Monday, 27 December 2010

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to Everyone

Merry Christmas everybody, I hope you all
have a great new year!!

I thought I'd finish the year off with a few photo's
from my latest trip. I didn't have to go far for
what I wanted, literally just up the road from where
I live. The local church yard has been host to Redwing
and the odd Fieldfare.

There's also been Songthrush!!

And....finally Waxwing's!!
I know there's been a few about but these are the first
one's I've found in the Malvern area, only two but they
all count.
I just hope next year is just as good...

Monday, 6 December 2010


Yep...I got a few in the end, and Ledbury was the
place, not too far to go.

I've seen loads around on the net the last few weeks
but until this weekend I've not had the chance to
get to see any.

I could only manage Saturday morning, and only then
a couple of hour's. I'd promised to do a little christmas
shopping in the afternoon and I had my works do on
night so it didn't leave me long.

Saturday morning's weather was crap to be fair, misty
and hardly any light not the best for photography but
it was my only oporuntnity and sometimes you have
to take what you get.

The Waxwings didn't take long to turn up, at least twenty
were present so well worth the visit, here's a few shot's
from the morning, pretty pleased with what I got really
considering the weather.

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Last light!

Last weekend saw me heading for the hill's again.
I've been hoping for a Snow bunting or something
like that but as yet... nothing!
My search started as it normal does with a visit
to British Camp and around Wheatear Valley.
Wheatear Valley has produced some cracking birds
for me this year but today it was pretty quiet. The
normal Raven's soared above me as I walked the
pathway while Meadow Pipit feed amongst the grass.
I searched the rest of the area with very little success, I
did manged to find a few Redwing but as usual they
kept there distance, next I moved onto the Beacon
and North Hill.

The Beacon was void of anything, I think I probably got
there to late in the day, loads of people milling around
very little to be seen, North Hill was no different either
a few fly over Redwing and that was about it.

With the end of the day fast approaching I decided to
move off the hills and down onto the common below to
try my luck there, within minutes I found a pair of
Stonechat and as per usually I had no luck getting
close to the male, I'm not sure what it is... but he has
none of it, no matter how hard I try, one day I'll grab shot!

Today though, I could only grab a shot of the female
which I didn't mind in the slightest as I got my shot in the
most beautiful light, just as the sun was going down, when
you get that golden glow!

And that was all I could muster, hopefully this week
will prove better.

Saturday, 6 November 2010


I thought I'd post a couple more pictures of my local

I paid them another visit the other morning on my
way back from the hills, I didn't have to wait long for
more fabulous views.

This time it was the Male I managed a few decent
shot's of as he flew by, after looking at the pictures
more closely it looks like he hasn't long made a kill
judging by the blood on his breast.

Hopefully I'll be able to bring you a few more shot's
over this coming winter.

Monday, 25 October 2010

Local Birding!

With my car in the garage it was about all I could
manage really, I haven't been out for a couple of
weeks what with moving house and only just getting
over the Flu!

A local trip was about all I could do, and I'm glad it
was. First up, Peregrines. I haven't been up to see
these for quite a while and with the rest of hills pretty
quite I thought it was about time I paid them a visit

First up the Female, I've been watching these birds for
the last three years on and off and to this day I'm still
amazed by their speed and agility, This girl can really
move when she wants too. I've had her zoom past my
head before now chasing Jackdaws and she becomes
a blur!

Today she wasn't chasing, just calmly gliding around
having a little fun with her mate.

The male, not so easy as the Female to photograph,
this fellow can really move, He remained at distance
today but I did managed one decent shot as he came
past chasing the Female.

They played for a little while before they both zoomed
off into the distance, probably getting a little hungry after
all that excercise.

Next up, Castlemorton Common, another place I haven't
visited in a while. Castlemorton can be an odd place, at
times it can be decilate and other's it can be alive with

Today wasn't exactly alive but I did manage to find
a few birds Meadow Pipits seem to everywhere I turned.
A small flock of Linnets were busily feeding amongst the
grass and a pair of Stonechats were flying up high catching
insects. I spent most of mine time with the Stonechats as
the female was very confiding, allowing me to get some
decents shot's.
The male was completely different, I couldn't get anywhere
near him, with time running out I left it there.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

No Time!

Well, I'm finally back on the internet, after a week without
having it, you don't realise how much you use until it's gone.
I've been busy moving house over this last week, hopefully
I'll be able to get out soon and start posting again, were just
starting to get straight now.

Report's look pretty good on the hill's with Redwing and
Fieldfare in good numbers around Happy Valley. A few Ring
Ouzel around too, I managed to find a single one a couple of
week's on British Camp but It didn't hang around for long.

As I say I've not really had a chance to go out recently, my last
trip was on the Malverns, visiting North Hill and The Beacon.
North Hill didn't really produce much, although there was a
single bird on the summit that had me wandering, I think it's
a young Skylark but I wasn't sure. Let me know what you
think, the picture isn't very good I'm afriad but I'm sure
someone will be able to tell.

The Beacon had the usually Meadow Pipit's around the summit.
There was a single Wheatear, which was very confiding allowing
me to grab a few decent photo's...

Hopefully all being well, and If I can shake this darn cold I've had
for the last week, I'll be able to get out this weekend, I'll let you
know how I get on.

Monday, 27 September 2010

More Bunting's!

I couldn't resist another go at getting a few
more shot's of these beautiful little bird's.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Lapland Buntings North Hill!

I couldn't believe my luck this morning when I
found 5 Lapland Buntings on North Hill, here in
Malvern. I travelled 4 hours to see these birds
for the first time two weeks ago, now there
here on my doorstep...Typical!
I started out with a walk around Chat Valley
and then worked my way up to the Beacon,
finally finishing off on North Hill. This is
my normal route, that way you can cover
pretty much all areas.
Chat Valley had very little, apart the normal
Green Woodpeckers probing into the hillside.

The walk towards the Beacon held a few
migrants with Willow Warbler and ChiffChaff
being the main one's. The Beacon it self had
very little to offer only Meadow Pipits, mind
you there were at least 30 so plenty to see.
No sign of any Wheatear...I was quite surprised.
North Hill...This area has produced some
cracking birds over time and today was no exception,
I could hardly believe my luck when I popped my
head over the top of the hill and was greeted by
what I thought was a Lapland Bunting, I only
managed a split second view at first but it was
enough to keep me looking.

I explored further, looking through the Meadow
Pipit's but nothing, It wasn't until I started my walk
down the hill that I noticed another one and
another, I'd found 5 birds in total, must be something
of a record.

I spent the next hour trying to get a few photo's
before a walker came over the hill and flushed them.

Here's a few shot's!

Saturday, 18 September 2010

One Good Tern!

I had a quick trip over to Grimley New Workings
today straight after a night at work in search of the
two reported Juvenile Black Terns.

They've been there for a couple of days now but I
haven't really had a chance to go over. I got there
for first light this morning in the hope that they'd
still be there.

It didn't take me long to find one of them, they tend
to stick to the same area every year, but that was it.
Only the one could be found. The other one's probably
gone off to find somewhere a little warmer, and who
can blame him. I can feel that nip already!...brrrr!!

It was quite obliging, making several passes in front of
me over the couple of hours I was there, giving me a
chance to get a few shot's.

Apart from the Tern there were serveral Common Snipe
dotted about. At about 09.00 50-60 Canada Geese
decended on the pool, a quick scan through the flock reveled
only a couple of hybrids nothing out the ordinary.

3 Littel Egrets were still around, although quite distant. Quite
a few migrants were also found around the pool including
Willow Warbler and Chiffchaff.

As the day began to warm somewhere in the region of 400-500
House Martins with the odd Swallow in the mix decended on
the pool.

A good few hours birding, well worth the effort.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Minsmere In A Day!

I know...but it was worth it, no less than five new
birds for me. I'd been ploughing through the internet
all week trying to find something for the weekend
but couldn't make up my mind what to do. Saturday
night came and I still hadn't settled on anything
except I fancied something a bit special. I've got to
admit I don't usually travel too far for birds, a maxium
of a couple of hours in any direction is more than
enough for me.

I'd been watching the movements of the Lapland
Buntings all week, they were popping all over the
place even reports of fly over birds at Slimbridge.
I'd hoped for maybe one on the Malverns (wouldn't
that be nice) but nothing. In fact the next closest
ones were at Minsmere, where two had been
reported throughout most of the week. I guess my
mind was made up, Minsmere and Lapland Bunting's.

I must admit the prospect of a four journey didn't
excite me to much and to arrive in time for first light
would mean leaving my place at 01.30am. I sat a wrote
a couple of quick emails to try a gain a little more
information and soon had the replys back with what
I was after, so that was it I was all set.

Sunday morning came (very quickly) and I was soon
heading up the motorway. One thing about leaving at
that time of the morning was the roads where empty.
Completely void of traffic, so that made the journey
much more bearable. I arrived at Dunwich car park
just as it was getting light, I'd been recommeded to start
at the beach here and work my way down to Minsmere
because the Buntings had been showing more at the
north end.

I scoured the beach for a good hour and half with no
success at all. I'd all but given up until I spotted a couple
of photograhers heading my way. It turned out that it
was one of the guys I'd emailed the previous night (Jon
Evans) accompanyed by his mate (Ian Clarke or
"Sparky" as he likes to be called) A quick chat reveled
they'd had about as much success as me, they too
had made there way down the beach in pretty much the
same style as myself and had seen nothing. Jon had said
"they'll be here somewhere"....but with more searching
still nothing.

I made my way further up the beach until I'd reached
the Sluice. The Sluice was home to quite a few Swallows.
I could hardly resist a go at these beautiful little birds.
I watched them as they landed on various perches from
fences to sign post's but I'd noticed one individual was
landing on a dead tree. I waited for him to move off and
got myself into position then awaited his return. I didn't
have to wait long before he was back and only yards
from me.

With a few shot's in the bag I made my way back down the
beach for what I'd originally came for the Lapland Buntings.
As I walked down the beach I could see in the distance a
crowd had gathered near to the East Hide. I arrived to
find the Lapland Buntings had been seen but then lost
again, with continued searches from everyone soon found a
lone bird.

I quickly managed a few shot's before the hoards of people
started to gather. Quite close views at times.

Apart from the Lapland Buntings there was a Wryneck
reported in the North bushes. I managed to see it but
that was about it, photograhing it was another
thing, I did manged one shot but purely for records
purposes, I'm not going to embaress myself by posting it
on here. In fact apart from the Buntings everything
that day kept it's distance. Red Backed Shrike another
first for me kept very distance, to far for even the big
guns cracking bird to watch though.

I did manged to get quite close to a Wheatear on Dunwich
Heath which was nice although I was trying to find Dartford
Warbler. I did manged to see the Dartford Warblers, again
another first for me but they kept there distance as well,
again only managing records shot's.

With the rain clouds gathering fast and everything
at least seen although not photographed it was time to
head back. A good day all in all with another five new
birds to add to my ever growing list.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

My Lucky Week!

Yep!...My luck has continued this week with more
great stuff from my local area the Malvern Hills.
Continued trips this week looking for migrants
has been very successful indeed.

Yesterday more Wheatear and a first for myself
a Whinchat. The Wheatear are probably some of
the most obliging birds I've come across at points
they were literally within a feet of me. Allowing me
to obtain probably my best shot's to date, in fact I
don't think I could better it.

The Whinchat was no different a very confiding
bird, again allowing me some very close views at
times. It's probably never seen a human before.

Watching me!

Looking for his next meal!

Really Close!

I managed to find another Redstart, they seem to
be all over the Hills this year.

Lunch in the shade!

Enjoying the sunshine!

I just hope my luck continues.