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A camping trip

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Old Tuesday 4th July 2006, 18:57   #1
Ant
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A camping trip

OK, it was acually a Duke of Edinborough bronze expition, but I still managed to build up a reasonable sized list.
Day one

I Left home at 10 past 8, (carrying 12 KG 2.3 miles to college, a challenge if you have never walked with that much waight before). I arrived at college at 9, only to discover I was the only one there. after about 15 minutes, somone else turned up. turns out that we where the only 2 going.
We had to wait until 11:30 before we set off (what a waste of effort getting up early).

The jurney itself was rather uninventful, a few corvids, gulls and a buzzard, but then I wasnt paying much attention.
We passed though Valley on anglesey at 10 past 1, turning along the road leading to cemlyn bay (we never went there). Instead, we turned off for penrhyn, turnd out we where staying at a private caravan and campsite called sandy beach (the beach is indeed sandy).

We arrived on site at half 1 and by 10 past 2 all the tents where up. at this time all that was at the camp was a sparrow.

We (myself and the only other person to turn up) then went for a walk along the beach at quater past 3. All we saw was few herring gulls, a few meadow pipit, and a kestrel.

at the end of the beach, I scrambled over some rocks, round into a small cove, nothing there watsoever, so, as the high tide mark was above my head I beet a hasty retreat. We arrived back at 25 past 4.

At 10 past 5 we set off for a walk at newborough, arriving at 10 to 6, the first sighting was a magpie, but appart from a few birds heard, the forrest itself was rather dull.

On the beach, I showed them a group of cormorants through my scope. Going onto a island that i cannot remember the name of, there where plenty of meadow pipits great black backed gulls, oystercatcher, Common terns, and a cormorant colony just offshore. If the sun had not been setting, i probably would of ID'd more small birds.
The way back was rather uninventful, a few oystercatcher, but nothing else really. We arrived back at the minibus at quater past 8.

We then headed to a supermarket in holyhead, not much seen on this leg appart from a swallow.
We then went to a chippy (still in holyhead), where a rook was preening on a lamp post.

Crossing back over to anglesey, a number of curlew where probing the mud between the islands.

We arrived back in time to see about 100 starlings going to roost, at10 to 10. but we had missed the display, as they where just sitting on power cables and falling to roost.

To pass the time I then decided to try to learn how to call birds in (after being told the basics by fiona a month ago), I didnt do very well. Appart from this, I also watched rabbits in night vision. until midnight, when I got too bored to stay up any more.
just before I dropped off to sleep, I think I may of heard a tawny calling. but the wind had picked up so it made it hard to tell.

Day 2 coming up.
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Old Tuesday 4th July 2006, 19:31   #2
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Hi Ant,

What a disappointment, only having 2 of you turn up for an expedition like that, I should think that the Organisrs weren't best pleased.

As for carrying that load, you're welcome, it's all that I can manage these days to carry myself! Still, it's good exercise for a strapping lad.

Not too bad a list all things considered, if the birds aren't about then you can't see them, but remember along shorelines always check the Pipits carefully for Rock and Water.

No more comments until I've read Pt. 2.

Cheers, Bill.
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Old Tuesday 4th July 2006, 19:34   #3
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day 2

Day 2
20 past 4 in the morning. I got some clean clothes on, but it would be 4 hours before I got a wash, as a magnetic key card is requited to access the toilets.

dispite strong wind, one bird was singing its little hart out, when i found it, it turned out to be a wren on a telegraph poll.
Walking to the beach to do a bit of sea watching at 10 to 5, a swallow or martin flew passed, it was afterall too fast and dark to tell.

during the seawatch I saw, herring and black headed gulls A few waders about osystercatcher and Curlew. I photographed the sunrise, and by 10 past 5 all the curlew had gone from the beach.

I arrived back at camp at half 5, just in time to see the starlings leaving the roost. I managed to get some photos of them too just before I set off for a walk round the camp. Here I came accross robin,woodpigeon, collared dove I think i heard a raven, that is, if ravens go "Kronk kronk" and a greenfinch. by now it was 5 past 7.

When the tutors finally woke, I was able to go get a wash. Then at quater past 9 i packed my kit away. I finished packing at 5 to 10, then helped with a tutors 8 person tent.

Whilst waiting to leave, a carrion crow and starlings where probing the gound where the tents had been. at 11:35 we finally set off, destination, Baeumaris.

We arrived at quater past 12, where I saw jackdaws.

Myself and the other student then went in the castle, where we saw mallards, ferel pigeons, pied wagtail, lesser black backed gulls, lesser black back gull chicks on top of the castle (a tourist went " aww" when she saw the chicks.

Just before leaving, there was a grey heron fishing on the straight, along with more gulls. by the time we set off home it was 1 pm. 20 minutes later we where driving through Bangor. By 20 to 2 we passed Conwy RSPB. I finally got dropped off about a mile from home, and arrived at quater past 3.

This has got to be my longest report yet, but even this will be small when I write up my report from my holiday. I just hope you have been able to stick with it all the way through.

heres the list of my sightings
buzzard
sparrow
meadow pipit
kestrel
magpie
cormorants
great black backed gull
oystercatcher
Common tern
swallow
rook
curlew
black headed gull
robin,
woodpigeon
collared dove
jackdaw
mallards
ferel pigeon
pied wagtail
lesser black backed gull
grey heron
Total= 22, not my best, but not bad considering the lack of serious birding.
and of course, rabbit.

Take care

ant

Ps I Have now sussed out how to imitate a collared dove (almost) and cukcoo (again, almost).

Last edited by Anthony Britner : Wednesday 5th July 2006 at 17:17.
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Old Tuesday 4th July 2006, 19:46   #4
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Well sounds great, DofE does always help out with the birding.

My gold exped helped me get a couple of corking birds, ravens, stonechats, jays etc. They really make carting a two and half stone pack up the side of a mountain in a torrent of rain and wind worthwhile. There's nothing better than getting to the top and realising the weather's cleared, and standing there admiring the scenery and the mountain wildlife. Hope you get as far as gold.

Glad to hear your weather wasn't too bad. I think this Sandy beach place sounds okay, and common terns are always great to see. A bird that always makes me feel happy. You're another one who does the old early start technique, we're usually packed and ready to go before the other groups are out their sacks. It makes the whole thing much easier.
Btw, meadow pipits on your list twice. Why not, they are good.

Good luck with future expeds,
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 17:22   #5
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Thanks for pointing my mistake Chris, as I'm currently having to use dial up 9 My broad band connection has been disconected whist we switch providers) it's arkward to check everything.
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 19:26   #6
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A great report Ant , my you do wake up early!!! Best time of the day though isn't it!
You saw a good variety of birds Ant,well done

Pity only two of you on the trip,but then again perhaps it gave you more time to do your birding!

Thanks for sharing your D of E expedition with us all ant.

A most enjoyable read.

Happy Birding
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 19:32   #7
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Sounds like you had a good time even if there were only two of you. What was the physical part of your expedition? When my daughter did the Bronze D of E she had to walk solidly for two days, covering about 30 kilometres. For her Silver she canoed down the Thames from its source in the Cotswolds to Newbury. That took her 3 days.
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 19:44   #8
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Hi Ant,

Here I am back again as promised.

Not at all a bad list considering that you weren't really on a birdy trip, the early rising is what does it, best part of the day for birding.

Can I suggest (banging this drum again I know) that you start to put your lists in British List order. Several reasons but the main ones are that then you won't duplicate; you'll be able easily to compare different lists (and amalgamate them for 'year' lists etc; and other people will find them much easier to 'read'.

If you have an up-to-date bird book with the species starting at Swans/Geese then that's the 'new' order, one that starts with Divers is the old 'Voous' order which everyone used until recently (and the change is a d..n nuisance for me and lots of other old birders). Alternatively go to

www.bou.org.uk/

and click on 'British List' in the top bar. The book is easier to follow.

How did you get on with your Bronze Award?

Cheers, Bill
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 20:25   #9
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Thanks for your report Ant, you seem to have had a good time, even if that pack was a bit heavy I haven't seen any terns yet, so you're up on me there.

D
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 20:30   #10
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Hi Ant,
Phew-ee! What a list!
Sounds like you are really getting the most out of your expedition.
Great tip from Bill, I may have to "nick it"

Well done Ant
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 20:32   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill moss

Can I suggest (banging this drum again I know) that you start to put your lists in British List order. Several reasons but the main ones are that then you won't duplicate; you'll be able easily to compare different lists (and amalgamate them for 'year' lists etc; and other people will find them much easier to 'read'.

If you have an up-to-date bird book with the species starting at Swans/Geese then that's the 'new' order, one that starts with Divers is the old 'Voous' order which everyone used until recently (and the change is a d..n nuisance for me and lots of other old birders). Alternatively go to

www.bou.org.uk/

and click on 'British List' in the top bar. The book is easier to follow.

Cheers, Bill
Oh dear, Bill and I thought I was doing so well. I noted your comments to Scott a while ago. It had never occurred to me to list the birds in a particular order.

Now I find I've been doing it all wrong 'cos me books are out of date.

Why do they keep having to change things

D
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Old Wednesday 5th July 2006, 21:29   #12
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Hi Delia,

You think you got problems, what about all my note-books going back er...... years? Just between you and me I'm not changing them, I'll struggle on with the Vouus order in private.

Cheers, Bill.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:07   #13
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Bill, I'll make sure all the birds in my list are grouped together by type next time.

Everyone else,
Photos are about to be posted.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:11   #14
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1st lot

here are the first lot of pics.

None are posted in any particular order.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:13   #15
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second batch

Heres the second batch of pics.
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Last edited by Anthony Britner : Thursday 6th July 2006 at 15:16.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:21   #16
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3rd lot

the 3rd lot of pics.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:25   #17
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4th lot

the 4th batch
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:29   #18
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5th lot

the 5th set of pics.
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 15:33   #19
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The 6th and final set

No more pics after this.

I'm posing a bit in the photo of me, but then, what else could I of done?
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Old Thursday 6th July 2006, 19:21   #20
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Could somone ID the 3 flower photos I've posted?

The one that looks like a daisy was about 5cm across, about 30-40cm tall, and the leaves had spines on them.
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Old Friday 7th July 2006, 11:57   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kits
you. What was the physical part of your expedition?
Hi kits
We just spent 6 hours doing circuit training in the College Gym.
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Old Friday 7th July 2006, 19:37   #22
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Hi Anthony,

NIce set of pics, you certainly spread yourself around. I especially like the Island in the 1st set, the road in the 3rd, and the ruins in the 4th. That sun shot in the last lot was a bit brave, be careful with those. Good shot of the Starlings coming to roost, tricky light.

Can't help much with the flowers I don't think, I'm pretty poor on flowers (and on most things except birds come to that) but the 3rd one may be Bird's-foot Trefoil.

What camera are you using?

Bill.
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Old Friday 7th July 2006, 20:45   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bill moss
Hi Anthony,

NIce set of pics, you certainly spread yourself around. I especially like the Island in the 1st set, the road in the 3rd, and the ruins in the 4th. That sun shot in the last lot was a bit brave, be careful with those. Good shot of the Starlings coming to roost, tricky light.

Can't help much with the flowers I don't think, I'm pretty poor on flowers (and on most things except birds come to that) but the 3rd one may be Bird's-foot Trefoil.

What camera are you using?

Bill.
Hi bill

Glad you like the pics, most where taken with my SLR (EOS 350D &sigma 28-300mm lens) but some, where taken using my compact camera (fuji F700).

to take the close up of the sun I never looked though the scope, I used the camera itself to line it up.

I dosn't matter too much about the flower ID's, but I will say that I was standing next to no less than 10 bee orchids today.
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Old Saturday 8th July 2006, 13:08   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anthony Britner
We just spent 6 hours doing circuit training in the College Gym.
Hi Ant

Just the six hours ... LOL! Blimey not sure I could manage six minutes! Well done you!
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Old Saturday 8th July 2006, 14:03   #25
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Hi Ant

Just the six hours ... LOL! Blimey not sure I could manage six minutes! Well done you!
6 hours over 6 weeks to be exact.
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