Monday, 12 March 2012

Jammy Clams - yellow-browed and Treecreepers


The Clams decided to head south again for days birding, year ticking and
life ticking for some mentioning no names! Only three clams today - Oily /
Chatty / Bearded. Our missing Clam - Captain Campervan Clam is on soup
kitchen duties in Wolverhampton feeding the homeless, think we should change
his name to Charitable Clam!

We had decided to go for the adult Rose Coloured Starling at was at Hordle
in Hampshire, I hadn't seen one for about 20 odd years and had only ever
seen juveniles' so the chance to see an adult male gave me the incentive to
get up at 0245 in the morning.

We got to Hordle a small village within the New Forest, there were no other
birders present so we starting walking around the housing estate were the
bird had been yesterday, scanning the starlings on the roof tops and oak
trees, no joy so we walked around by the War memorial where it was last
seen. Then right in front of us on the floor, there it was!! BANG, the bird
was about 20 ft away from us feeding on a worm. It then flew up on top of a
gutter about ten foot away so I tried took take some photos off my phone,
got a couple of pictures but I'm definitely not David Bailey!!

Right that was easy and it was now only 07.20am, so feeling liberated we set
off for Eastleigh Country Park for the Hawfinches that were there.

We arrived at Eastleigh at 8.15, no other birders about just a few dog
walkers and fishermen on the pools, looks like we will have to relocate
these as well.

We searched the woods to the left of the pools, no joy! Three Great Spotted
Woody's, 1 Green Woody, Greenfinches but no Hawfinches! We decided to walk
around the perimeter of the pools scanning the trees, we then came across
another birder who said that the birds had been seen in a small copse of
trees just to the left of us, so we gathered around, then a pinging call was
heard... Hawfinches!!! We rushed in between the trees into a small clearing
and there they were, flying between the trees, and one decided to be a show
off and sat in the top of a tree, WHAT A CRACKER!! . We saw a total of 4
birds UTB so where next?? Green Winged Teal.

The Clams decided to head for Faringhton Marshes for the Green Winged teal ,
we arrived at the marshes at about 12 noon after we had stuffed our gobs
with a massive Morrison's Breckie, There were a party of "Bird Spotters" on
the bank surrounding the marsh, we asked if the Teal had been seen, but the
group leader said that nit hadn't so we set up our scopes and scanned the
pools in front of us, Large numbers of Redshank was surprising and Black &
Barr Tailed Godwit's , Dunlin, shellduck, and Teal, but no Green winged !
There were also large numbers of Brent Geese so we scanned through them
hoping for maybe a RB Goose or a Black Brant, but no joy!

Now earlier in the day a Yellow Browed Warbler had been reported in
Worcester, and as two of the Clams NEEDED IT, I said that we can start
heading home and drop into Warnden for the Warbler.

We were nearly at the car when I checked the pager, MEGA ALERT! SHORT TOED

Punched the postcode in the Satnav - 200 miles!! Off we set, two hours later
and no nails left on our fingers we arrived at the site, we walked down 3oo
yards from the visitor centre too group of 8 birders, it hadn't been seen
for an hour! Scanning across the railway line into a small scrubby area at
the base of the cliffs, we then heard it call, similar to a Dunnocks call,
then one of the birders shouted " I'VE GOT IT ! " we ran to him and got onto
, SEEN IT BANG!! The birds call was the main I.D. Feature but we could also
pick up the browner flanks which emphasised its white throat and breast, we
had views totalling 45 seconds! But with the bird calling it gave us the ID,
so in the BAG!

We stayed for another 45 mins hoping for more views but as the sun was
starting to go down the bird didn't show again!!

What a great day!! CLAM ON!!

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