Monday, 13 February 2012


If only it lived up to its name but the sabbath was dull and overcast and even the few shots I did take were obscured by twigs. Anyway I shouldn't complain as it was an interesting webs count down on the Tyne. I started at Elswick Wharf where the pair of Muscovy Duck are still paddling around. Not sure how they came to be there but it certainly puzzles some of the passing cyclists. The count was fairly normal with good numbers of Teal and more Common Gulls than I normally encounter. The Shelduck have returned in force with 25 centred on the Costco area although when I put this number into the database it always queries my faculties.

Further on at Scotswood a small flock of Lapwing was joined by 88 Dunlin which is one of the largest counts of this species I've had. I notice Crammy birder also found good numbers so perhaps something has driven them in from the coast. Then to the second part of my count where I park briefly on double yellow lines on the bridge to Newburn Riverside park. I was a bit concerned as the place was crawling with police but they showed no interest. It was clear from the five police cars, ambulance, paramedic, fire engine and water fire rescue boat that something was afoot. Apparently a body had been found on the mud flats next to the boat yard.

Then further up river to the corner where the river turns north briefly and a large flock of Siskin fed on catkins. I reckoned 70 at the time but my photgraph of flock in flight numbers 126.

I mean 126 birds and I couldn't get on decent shot. I must admit I was torn between the Siskins the webs count and checking the gulls on the other side of the river for Icelands or the like.
Returning back across the wasteland that will unfortunately one day be business park I counted the Curlew flock three times and concluded 73, slightly down on last month which was over a hundred.
Count complete I headed home through Throckley where a Jackdaw feeding at the roadside caught my eye. I slammed on the brakes and grabbed the camera as the bird flew up into a tree. Just the one shot but enough white collar for Nordic Jackdaw or as I will write in the bulletin 'showing the characteristics of monedula sp.' Quite eventful really.

1 comment:

  1. Nice post, Siskins can and do certainly hold the attention when you find a feeding flock and there are nearly always branches in the way!!