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Griswold' Birding Year 2017

 
 
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Old Monday 2nd January 2017, 16:46   #1
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Griswold' Birding Year 2017

Well it's a New Year so it's time for a new list. Good luck all.

2016 total: 215

Picked Kev up at 6:15 and headed East. We decided we'd go for quality rather than quantity this year. As it turned out, we ended up with neither.

First stop was Parkend. The Rain was consistent and annoying. Could not locate any Hawfinches.

From here it was over to Stow on the Wold. After an hour a half standing in the rain in the freezing cold (ok we did have a bacon sarnie and coffee at the older persons home) we both decided this wasn't our type of birding so we left. Might try again if it sticks around and it's not raining.

Next we went to Saul. Could not find the Cattle Egrets - spot the theme. Now thoroughly wet we decided we couldn't stomach Slimbridge so, having noticed Waxwings being reported from Llandrindod Wells, we decided to head there. Unfortunately no location was given but as Kev had had a few nights out there we were confident we could locate them (desperate birders logic). Could we? Hell no. That was it. Light was running out. A fairly rapid drive to Brecon (I'd forgotten how nervous a passenger Kev is) did not give us enough time to locate the reported Waxwings there. Now enough really was enough. It was time for the last batch of mulled wine of the season.

Still, a bad day's birding is still a good day in my book The following is a (short) list of what we saw:

1. Common Buzzard
2. Blackbird
3. Robin
4. Carrion Crow
5. Nuthatch
6. Magpie
7. Blue Tit
8. Great Tit
9. Wood Pigeon
10. Mandarin (at Cannon Ponds)
11. Mallard
12. Dabchick
13. Cormorant
14. Long Tailed Tit
15. Dunnock
16. Coot
17. Moorhen
18. Lesser Black Backed Gull
19. Wren
20. Mute Swan
21. Jackdaw
22. Collared Dove
23. House Sparrow
24. Pheasant
25. Black- headed Gull
26. Herring Gull
27. Common Gull
28. Rook
29. Starling
30. Stock Dove
31. Fieldfare
32. Pied Wagtail
33. Redwing
34. Song Thrush
35. Canada Goose
36. Chaffinch
37. Pintail
38. Mistle Thrush
39. Goldfinch
40. Greenfinch
41. Great Black- backed Gull
42. Red Kite
43. Bullfinch
44. Dunlin
45. Goosander
46. Feral Pigeon
47. Heron

Rich
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Old Monday 2nd January 2017, 17:10   #2
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Ducked out with children this afternoon as the weather was gorgeous. Packed their bike and scooter in the car and headed for Kidwelly/ Pwll. For information the coffee at the cafe by Pwll slipway is shockingly bad. Added the following common birds:

48. Coal Tit
49. Siskin
50. Rock Pipit
51. Grey Wagtail
52. Little Egret
53. Red Breasted Merganser
54. Reed Bunting
55. Teal
56. Curlew
57. Lapwing
58. Redshank
59. Great Crested Grebe
60. Kingfisher (a beautiful female fishing from the rocks by Pwll Slipway)
61. Oystercatcher

Rich
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Old Wednesday 4th January 2017, 19:40   #3
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Had a quick scan during my lunch break today. Added the following:

62. Shelduck
63. Tufted Duck
64. Brent Goose
65. Gadwall
66. Northern Shoveller
67. Long-Tailed Duck (Ffos Las - pleased to get this so early in the year though there appear to be quite a few around at the moment)

Rich
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Old Thursday 5th January 2017, 18:42   #4
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Managed to pick up these on my lunch break today. Both at Dryslwyn Bridge Carmarthenshire.

68. Tree Sparrow
69. Great Spotted Woodpecker.
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Old Friday 6th January 2017, 16:10   #5
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Worked from home this morning and added the following:

70. Goldcrest
71. Jay
72. Treecreeper - a cracking view

Rich
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Old Saturday 7th January 2017, 18:41   #6
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Went out with Kev to Gloucestershire today. First stop was at Newport Road, Cardiff though. Outside The Range three birders were already there. Nikki came over and said we were in the right place

Sure enough, after 20 or so minutes, 20+ of these superb little beauties came in. A contender already for bird of the year as far as I'm concerned. Well chuffed.

73. Waxwing Lifer #1

Sorry for the junk photos but it was very early and the light was dreadful

Rich
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Old Saturday 7th January 2017, 18:49   #7
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Next we were off to Stow-on-the-Wold so this next one maybe a little controversial. But I say sod it. Innocent until proven guilty and all that. If it's not accepted I'll take it off. Interestingly (maybe?), I could have spent all day watching the Waxwings but left after 15 mins or so with this bird. To be fair though the light conditions were doing it no favours at all. Everyone on site that we saw were really well behaved. Thanks to the birder for the scope views and also had a nice chat with a couple from Swindon. Hope you connected with Waxwings afterwards

74. Blue Rock Thrush Potentially Lifer # 2.
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Old Saturday 7th January 2017, 18:58   #8
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Forgot to say that the first bird of the day was added as I was getting into the car.

75. Tawny Owl
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Old Saturday 7th January 2017, 19:02   #9
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From Stow we went to Slimbridge stopping at Hawling and Saul on the way. Couldn't connect with the Cattle Egrets at Saul but did pick up Yellowhammers and Red Legged Partridges at Hawling.

76. Yellowhammer
77. Red Legged Partridge
78. Stonechat
Rich
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Old Saturday 7th January 2017, 19:12   #10
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Slimbridge was more pleasant than expected. Unfortunately I'm not generally keen on the birders here though today it was different.

Added the following to the year list:

79. Greylag Goose
80. Common Crane
81. Chiffchaff (at Frampton)
82. Barnacle Goose
83. Little Stint - pleased to get this so early in the year
84. Pink-footed Goose - never easy in the West
85. Common Snipe
86. Ruff - again, pleased to get this early in the year.
87. Bewicks Swan
88. White-fronted Goose
89. Pochard
90. Eurasian Wigeon

Rich
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Old Monday 9th January 2017, 18:17   #11
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Picked up some more common - but great to see - common species during my lunch break today.

91. Raven
92. Goldeneye
93. Whooper Swan

Rich
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Old Sunday 15th January 2017, 15:24   #12
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No birding this weekend. Been too busy mucking around with the children in the snow on the Beacons.

Have added the following common species:

94. Common Kestrel.
95. Greenshank
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Old Saturday 21st January 2017, 09:58   #13
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A quiet start to the year. Added the following this week:

96. Skylark
97. Ringed Plover

Heading down the Gower with family after so there maybe a couple more additions today.

Also I got a copy of Out Of The Wild this morning. Looking forward to reading on an upcoming short break to the Cairngorms.

Rich
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Old Saturday 21st January 2017, 19:52   #14
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Had a great day out at Whiteford Point. Can't match Bongofury's birds today but saw birds I thoroughly enjoy watching nonetheless. Plus the children walked c6 miles which is always positive.

98. Black-Tailed Godwit
99. Grey Plover
100. Eider - one of my favourites as the 100th species.
101. Sanderling

And the on the way home we stopped for 30 minutes at Crofty Marsh. Had great views of a female Hen Harrier hunting on the marsh.

102. Hen Harrier

Rich
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Old Sunday 29th January 2017, 07:19   #15
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Didn't get a chance to look for the Bluetail yesterday as I'd set aside the day to look for a new car. Did stop off on the way though at a superb location. Picked Kev up at 6 a.m. and got to Marshfield for first light. Virtually the first bird of the day was a Tawny Owl

Wondered down the lane and despite not seeing the Little Owl (again!) there was plenty of activity. 8-10 Red-Legged Partridges walked across the lane in front of us and promptly disappeared. Winter Thrushes were pretty much everywhere with several Common Buzzards also around.

Got talking to a fella who owned a couple of the cottages on the corner of West Littleton Road and Rushmead Lane. He rents one of them out via cottages4you. I'll keep that in mind as it's a superb location and we're always looking for places to take the children.

Further along Rushmead Lane at the junction with Tormadon Road we found what we were after. A large flock of Corn Buntings and a lifer for Kev.

103. Corn Bunting
104. Meadow Pipit
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Old Sunday 29th January 2017, 07:25   #16
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Next it was off to Oxford to look at a car. Several Red Kites were in Oxfordshire along with a huge number of Scameras - beware.

Not sure if something was going on but we passed an armed response unit, several unmarked police cars and quite a few marked police cars. Anyway, test drive over and deal done. I'm steadily working my way through the VW group having had a Seat, VW and now a Skoda. Next stop Bentley

Rich
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Old Sunday 29th January 2017, 07:32   #17
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The Sat-nav was now programmed for Cotswolds Water Park. For some reason it's an area I really don't like birding in. The parking is dire and access is convoluted. At CWP 44 (I think) there were heaps of Red Crested Pochards. Then back to CWP 30 and straight away we were on to 3 Redheads a cracking male Smew. 2 more lifers for Kev in the space of 20 minutes

105. Red-crested Pochard
106. Smew

From here it was straight back to Wales and a bottle of red

Rich
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Old Sunday 5th February 2017, 17:09   #18
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Having a really slow start to the year. Heaps of Childrens parties and have also spent time looking for a new car.

Got the OH to drop myself and my youngest in Neath today. We then walked along the canal to Tonna for Sunday lunch and, to watch the Welsh game. Been years since I've walked along here but thoroughly enjoyed it. Siskins, Song Thrush, Bullfinch etc. were all seen. Also added:

107. Dipper
108. Marsh Tit

And then flying over my sister's house was a ruddy great female Sprawk.

109. Sparrowhawk

To cap it off Wales beat Italy and Sunday lunch was delicious.

Rich
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Old Tuesday 7th February 2017, 19:24   #19
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Had a cracking hour after work at Kidwelly Quay. Extremely still so all you hear were the Curlews, Redshanks and Lapwings. Had good views of Red-breasted Mergansers, Kingfisher, Dunlin, Greenshank and surprisingly, 4 Ruff. Added the following species to the year list:

110. Golden Plover
111. Spotted Redshank

Rich
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Old Saturday 11th February 2017, 15:47   #20
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Just got back from Rhosilli and am about to crack open a can of Brains Black - come on Wales.

The main flock of Scoter was way out so couldn't get a sniff of the Surf Scoter that's been there. Common was a year tick though

112. Common Scoter.

Then, when waiting for the OH, a pair of Chough had the decency to fly over. This really is a consistent site for them.

113. Chough

Rich
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Old Sunday 19th February 2017, 13:30   #21
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Spent a couple of hours looking for Goshawk yesterday in the Beacons but unfortunately didn't connect. Enjoyed listening to Mistle Thrush though singing from the tree tops. Also dipped on the Iceland Gull in Bridgend.

Stopped at the jetty at Aberavon and picked up a year tick in the form of a few Turnstones. Managed to grab a few pics. And the female Reed Bunting was taken earlier in the week during my lunch break.

114. Turnstone
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Old Monday 20th February 2017, 17:49   #22
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Took the boys to see Lego Batman Movie earlier today, which, unlike James on a different thread, I enjoyed. Fell asleep for 20 minutes or so but then I often do that - must be an age thing

From here, keen for the boys to spend some time away from the iPad/ PS4/ WiiU etc. we headed down to Kenfig Pool. Unfortunately it was misty as hell plus I spent most of the time looking down and making sure the boys didn't stand in any dog shit. It annoys the hell out of me that there seems to be a large number of totally inconsiderate owners using this place.

Down at the hide I could see no more than 50 yards in the mist. Fortunately a year tick drifted into view along with some Tufties and Pochard.

115. Greater Scaup - a handsome male.

One thing I forgot to mention was that I stopped off at the Gwendraeth Valley Butchers in Crosshands last week. I can totally recommend the bacon which they cure themselves but the sausages lacked seasoning in my opinion. The boys just polished off a couple Sirloins for tea so I think they must have been alright as well.

Rich
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Old Saturday 4th March 2017, 05:10   #23
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116. Barn Owl

Whilst driving to Scotland.
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Old Monday 6th March 2017, 05:47   #24
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Trying to remember these from recent few days in Scotland.

117. Red Grouse
118. Velvet Scoter
119. Northern Gannet
120. Brambling
121. Lesser Redpoll
122. Hooded Crow

I'll add some more after work.
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Old Wednesday 8th March 2017, 05:44   #25
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123. Black Guillemot
124. White-Tailed Eagle
125. Golden Eagle
126. Shag
127. Great Northern Diver
128. Black Throated Diver
129. Slavonian Grebe
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