Monday, 30 April 2012

Black Terns seen at Coneries pond, Attenborough this afternoon. They occasionally perched on the wooden posts alongside Common terns.

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Thanks to Rob Hoare posting his observations of a fall of Wheatear yesterday ( I was at Barton-in-fabis at 6am and managed to find at least 4 Wheatears on the ploughed field. 3 males and a pale female. There was a cold, numbing wind blowing down the moor and the birds sheltered behind clumps of soil out of the wind. Also on this field while I was there were Skylark, Linnet and a pair of Red-legged Partridges. Also noteable was a reeling Grasshopper Warbler coming from Branshill pool area.
Female Wheatear

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Common Terns. Coneries Pond, Attenborough.
During a 3 hour walk along the Trent at the new gravel workings, Long eaton I saw many Swallows and Sand martins above the Windsurfing lake along with a few Terns. Heard an alarm call and saw a flurry of activity ahead which turned out to be a Hobby chasing a small bird, Sparrowhawk-like, among the bushes. Further along across the Trent in a bare field I had distant views of Yellow Wagtail among Pied Wagtails and Skylark. In this field were many nesting Lapwing and I caught sight of at least 2 broods of chicks. The river was full to capacity and flowed strongly, a Grebe swimming upstream was almost swept away and preferred to dive rather than battle against the current. Walking back huge swarms of flies gathered above bushes and brambles, one swarm so dense it was actually audible. Above these multitudes the Sand Martins, Swallows and Swifts hawked tirelessly.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

A quick evening visit to Attenborough. A rather scruffy looking Ruff moulting into its spring plumage.
Two other residents of the spits - Common Sandpiper and Tufted Drake
By the 'Tower Hide' a Linnet posed as it sat atop a sapling for some minutes singing while in the vicinity sang a Sedge Warbler, Whitethroat and the explosive Cettis Warbler.

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Tree Pipit singing its heart out at Padley Gorge.
Waterfall at Padley.  

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Erewash Meadows. Standing at the viewing screen I couldnt miss this group of Pheasants, the cock bird with his harem of hens. He displayed briefly to one of the hens.
Flooded fields of Erewash Meadows with teal and Black-headed Gulls.
Drake Teal at rest and preening.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A pair of Ring Ouzels found on Branshill. Difficult to observe, they would fly into the hedge at any hint of danger. Later they flew across the field and could be watched at distance feeding in company with Starlings, Mistle and Song Thrushes.

Saturday, 14 April 2012

Friday, 13 April 2012

A pair of Bullfinches by the farm at Branshill. The Hen had a beakful of nesting material and as I watched seemed to gesture to the Cock, bowing her head in a deliberate way and making a faint buzzing noise as if to say 'Look what ive got, come and help me make a nest'. They then flew off together.
This Green Woodpecker played hide and seek as it crept up an Ash tree and never gave me clear views. Eventually it launched itself off the trunk and bounded across the moor to another tall tree where it gave good, if distant, views.

An immaculate Cock Reed Bunting posed beautifully at the top of a small Willow. It was constantly warning calling and I suspect its mate was on the nest close by.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Willow Warbler, Chaffinch, Blackbird and Wren. Branshill Moor

Red Crested Pochard asleep on Holme Pit.

My first Swallow in the area perched briefly on cables by the Farm at Clifton Grove.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Mistle thrush singing from the top of an oak.
Chiffchaff. Many singing males about as well as Willow Warbler and Blackcaps.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Dipper at Cromford
Feeding table. Carsington Water.
Great Spotted Woodpecker made a brief appearance along with a male reed Bunting.

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Black-necked Grebe at Kingsmill Res. While I sketched it kept to the edge of an artificial raft and occasionally called (a faint 'seep') It didnt dive. I watched it climb out of the water into a clump of growing Flag but quickly plopped back into the water. On the 'rafts' were Snipe, Dabchicks, Coots and Geese.