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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Twite hunting at Fly Flatts

                                          Juv Greylag left behind
            Greenland Wheatear ( leucorhoa )




                                             Northern Wheatear ( oenanthe )

Thinking of giving Fly Flatts a miss today in the heavy rain and N> 4 soon changed after a late morning text from HC reporting a single Twite at the north end of the area down near the water on the dry stone walls scoped from his watch point on the top road.
                                                                        Thinking that Twite rarely move alone but stick to flocks as with Linnets and Mipits there was a chance that more were present and where better for them than down at the feeding station.
Arriving at 1530 hrs in heavy rain and the wind coming across the water from the North it felt like not one of my better ideas but I was togged up and the beauty of rain is it can only wet you once and after that it does,nt matter.
                                         The area was much livelier than in the blue skies of yesterday with 28 Canadas returned along with a single juv Greylag that is always on its own having been left behind or decided to stay behind after all the other Greylags have moved on. It looks in good health and can go on the water and fly up onto the moor so I suppose it will get by ok.
                                         Nothing at the feeding station but good to see plenty seed still down from yesterday just in case they were still in the area.. Wheatears were once again all along the bottom of the west bank and a walk on to the nw corner produced a count of at least 15. One pair stood out from the rest as Greenlands with the males bright orange breast , heavy build and long legs being quite apparent when near the Northerns. The female was a larger bird and very deep coloured with a full orange breast but she shot across to the rocks on the moor before I could snap her. Luckily I got shots of the male after having to get past him first to stop rain blowing straight into the lens.
                                                              Whilst walking back along the west bank near the feeding station a juv Stonechat appeared briefly on a fence post before dropping back down into the bracken.
                                                                 Well, no Twite for Bri but a great find by Howard ( Compo )
and reassuring that Twite are around and still drop down in this area. This could have been a dispersing bird or a mover but either way it puts a nice record on for Twite at Fly Flatts this year even if no more are found plus it got me up there today for a very wet but enjoyable hours birding.
                                                                  On the way back I drove on to the north end watch point and did a bit of scoping but to no avail in the now worsening weather.
Thanks again Howard.

The Icing on the Cake.
For 2 years now I,ve badgered Dave Sutcliffe and Jen for one of her famous home picked, home made Bilberry pies and tonight my dream came true with a knock on the door and there stood DJS, pie in hand. What a lovely way to end the day. Thanks very much for the lovely thought Jen, it will take pride of place on my dinner table tomorrow.
BS

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