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KB57's 2017 UK list

 
 
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Old Friday 19th May 2017, 11:23   #26
kb57
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19th May: a very wet morning in Northumberland, grey skies and...

141: grey partridge
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Old Friday 26th May 2017, 15:31   #27
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Lots on at work so no time for birding in a critical time of year...chances of my target species wood warbler diminishing, along with three upland woodland species I did manage to see last year - tree pipit, common redstart and pied flycatcher...
I did get a couple of 'heard onlys' when work took me near Cambridge on 22nd May - green woodpecker and nightingale, the latter frustratingly close.
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Old Friday 9th June 2017, 16:28   #28
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5th June: Epping Forest, Highams Park area

142. ring-necked parakeet
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Old Wednesday 14th June 2017, 11:31   #29
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13th June: upper Coquetdale, Northumberland
evening visit to a woodland where we've previously seen redstart, spotted flycatcher and (a few years ago) tree pipit...today cuckoo, sparrowhawk and redpoll made for an interesting walk, but for the year list only produced:

143. woodcock
garden warbler (heard-only)

I can't recall ever seeing a 'sunlit' woodcock before, revealing just how richly warm-brown coloured they are..every other time has either been daytime views in cold winter light, or evening roding flights.
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Old Tuesday 20th June 2017, 12:51   #30
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20th June: SE Northumberland

144. grasshopper warbler *

A very satisfying addition to the year list - heard reeling early morning, so I settled down and waited, determined it wasn't going to be another 'heard only'. Took a bit of patience, but it eventually moved from cover and perched on a fence post (so much for skulking!), put its head up and reeled, then leant forward and cocked its tail like a wren. Possibly my best ever view.
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Old Wednesday 21st June 2017, 11:52   #31
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21st June: SE Northumberland

145. peregrine

23rd June, S Yorkshire - 2 more peregrines...like buses, wait six months then 3 come along at once! (locations redacted - first possible, second definitely breeding (adult / juv))

Last edited by kb57 : Friday 23rd June 2017 at 13:53. Reason: Additional record
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Old Monday 26th June 2017, 12:00   #32
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24th June: Coquet Island

146. Arctic tern
147. Atlantic puffin
148. razorbill
149. whimbrel *
150. roseate tern

Took lots of photos, but a roseate tern flight pic (as opposed to one stood next to a numbered nest box) still eludes me.
A UK whimbrel eluded me all last year, and was a welcome and unexpected addition to the day's list.
Left all cameras behind the following evening for a walk out to Newton Point, usually the scope is more appropriate. Mistake: close views of shelduck, an eider creche, and a cuckoo on foreshore rocks (!) eating a very large caterpillar while being mobbed by meadow pipits inevitably ensued...

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:55. Reason: Missed out razorbill
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Old Tuesday 4th July 2017, 18:39   #33
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After six months, ahead of my 2016 total (142), and more intriguingly keeping up with my uber-keen teenage birder 1972 half-year total of 148...I still had the Dorset heathlands and Suffolk wetlands and heaths to come that year though..

3rd July: near Frosterley, Co.Durham

151. common redstart

A rubbish view of a female flying across my path and into dense woodland, but after two visits to Skinningrove this year I can't complain about Phoenicurus spp.!

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:55. Reason: Correct numbering
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Old Tuesday 18th July 2017, 12:22   #34
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Work took me to Cambridgeshire last week, giving me the opportunity to visit a nature reserve famous for nightingales...which weren't singing this late in July; however I did catch up with a few other species which have managed to elude me until now.

July 13th: Paxton Pits

152. green woodpecker
153. garden warbler *
154. kingfisher

The following day found me working in the East Midlands, heading back north in the afternoon...I know I'm trying to stick with incomplete success to a 'no-twitching' rule, but that doesn't include rare breeding species, right??

July 14th: East Leake Quarry

155. European bee-eater *

This is also, according to Scythebill, lifer #672...except it isn't, as I have a distinct memory of seeing a riverbank colony from a train in northern Portugal during my non-birding years, and it's ticked off at the start of my old copy of 'Peterson, Mountfort & Hollom'...but didn't make it into my recent consolidation of records into one list. Anyway, this was much more satisfying, well worth a relatively modest 35 mile diversion!

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:55. Reason: Correct numbering
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Old Sunday 23rd July 2017, 16:13   #35
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Couple of days off in London with one of the main 'targets' the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Natural History Museum; also managed another..

22nd July: Kensington Gardens

156. little owl

...saw Mandarin and Egyptian goose too, which I'd feel happier ticking if they were a bit further away from wildfowl collections...

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:56.
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Old Wednesday 2nd August 2017, 11:49   #36
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No further additions last weekend, needing to go to Carlisle we tagged on a first ever visit to RSPB Campfield Marsh. Worth it for the white beak-sedge and black darter on the raised mire, but really not the right season for visiting this Solway goose site. Summer plumage dunlin and moulting golden plover provided a bit of wader interest on the foreshore.
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Old Monday 21st August 2017, 18:52   #37
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As work found me in Immingham on Friday, with a free Saturday to follow, I took the opportunity to road-test the new birdwatching site guide for Yorkshire. Mixed fortunes, but overall managed to move the list along nicely:

18th August, RSPB Blacktoft Sands
157. green sandpiper *
158. common snipe (at last!)
159. spoonbill *
160. spotted redshank *

19th August

Hatfield Moors
161. black-necked grebe * (summer plumage - excellent!)

North Cave Wetlands
162. garganey *

Hornsea Mere
163. little gull *

On the negative side, missed a goshawk by 5 minutes at Wykeham Forest, then spent 1.5 raptor-free hours admiring the view...hopefully I'll get round soon to doing a 'your birding day' contribution to my 24 hours in Yorkshire

Back in the NE
20th August, Newton Point, Northumberland
164. Northern wheatear (another 'about time' addition)

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:56. Reason: Correct numbering
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Old Thursday 24th August 2017, 12:33   #38
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24th August, Druridge Pools
Found a spot for spotting spotted crake, which sadly remained unspotted; however my wader list continued its progress towards respectability...
165. little ringed plover

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:57. Reason: correct spelling error - and month - and numbering
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Old Monday 28th August 2017, 13:20   #39
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26th August, RSPB Blacktoft Sands
After seeing spoonbills, green sandpiper and spotted redshank, it was inevitable that my partner didn't want to miss out...she was successful with all three, also adding garganey to her year list. Marsh harriers, ruff and lots of snipe also made for a great day, along with one new addition to the year list:

166. water rail

My #1 bogey bird as a teenage birder, water rail always feel special.

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:57. Reason: Correct numbering
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Old Tuesday 12th September 2017, 12:17   #40
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10th September, Leighton Moss
Meant to have a non-birding couple of days in the Lakes, but the appalling weather on Sunday meant a diversion to the shelter of the hides at RSPB Leighton Moss, and an impromptu twitch was in order. We were one of the luckier ones to arrive at the Grisedale Hide within 5 minutes of the purple heron making one of its periodic appearances, so:

167. purple heron * (1st UK)

Very little wader activity down at the Morecambe Bay hides though, starting to get a bit concerned that I still haven't seen a greenshank this year...

Travelling back yesterday, added another high-speed tick from the A69, thanks to my sharp-eyed partner noticing a crow mobbing an owl.

11th September, near Gilsland, Cumbria

168. short-eared owl *

Last edited by kb57 : Wednesday 13th September 2017 at 14:57.
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Old Wednesday 13th September 2017, 14:54   #41
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Just been puzzling over a discrepancy between Scythebill and the list I keep on here...hadn't added razorbill from my Coquet Island trip! A bonus species, which I'd overlooked probably because I'd normally have a visit to St. Abb's earlier in the year, and assumed they were already on the list...now I'm going to have to edit it in, or the numbering sequence will be wrong!
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Old Sunday 24th September 2017, 13:21   #42
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Early start this morning as I took my partner to the airport. Another few days before I join her in Portugal, and a last chance to focus on my UK list before we reach the end of September and the realisation that there are quite a few summer migrants I'm not going to get this year.
Had to go to the town today too, but managed a couple of hours at Druridge Bay first, including an hour's seawatch. Picked the lowest of low-hanging fruit from my still-to-see wildfowl list, but satisfyingly added another species which could so easily have got away this year.

24th September, Druridge Bay
169. common scoter
170. Arctic skua *

Scope views of a pale phase adult harrying gulls offshore before heading north. Some nice views of summer plumage & immature red-throated divers too, as well as the inevitable scoter flocks, plus gannets, shags, wigeon, and groups of auks flying way too far out to make out...though guillemot are prime suspects, with a group of three on the water a little closer in. The strengthening south-easterly may be making things more interesting for observers later in the day, but I think I need to go and lie down for a bit now and recover from my pre-dawn start!
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Old Wednesday 11th October 2017, 15:14   #43
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No more additions to the UK list due to being on holiday, a few 'world' list additions though...as before * = not seen last year, capitals = lifer
28th September: Santa Luzia, Portugal
greater flamingo, yellow-legged gull (although can't believe I didn't see one in Geneva...), Audouin's gull
29th September: Santa Luzia
Kentish plover, black-winged stilt
30th September: Santa Luzia
zitting Cisticola, Sardinian warbler, pied flycatcher, crested lark
1st October: Faro saltpans and golf course pond
SLENDER-BILLED GULL, Iberian magpie, WESTERN PURPLE SWAMPHEN, greenshank, booted eagle*
3rd October: Tavira
white stork, SPOTLESS STARLING
4th October: Sagres / pelagic
BALEARIC SHEARWATER, Cory's shearwater, great skua, European storm-petrel, Wilson's storm-petrel, sooty shearwater, (western) black redstart (ssp.*)
8th October, Faro
osprey*
According to Scythebill, that brings my 'world' year list to 199, although I wasn't really counting. 4 lifers weren't bad either- although I've almost certainly seen spotless starlings in the past, this is the first time I've properly 'seen' one, as in observed key features and listened to calls.

Good to catch up with pied flycatcher, greenshank, great skua and osprey somewhere this year, but a pity their chances of getting on my UK list are diminishing or have already disappeared...
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Old Monday 16th October 2017, 12:48   #44
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A number of years ago (early '90s I think) I turned up at a black-winged stilt twitch at Wallsend Swallow Ponds. The stilt was roosting at the time, head tucked in, and was trying its best to look uninteresting. Elsewhere on the pond was a veritable wader-fest...spotted redshank, curlew sandpipers actively feeding, the latter if my memory is correct still retaining some summer plumage. I pointed this out to the other birders, to be met with zero interest, as they focussed exclusively on the roosting stilt.
I recount this, because yesterday I did pretty much the same thing myself..went to a pond and focussed exclusively on the target species. By way of mitigation I had limited time in a weekend dominated by family commitments, and our target was doing a whole lot more than roosting. It was spinning around actively foraging, closely following shovelers which were presumably stirring up food items. I wish I'd had time to check there weren't any other waders about (particularly greenshank and little stint, for example!!), but it justified being the star attraction. Every species counts, but some are more equal than others...so...

15th October, Druridge Pools

171. red-necked phalarope * (1st WP**)

** I'd previously only seen a RNP in North America, and have only seen a Wilson's phalarope in Britain
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Old Friday 20th October 2017, 17:03   #45
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Working in Teesside today, and added one that I should've seen in the latter part of last winter, but didn't.

20th October, Eaglescliffe

172. redwing

Once I finished work, the relative proximity of RSPB Saltholme tempted me. Another species I should've had by now was quickly added. Year list species #3 of the day took a little more patience, but thanks to an Australian couple who picked it out, I managed distant but conclusive scope views...so...

RSPB Saltholme

173. pintail
174. little stint
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Old Monday 23rd October 2017, 13:52   #46
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After kick-starting my list before the weekend, 21st-22nd October didn't really pan out as planned...
As my partner reminded me, I'd explained to her a while ago that she would unfortunately have absolutely no chance of seeing a bee-eater this year...I was proven wrong at Druridge Pools on Saturday. Great to see, but it reminded me of why I don't really like twitching stray birds...unlike a collective breeding attempt in Nottinghamshire, seeing a lone young bee-eater in a blustery Druridge Bay in late October makes me worry about its welfare and chances of relocating to a more favourable climate. Guess I'm just a big softy at heart!
I hasten to add that I have nothing against twitching or twitchers per se...in fact people were really friendly and helpful, and I was as keen as anyone present to take my fill of this superb bird. Hopefully the north-westerly on Sunday gave it a tailwind to somewhere with a better flying insect biomass.
Sunday 22nd was a planned trip to Lindisfarne, hoping for YBW and maybe a 'proper' Canada or cackling goose. We managed to miss a ring ouzel that must've flown past us (probably whilst trying to photograph roe deer and struggling with the settings on my partner's Panny G5), the closest we got to the estimated 5 reported YBW was a goldcrest in the Straight Lonnen willows, and the G5's battery had predictably called it a day just before getting close views of a very dark and streaky looking redwing at the Snook. By the time we got to Budle Bay it held nothing but greylags and a couple of very robust looking Canada geese.
On looking at the Birding Frontiers redwing article, we concluded that our smudgy bird was probably just a Scandinavian, not an Icelandic bird, on the basis of white undertail coverts, and a well-defined white stripe on the lower breast.
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Old Monday 30th October 2017, 11:42   #47
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Family taxi duties gave me a free afternoon in Yorkshire on Saturday. I was intending to go to Blacktoft Sands to see if the curlew sandpiper reported earlier in the week was still there, then head across to Fairburn Ings to tick off willow tit. A quick check of a certain rival twitching service suggested an alternative, which paid off - I really like marsh terns, and also saw my second bittern of the year.

28th October, Potteric Carr

175. black tern *

Still time for a quick sprint back up the A1 to RSPB Fairburn Ings

176. willow tit

A couple of quick views at a grey squirrel and rat-infested feeding station didn't quite match the tern experience earlier. Caught the last of the light at the Lin Dyke hide in a vain search for a 2017 UK greenshank - wishing I'd spent more time trying to nail down the one I could hear calling at Druridge Pools a while back (it should be on my 'heard-only' list). Still, only 7 species to go now for my UK personal best...
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Old Monday 6th November 2017, 12:06   #48
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No time to get out much and watch birds last weekend, but thanks to BirdGuides we still managed to twitch two additions in Northumberland to my year list, both 'lifers' for my partner. It helped that we needed to go to Morpeth anyway, but we'd both probably have preferred a long coastal walk with the chance of a self-found snow bunting.

4th November, Linton

177. red-necked grebe *

Abbey Mill, Morpeth

178. hawfinch *

The RNG was the more satisfying, insofar as we had to actually locate the bird ourselves, although we'd never have stood a hope of seeing the hawfinch were it not for a particularly sharp-eyed individual amongst the assembled birders. 5 more needed...
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Old Thursday 9th November 2017, 14:43   #49
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I'll be working late tonight to compensate for my longer than usual lunch hour, but it was worth it for the chance to add a second phalarope to my list. The usual inverse relationship between availability of camera and closeness of view rule was operating - views were stunning.

9th November, South Shields

179. grey phalarope (UK *)

Makes up for not seeing a UK greenshank this year!
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Old Monday 13th November 2017, 11:46   #50
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Day trip up to Aberlady Bay on Saturday for a change of scene and coastal walk. Saw a bit less than last time we went (early 2016) - fewer fieldfares, no blackcaps, no Slavonian grebe in Gullane Bay. However, had the 'scope to hand to add what is I guess a nailed-on certainty for this site.

11th November, Gullane Point

180. velvet scoter
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