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CactusD's List 2010 (1 Viewer)

CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Back from the trip, but still more birding to be done!
Looking around the local blogs for info, I decided that a trip to Farmoor this afternoon - after a long absence - might pick up some migrants. On my way back from the hide and causeway, where I had a pair of linnets and a couple of white wagtails among the pieds, other birders pointed me in the direction of the water treatment works for Yellow Wagtails. There were about five or six, I reckon, busy eating the truly massive mosquitos :eek!:. Got one or two pics. Also picked up my first Swallow of the year.

Hence:
106. Barn Swallow
107. Yellow Wagtail (flavissima)
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A trip to the local Grimsbury Reservoir this afternoon picked up another Yellow Wag, a couple more White Wags, hirundines in the form of House Martins, Sand Martins, and Swallows, a single Common Sandpiper; a Willow Warbler was heard but not seen. Hence a couple more ticks:

[Willow Warbler H]
108. House Martin
109. Common Sandpiper
 

CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
And a brief trip to Otmoor this afternoon with Maenad, baby, and pram picked up Little Egret. Also great views of nesting Lapwings mobbing a Red Kite.

110. Little Egret
 

CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A trip to Brandon Marsh this afternoon picked up a couple more birds (since I've only been a birder for a couple of years, both UK ticks for me - seen previously only in Sweden and/or Cyprus):

111. Little Ringed Plover
112. Green Sandpiper
 

CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Had a nice couple of hours at Brandon Marsh this afternoon while mum was out with baby. Main aim was to get a sighting or shot of the reported Lesser Spotted Woodpecker. I had a fleeting view of a female bird flying past, then heard a bird calling later in the afternoon on my way back. No shots unfortunately, but it looks like another visit should be necessary before the leaves come on the trees. Also, I did manage a few shots of one or two of the other birds, inc. a couple of Little Ringed Plovers.

113. Lesser Spotted Woodpecker
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Report of Avocet at Brandon Marsh took us there for a couple of hours this afternoon to pick up a lifer. Asleep, and then awake, on the mud in the centre of East Marsh Pool. Also finally had Willow Warbler!

114. Willow Warbler
115. AVOCET

A couple of record shots below:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A short visit to Otmoor later yesterday afternoon brought me three more ticks. A Cetti's Warbler erupted from a bush in front of me and then flew into another thicket, so I didn't have to wait for a couple of hours trying to locate one. Sedge Warblers were bursting out in song from the reeds along the path, though it took quite a while to find one. And Whitethroats were calling and chasing each other about in the Blackthorn along the path from the carpark. A few record shots of what was about below.

116. Sedge Warbler
117. Cetti's Warbler
118. Common Whitethroat
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
I was in Oxford this morning, so a quick trip to Port Meadow to pick up the Godwits was in order. Four birds obliged, in beautiful summer plumage, and there was a bonus in the form of a pair of Common Terns perched on some mud. Other things about on the meadow were Shoveler, Gadwall, Teal, Wigeon, Grey Heron, Lapwing, Oystercatcher (2), Shelduck (1). Hence:

119. Black-Tailed Godwit
120. Common Tern

A few lousy phone-scoped pics below:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A late afternoon visit to Otmoor in search of warblers didn't produce any new ticks - though I did hear Grasshopper Warblers and a Cuckoo:

Grasshopper Warbler H
Cuckoo H

-

but I did get a few decent shots of a few of the smaller residents! :t: Some shots below:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Managed to fit in a relatively quick visit to Otmoor in this afternoon - weather forecast for weekend not great, and we have visitors in any case. Good decision, since we managed some sun and blue sky as well as heavy cloud and some showers.
We also managed some great birds, including lifer for me with Turtle Dove - a bird I had been unlucky to miss out on last year. Warblers were tricky to locate because of the wind, but we also managed to find some Reed Warblers. Lots of hirundines about, including Swifts. No sign of Hobby or Cuckoo unfortunately, but we'll be back soon no doubt.

121. Common Swift
122. Reed Warbler
123. TURTLE DOVE

Quite pleased with the pics I got since conditions were hit and miss:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Apologies for the lack of activity recently: work has been getting in the way.
However, I did manage to get a couple of visits in to get some more birds. Went to Aston Rowant last week for Red Kite photos, and Otmoor yesterday to get Hobby and Marsh Harrier. Trying to get decent pics of Hobby in flight with 600mm+1.4x teleconverter on a 1.5x crop body (D300) is very tricky because of narrow field of view, but I did get one shot I'm happy with! I need more practice...

124. Hobby
125. Marsh Harrier

Will post one or two more shots later.
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Some more shots from yesterday:
Is that the remains of a Lapwing chick I see in the Kite's talons, I wonder?
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Had a nice hour yesterday at Boddington Res. taking shots of the Great Crested Grebes. Nothing much else about apart from a couple of Common Terns. More of a photography trip for me than a list-ticking exercise, anyhow; hopefully the results speak for themselves!
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A sunny Otmoor today produced a lifer in the form of a very distant Spoonbill, and the new scrapes by the new hide seem to be coming up trumps with some more waders - my first LRPlover at Otmoor, and reports of Greenshank and Black-Tailed Godwit (though I didn't see these). Managed to pish a Reed Warbler, and though I got close views and shots, these were somewhat obscured, as you may observe below! Also heard Cuckoo and Grasshopper Warbler, but I haven't seen these yet this year.

126. SPOONBILL
[Cuckoo H]
[Grasshopper Warbler H]
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Nothing new to post, but I've just been playing in the back garden with my new little photographic toys, a flash bracket and flash extender. I also got myself a bag hide - sort of a camouflaged old-fashioned photographer's cape/cover, to cover me and my tripod while out shooting. My wife thinks this looks particularly hilarious! :-O :frog: (always wanted to use this smiley!)
Anyway, a few shots below of the common garden birds round about, all with fill-flash except the sparrow, at various settings to experiment according to light and distance. Definitely helped with shots 1 and 4 - 1 taken in shade against the light, with 4 makes the pigeon 'pop' that little bit more - but not so much with the other two.

All I need now is some decent exciting birds to take pics of! ;)
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Still nothing new, but I thought I'd share some more Reed Warbler photos from Otmoor :king:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Corn Buntings

With a spare couple of hours this afternoon I decided on an extended patch walk without the camera gear, to see if I could relocate last year's Corn Buntings. Came up trumps with one seen and a couple heard, plus a pair of Reed Buntings and lots of Yellowhammers, so all three regular Bunting species; three Yellow Wagtails and some very good close views of perched Skylark rounded off a nice farmland set.
Also had a bonus in the form of Common Sandpiper which I flushed from some canal workings. |=)|

127. Corn Bunting
 

CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
A nice trip to Otmoor picked up Garden Warbler in good numbers - funny that I hadn't seen any yet this year, then four or five come along at once. Three or four Dunlins were on the scrape with a couple of Ringed Plovers and a Redshank; five or six Little Egrets too. Managed a couple of shots of the warblers. Also a Common Blue butterfly posed briefly for a photo.

128. Garden Warbler
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Went back to the Corn Buntings location this afternoon (barley fields down public footpath behind Bannatyne's Health Club in Bodicote, for anyone local); I thought the rain had stopped. If you see the pic below, you'll see that it hadn't... :-O
This one appeared along the track only about 5 mins walk along from the road: as usual, heard it before I saw it. Not the best shot, but my mind was partly on not getting the gear too wet; would have got more if the rain had eased, but sadly it didn't.
On my way along, also saw a pair of Red-legged Partridges, which is new for the local patch, so I think that calls for a patch list update, which I'll post later.
Cheers for reading!
D:t:
 

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CactusD

ἀρχός οἰ&#969
Patch List Update

Here's a complete list of the species I've seen (or heard) in the local area (fields and canalside around Bodicote/south side of Banbury; not including Grimsbury Reservoir), over the last two years. It's quite well worked by the local dog-walking fraternity and a little underwatched now that I have a car, so I'm quite pleased with this total:

1) Cormorant
2) Grey Heron
3) Mute Swan
4) Mallard
5) Common Buzzard
6) Sparrowhawk
7) Common Kestrel
8) Pheasant
9) Moorhen
10) Lapwing
11) Common Snipe
12) Black-headed Gull
13) Herring Gull
14) Stock Dove
15) Wood Pigeon
16) Collared Dove
17) Little Owl
18) Common Swift
19) Kingfisher
20) Green Woodpecker
21) Great Spotted Woodpecker
22) Skylark
23) Barn Swallow
24) House Martin
25) Meadow Pipit
26) Pied Wagtail
27) Wren
28) Dunnock
29) Robin
30) Song Thrush
31) Redwing
32) Mistle Thrush
33) Fieldfare
34) Blackbird
35) Common Whitethroat
36) Sedge Warbler
37) Willow Warbler
38) Chiffchaff
39) Goldcrest
40) Great Tit
41) Coal Tit
42) Blue Tit
43) Long-tailed Tit
44) Eurasian Treecreeper
45) Magpie
46) Jay
47) Jackdaw
48) Rook
49) Carrion Crow
50) Starling
51) House Sparrow
52) Chaffinch
53) Brambling
54) Linnet
55) Goldfinch
56) Greenfinch
57) Siskin
58) Bullfinch
59) Reed Bunting
60) Yellowhammer
61) Corn Bunting
62) Garden Warbler
63) Tawny Owl (H)
64) Yellow Wagtail
65) Hobby
66) Coot
67) Little Grebe
68) Grey Partridge
69) Stonechat
70) Common Crossbill
71) Nuthatch
72) Grey Wagtail
73) Lesser Black-backed Gull
74) Blackcap
75) Common Sandpiper
76) Red-legged Partridge
 
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