Clear the Runway - I'm coming in
Ready for any Bugger now !
Now where does that bloody Dunnock thing he's going
The Landlord dosen't seem to have done much to this since
the last occupant left last Summer
Finally at Big Waters a few Reed Bunting where scrabbling around filling their stomachs
I then headed over the river to the Derwent to check on the Dippers again and sure enough I managed to spot 4 of them as well as a couple of Grey Wagtails
A quick trip round the rest of the well know spots in the area produced
A Nuthatch at Far Pastures
A Jay in Thornley