Monday, 29 February 2016

Merlin monday

Had a merlin fly over road outside pockerley buildings it then perched at top of tree which gave great views for a few minutes before it flew off.

No crossbill at ousbrough

No peregrine over beamish

2buzzards 1 feildfare  and 20 lapwings near coppy wood

Plenty of greenfinch and collared dove around beamish hall.

2 short eared owl at burdon with 100 golden plover in fields.

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Peregrine,siskin,merlin but no crossbills

46 species today highlighrs were peregrine ,curlew, red legged partridge, siskin merlin tree sparrow dipper.

Yellowhammer
Bullfinch
Siskin
Goldfinch
Greenfinch
Chaffinch
Grey wagtail
Pied wagtail
Tree sparrow
House sparrow
Robin
Dipper
Redwing
Song thrush
Blackbird
Starling
Nuthatch
Goldcrest
Wren
Skylark
Coal tit
Long taile& tit
Willow tit
Great tit
Blue tit
Crow
Rook
Jay
Magpie
Jackdaw
Great woodpecker
Wood pigeon
Feral
H gull
Bh gull
Curlew
Peregrine
Merlin
Kestrel
Sparrowhawk
Buzzard
Red legged partridge
Pheasant
Mallard

Friday, 26 February 2016

Crossbill walk.


 36 species seen.


Hopped on a bus to stanley from sunniside then had to walk along the consett and sunderland to ousbrough good number of house sparrow at kip hill, with the usual birds along the path, after around 45mins arrived at ousbrough woods goldcrest were amongst the holly, robins were calling ,wrens were angry at my presence, gs woodys were drumming and calling.along the river were 2 dippers.as I climbed up the steps to ousbrough hill great tits, long tailed and blue tits were busying themselves looking for food whilst chaffinches called.this was the area I heard the marsh tit a few weeks back so when I got to the top of the hill I stopped and pondered maybe going back on myself but on the lower path, it was then I heard the cracking of pine cones above which I initially thought was squirrel but staring up I didnt see any squirrel but something was making a noise.after a few minutes I looked up through my binos scanning the tops of the trees and eventually I picked up a  common crossbill.bonus. I stayed around for a good 3/4 of an hr as it fed then I would lose it then find it again, I can understand why there so hard to find but im glad I now know that they visit ousbrough so ill definitely be keeping an eye out I the future. Anyway carried on past the beech trees and took a left then got back onto the footpath which takes you along the river not much showing I was hoping for siskin or redpoll in the alders ,but just the usual ,although there were 2 willow tit, and what could have been a merlin flyby up near the ford the best was a few redwing mistle thrush and starling feeding in the field. And so I slowly made my way back the way I came it was nice to see the crossbill in the same area on the way back feeding. I eventually got out the woods and onto a small road which took me past the beamish entrance and eventually onto beamish golf course which I crossed to get to carricks hill wood, with nuthatch song thrush being the best birds....a good number of beech tress are in the east side of this wood. Anyway eventually got back to bus stop after walking up a small path to mole hill farm where yellow hammers and mistle thrush were, the area looked good for owls. But what wasnt good was a 30minute wait for a bus.


above pics along consett &sunderlamd footpath







carricks hill wood

carricks hill wood

looking north from south causey farm
tried to get a record video however with where it was and light pretty much made it impossible.just about see its tail

Sunday, 21 February 2016

Walk

Species for today

Red kite
Buzzard
Grey partridge
Pheasant
Lapwing
Woodcock
Herring gull
Black headed gull
Wood pigeon
Great spotted woodpecker
Skylark
Grey wagtail
Robin
Blackbird
Fieldfare
Redwing
Song thrush
Long tailed tit
Willow tit
Coal tit
Blue tit
Great tit
Jay
Magpie
Jackdaw
Crow
Starling
House sparrow
Chaffinch
Brambling
Greenfinch
Linnet
Bullfinch
Yellowhammer
Reed bunting

Sunday, 14 February 2016

marley hill-Causey-beamish-ousbrough-urpeth-kibblesworth

To cut a long story short 9hrs were spent looking for birds.overall would have been a disappointing day if it wasnt for 9brambling in usual place 2siskin near high forge, hearing marsh tit ousbrough, and 5 lesser redpolls in alders at kibblesworth brickpools. Also a good 8+dippers along the river and a few grey watails....being sunday had the usual dog walkers around beamish ousbrough but not too many and the weather didnt help with lots of snow/sleet throughout the day. But enjoyable non the less.

Species seen 51.
Beamish burn

Near flint mill

Old building

Ousbrough


Escomb

Near urpeth

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Bramblings @NZ1956

Approached the area on foot from the road which runs through causey arch after saying hello to dipper and grey wagtail ,and seeing 2 people climbing the rock face....checked out the alders at the "bendy road" which every now and then produce siskin and lesser redpoll, the latter I have yet to see in that area(these pulls keep bringing me back)....this road which goes past beckley farm dosent seem bird friendly,and in comparison to the nearby area of overgrown fields,thick hedges, and woodlands.this road is somewhat depressing with its ploughed fields, cut back hedges with empty red bull cans as decorations. The only thing it has is an elevated view of the surrounding area,not completely devoid of birds there were crows,jackdaws, pigeons even a red kite flew over but little else ,but this road was todays alternative route to see if I could get better views of the bramblings, as usually the way I approach leaves me open wide with a good chance of the birds seeing me and flying high even before I get near. So today this is what I did and although it added a few miles walking it paid off!!!! Leaving the road just after beckley farm I travelled north along a ploughed field then came to a field that had been left to grow, immediately a group of 60+linnet flew up from the field obviously agitated at my presence circled the field then dropped back down, also around 7 skylark followed. I scanned the group then (a must) scanned the hedgerows immediately picking up 3 brambling
Hanging with chaffinches ,reed bunting and some yellowhammers. To me brambling behave like tree sparrows they like to chill whilst other birds around them are hyper.dosent mean there easy to spot, in fact far from it , to close or any sudden movements and their off , and with such a hard to find bird I couldnt afford to do this. Watching this area I noticed a small group of birds rise up out of the grass this time chaffinches and within this group another 2 brambling easily spotted by there white rump as t)ey change direction in flight.I slowly made my watch down to where I originally 1st spotted the brambling and as I approach the stile again 3 brambling were high up in the hedge with 2 yellow hammers these 3 gave great views as I was pretty much hidden by my surroundings I watch them for a good 15mins the contrast between the orange and white on chest and belly is beautiful and yellow beak stands out more than you would expect.......I also added a feeder to the area the day before and it great tits,blue t8ts, chaffinch and bullfinch have already found and almost emptied the mixed seed, luckily I had my bag with some seed so I topped it up... soon after it got real cold and started to snow I because I had been stationary for a long time I was freezing. The birds had disappeared and thought I should make my way home.....

I regret not having a fancy camera I could have gotten some great picks of the brambling, all I have is a handycam which hasnt got the zoom power .as you can tell from the video.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Brambling on patch.

Got to an area I dont really visit much and as it has been a month since my last visit I decided to go see if maybe I could get some kind of water bird at the small pond  near wheatleys gill. Got there to the sound of yellowhammer chaffinch blue tits willow tits this area is good for these birds so I slowly walk down to the pond in the hope something will be on it, when I got close 2mallard burst up into the air....whoops...anyway as the circled over I thought id best clear the area so I headed to the stile through a very wet marshy section and yes left leg went under knee deep and wellie started to fill so I quickli pulled my leg got to dry firm ground took my wellie and sock off and began to squeeze my socks dry at this point standing with 1welllie and sock I noticed alot of birds flying up from the gorse area in front of me and joining other birds in the hedge, sounds of chaffinch, reed bunting were the 1st signs to what they were then that nasal weeze and yes greenfinch a rarity for this area so I started to count them to which there were 5, ,then 2 other birds were perched I checked only bloomin brambling,after a few minutes they flew up to a tree top, so I slowly edged forward then 3 other birds caught my attention again perched in a small tree 3more brambling, I spent the next 15mins standing still watching them through binos an added bonus was when a male and female flew into the same tree which allowed me to compare the two. Awesome. These 3 eventually flew and headed in the direction of a nearby wood.....on the way back I started to think great ive got brambling on patch then a sad thought quickly replaced it which was it may very well be a while until I see another in this area......chuffed that I was in the right place at the right time I guess.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

Feb 7th update

Just shy of 60 species on the patch so far which is about 6 os square km with a few ive not added due to not being an acceptable tick in my mind .....im in two minds about burdon moor being a part of the patch, although it can produce some good birds it hasnt ever really clicked with me or maybe I should say I dont feel at home there.....the past month has been great despite the dreadful weather and this month has startedwell too..

Skylarks have recently started to do there thing.

A lonely meadow pipit I found in december has managed to survive the bad weather and let me know its presents a few days ago near marley hil mast.

A record for me of 50-60 fielfare showed well in a field south of marley hill mast early feb, although I feel fieldfare/redwing numbers havnt been as great this year as last year

A few song thrush and mistle thrush have reluctantly showed themselves too.

Quite good for grey partridge with a group of 8 showing near longfield house at 1st light. Pheasant and red legged n7mbers i feel are down.

3 buzzards briefly grouped together in nz 1959 in late january. And the occasional pair or single showing/calling here and there.

2-3 kestrel seen around patch and sparrowhawk seen in 2locations.

Stonechat hasnt shown since early january. Just before the snow.

Willow tit seemed to be doing well all in usual locations but with a new one far west of patch.

Long tailed tit personally have not showed well at all with only a few groups spotted.

Tree sparrow are doing well around marley hill football pitch id estimate 15-20.
A regular pair of house sparrow come in to yard to feed. And there seems to be good numbers in hedge near marley allotments.

2common gull have appeared on marley hill every now and then in january.

Around 8 greenfinch feed on feeders regularly. Goldfinch numbers seem to be ok.

Chaffinch have recently started calling.

Dunnocks Blackbirds robins wrens seem to be doing well .

Lapwing are calling at night and are occasionally seen flying overhead.

No little owl calling heard near marley hill this year. Although one may have been calling near longfield house..

No snipe or woodcock seen yet nor coot moorhen on any of the small ponds.

Small groups of golden plover have been seen.

No tawny owls heard.

Red kites seen on most walks with a group of two in late january.

Nuthatch seen near causey gill.as well as 2-3 dipper and 1 grey wagtail.

Not many pied wagtail seen with a few flying over head.

Goldcrest are regularly seen or heard.

No tree creepers seen yet.

Few coal tits....