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Little Curlew tracking, a new season begins.

Posted Friday 27th March 2015 at 16:55 by Rick and Elis
We have received this exciting message from Clive Minton and Inka Veltheim about the beginning of this year's movement of Little Curlews in Northern Australia which we hope to follow and bring in a series of guest blogs by them...http://www.waderquest.org/2015/03/li...on-begins.html
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'STOP Shorebirds from dying'. BirdLife Australia appeal and Farewell Shorebirds proje

Posted Tuesday 24th March 2015 at 16:12 by Rick and Elis
Imagine how tired you would feel if you had to make the incredible non-stop flight from Alaska to Australia like Bar-tailed Godwits do. It would be the equivalent of you running a marathon, non-stop for 9 days at 53kph the whole way with no food, water or rest. Some feat!

Bar-tailed Godwits obviously arrive in Australia after such a journey exhausted and very hungry, they will have lost 50% of their body weight along the way...http://www.waderquest.org/2015/03/st...-birdlife.html
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The last thing a Blue Tit wants to see - but often does!

Posted Monday 23rd March 2015 at 19:37 by Rick and Elis
A sparrowhawk locking-on to it!
This beauty spent some time sitting on our bird bath beneath the feeders today...
before moving off to the fence and then away empty taloned.

Fantastic prolonged views of this handsome fellow that as a youngster I could only dream of. Mind you having these birds around may be good for us, but not so much fun for the other birds in the garden...http://www.rick-simpson.com/
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Goldeneye in eclipse!!! And it's only March!

Posted Friday 20th March 2015 at 21:31 by Rick and Elis
Not eclipse plumage then obviously. Today we were lucky enough to witness a partial exclipse of the sun here in Newport Pagnell where the sun forever shines. Here is a photo Elis took of the event.
As if this wasn't exciting enough upon deciding to check out the lake as there seemed to be a fair amount of duck activity, I espied our first Goldeneyes, a pair. This brings our Cottage total up to just one short of the magic 80. (Not sure why it is magic actually but it is a sort of landmark)......
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New ID feature for White-rumped and Baird's Sandpiper?

Posted Monday 16th March 2015 at 16:34 by Rick and Elis
Spending many hours looking at photographs, both our own and on the internet, and more recently at skins at the Natural History Museum in Tring, Elis and I noticed that there was a tendency for the feathering at the base of the bill of these two species to be distinctive and thought that perhaps this could be used as an additional feature to help ID a lone bird in a strange place...http://www.waderquest.org/2015/03/ne...umped-and.html
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