Out for the New Years day Patch count all meeting up at 9.30 with Graeme bringing his own personal Char Wallah (brother Tony)with him. It was definitely my longest ever walk round as at 11.30 when we are normally approaching the hide we still had not got half way round although the rain which started about midday did make our pace increase somewhat as it was coming down quite heavy by the time we reached the first hide. We could have got round a bit faster if the Char Wallah didn't keep stopping to look after his brother and supply with him with hot tea and nearly a 3 course meal on occasions.
Anyway, the bird count for myself personally was 65 although I did miss out on Greenfinch and Song Thrush which a couple of others did as well. The best birds of the day were the Scaup
which has been around for a few days now although it stays quite distant most of the time
A Peregrine Falcon sent everything scattering as it came quite fast across the lake and only managed a couple of shots just pointing the camera without looking through the viewfinder (I have heard some people say this is how I do it most of the time anyway) but taking into consideration the pouring down rain and the distance at least I was the only one to get an image.
3 Grey Partridge were seen in one of their usual places although it is my first sighting on the patch since I saw a few in May last year
At least 2 Redpoll, possibly 3 were in the feeding station with suspicions of a Mealy being bantered around but the views were not brilliant due to the incessant rain and they stayed hidden behind the feeders. Hopefully Graeme or Alan will look at some of the pics and make a decision. The following is the best I could do from about 12-15m but a bonus bird which is now practically resident there managed to muscle into the shot
We also had 3 GSWoodpeckers in the Feeding Station at the same time but only managed to capture 2 of them together.
Other birds seen but no pictures obtained were 7 Golden Plover, Snipe, Water Rail, Siskin, Meadow Pipit and GBBGull
Over the break on one of my early morning visits I came across this
He was carrying camera with large lens and tripod and as some of you have probably noticed he is just tramping through the Nature Reserve. I did shout at him and he admitted he knew he was in an Out of Bounds area but wanted to take photographs and apologised. I personally watched him climb over 4 fences so how the F**k does an apology compensate for blatantly disobeying signs which tell you it is a Nature Reserve and disturbing over 500 wildfowl which sped off as he came within a few metres of the pond itself (since when have you seen the Big Waters with no Wildfowl on the pond, apart from when the 2 Dickheads in the rubber boat decided to go for a paddle a year ago) .
Finally Happy New Year to all (apart from the Pillock above)