Monday, 14 February 2011

Wandering Albatross Pictorial

Today, in sharp contrast to yesterday's persistent rain and blustery wind, was generally sunny and windless with the exception of 3 light showers. In the cemetery, a Chiffchaff was just about the first bird seen, while c16 Redwing were still feeding from the favoured fruit tree. At Radipole the birdsong continued with Reed Buntings singing from most of the reed beds as single Sparrowhawk and Great Spotted Woodpecker both made a show.

A pair of Great Crested Grebes were seen in breeding plumage, then

set about some serious courtship rituals.

A couple of vocal Song Thrush were also logged

as were a good count of 35 Carrion Crows in distant trees.

The walk along the seafront to Lodmoor would have drawn a blank except for the appearance of the resident Greenhill Turnstones but on the Moor

Lapwing and Dunlin seemed to have been disturbed by something.

This Mallard with head shining in the sun was though worthy of a photograph just before

c3 Black-tailed Godwit were found feeding in the margins.

Of these one was seen to be 'colour ringed',

while a second did a little wing stretching,

and the best news of the day was to find a pair of Oystercatchers have returned, hopefully to breed.

At Ferrybridge there was little more than a small group of mixed Gulls (these being Lesser Black-backed) and a small skein of Brent Geese flying down the Fleet.

On the way back from a fruitless search of Newton's Cove for a Black Redstart I took this photograph of Brewers Quay. Formally an exciting music pub, a small but interesting mall of shops and a Museum it is now destined to be refurbished and turned into a hotel.

This afternoon I was invited by Bob Ford to join his small group of keen wildlife watchers and visit Sherford Bridge some 15 miles from Weymouth. There and across

we had hopes of seeing Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, Great Grey Shrike, Crossbill and Red Kite. In the event we saw none of these but my first experience of

this dainty and colourful Lichen called Cladonia was alone worth the trip. Thanks to Bob and his Merry Band.

and finally what I think are an exciting series of Wandering Albatross photographs, taken at Kaikoura, South Island, New Zealand - ENJOY!