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Withymoor - Amblecote, Stourbridge..... (1 Viewer)

rollingthunder

Well-known member
Hi Pete -

I bumped into Craig Reed who said you had been 'active' locally;)

Captive is always a possibility but as Scoter are on the move and it is a non-breeding bird i have it pencilled as 'wild' - it might be easily viewable at a place like Withymoor but it has been decidedly skittish during it's tenure at Fens Pools...

Nice one with the Wood Sand - i had finished warming one of the benches at 9:C

Good birding -

Laurie:t:
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
No posts since Friday as little has been noted on a daily basis so a quick roundup...

Daily visits to Fens Pools to renew the LTD bond. It sits on the Middle Pool mud but has been seen over at Withymoor in the afternoons for those that have trouble clicking with it. I still hear upto 6 species of Warbler down there with both Whitethroats being prominent. All the Hirundines and upto 25 Swift most mornings. No fresh waders but a Wood Sandpiper put in a brief appearance on Sunday at 9:30 about half an hour after i left - typical:C Yesterday i bumped into Craig Reed for a brief chat - i hadn't seen him since the Withymoor Grey Phalarope!

Saturday in addition to the above i spent 2.5 hours over at Grimmers flushing nothing more than a startled Gary Palmer who i haven't seen for a coupla years or so. The Bee Orchids from the previous week had disappeared:C Presumably picked but i would not have thought by birders so i did not have a chance to check on the trollii 'Wasp' flower but i am happy that it was a variant as all the other flowers were fully out on the spike. Several other spikes are now out including 2 nice 9" tall specimens - those with a discerning eye will be rewarded. 3 each of Little Egret and Cuckoo were noted but i did not visit the White Hart pool so i did not hear any Cetti's.

Yesterday i also popped over to Shatterford via a different route listening out for Quail with no success. The Curlews were very active and the behaviour of the breeding pair suggests that all is well with the fledgeling young. No other species of interest i'm afraid. I returned via Whittington and Handkerchief Barn.

Good Birding -

Laurie:t:

Attached: bits n bobs from over the past few days.
 

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rollingthunder

Well-known member
'Appy as Larid.....

I didn't bother going out yesterday until 1430 timing it with the impending thunderstorm that might, just might, bring something of interest. A brief stop at Withymoor with the presence of the LTD not being noted or for that matter at any of the Fens Pools.....

1500-1630 was pleasant enough and although some impressive rumbling etc was all around it remained dry at FP - i love lightning but do not like being out in it so it was a compromise of sorts. The manhole covers were up and the locals with associated antics yielded enough material for a dedicated post at some stage.

In the absence of anything notable i turned, as is usually the case, to grilling the Gulls. About 50, mainly large spp, came and went ahead of the weather. All gathering on one bit of the Top Pool edge to bathe and socialise. Mainly LBB with a handful of Herring but also a couple of BH and a pair of adult plumage GBB passed thru without landing which was a nice surprise. The bird of interest joined the other 2 species and proceeded to ablute. One has to be wary of the light and how upperparts are represented particularly on a camera, tablet or PC. The mantle of this subadult bird was a distinct tone darker than Herring and half a tone lighter than LesserBB. Clean head and good driller and although the legs were not Yellow they were not fleshy-Pink.

My scattergun approach to ageing of this size ticked the 3cy for YLG unless it is a hybrid.....

Good birding -

Laurie:t:
 

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rollingthunder

Well-known member
Didn’t manage today Mark but i always check that small pool cuz ya never know:t: I still don’t know whether it has a name?

Laurie:t:
 

Phil Andrews

It's only Rock and Roller but I like it
I wouldn't have any concerns over the origins of the LTD - individuals were present regionally at Ripple / Clifton Pits and Branson Pits for several months each
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
It’s got a wild ‘rakish’ look to it and, for me, is genuine:t:

I will enquire as to why it is the ‘V’ pool. I have had both Common and Green Sandpipers in the past neither expected as there is no edge as such...

Good birding -

Laurie:t:
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
It's here.....

Two visits to Fens Pools on Sunday, 1 during the downpour, and from 6-8 ystda produced nothing of note but the LTD. The bird was present up on the lesser-known V pool c/w a 'ghillied up' sniper-stylee Tog blasting away for all he was worth. Yesterday morning back on its favoured bit of hallowed mud on the Middle pool. Still a good range of Warblers including at least 4 Lesser Whitethroats on each visit.....

But the big news is....................it's here!

I refer to my latest book. I do not buy many these days and those that i do invest in are usually field guides of one sort or another. I have the ones i need for my travels to either the Caucasus or Atlas but i do purchase them just to look at just in case i visit places like The 'Stans and beyond. The clock is ticking and i do not envisage straying outside of the Western Palearctic although both Iran and the USA are a possibility. I do not intend to visit countries where violence, looting and the breakdown of law and order is the norm so it looks like visiting Iran before the US.....;) I still buy Croom Helm type books that cover a group of birds most of which i am unlikely to see and guides to places where some of our rarest vagrants come from or are to be found on migration. I bought ones last year covering Israel and Oman and will acquire one of the new Mongolian guides shortly. One that has been on my 'must have' list has been the Guide to Western Palearctic passerines buy Shirahi and Svensson - listed at £150 it is now down to £115 but the Bride's son works at Waterstones and gets 50% off RRP so as soon as he is back in the store it will be ordered for the excellent price of £75:eek!:

My latest dropped thru the door yesterday afternoon. It is 'Morocco: sharing the birds' by the ground-breaking team at The Sound Approach. I have taken an interest in what they do ever since their inception but have not, thus far, purchased anything. This changed less than a week ago when perusing the Dutch Birding site and saw a snippet with regard to this book. I ordered a pre-publication discount copy at 50 quid inc postage and was surprised when it arrived only a few days later.

https://www.magornitho.org/2020/06/morocco-sharing-the-birds/

It is sumptuously illustrated with the teams’ photographs, mainly Arnoud van den Berg, sprinkled with anecdotes over 30 years and crammed full of all sorts or info on the latest breeders e.g. Golden Nightjar and Cricket Warbler to probably the extinct Slender-billed Curlew. Killian Mullarney has provided front and back cover illustrations and a stunning page of Wheatears. In addition there is a USB stick with loads of PDF files with further illustrations and nearly 1k sound recordings of calls and songs to go with the sonograms etc. All these can be viewed on a mobile smart-phone using ePub. The book also has a wealth of information on Mahgreb subspecies e.g. distribution and current status - there are a lot of subspp in the region, quite a few morphologically distinct not just biometrically.

I have been fortunate to visit Maroc 12 times over an 8 year period although have not been for 3 years. This will whet my appetite to return to this superb region and maybe revisit places like Dakhla, where you are basically in West Africa and Zagora where you are virtually in Algeria and as the sign says 'Timbuktu 100 days by Camel'. As i stop and bird around the hotels i still have a good number of species to catch up with. For anybody who hasn't been then i would urge a visit although bear in mind it can be 'Spain dirty' in places with the dropping of litter almost mandatory and access to Alcohol is limited despite the country being self-sufficient in both Beer and Wine.

I was fortunate to bump into Arnoud on my first trip some 10 years ago. He was leading one of the Limosa tours and i was stopping in Tamri - a lovely little coastal village famous for its thumb-sized Bananas. It also hosted a birders cafe in the 70's and still hosts the nearby Bald Ibis colony that feeds in the wetlands at the mouth of Oued Tamri. My first sighting of this species was from the Tamri Hotel when about 20 passed in front of my ‘bins.....on a seawatch:eek!: I had a brief chat c/w wild Waldrapp foraging and bathing some 200 yards away and he gave me one or two sites and said to make sure i saw the local Barbary Falcons as the site is a reliable place for 'pure' ones that will not be mistaken for 2 other races of Peregrine - duly noted and i had daily views of a hunting pair although i have seen them elsewhere since.

Good birding -

Laurie:t:

Attached: LTD and Tchakra...
 

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rollingthunder

Well-known member
Cheers Ian - yoom back on the Xmas card list;)

OS - ta:t: - i intend to find the first breeders in this part of the West Mids in the next 2 years. A pair 10 miles the other side of Bewdley is the nearest thus far but they have to be closer than that with the amount of wandering adult looking birds reported?

Good birding -

Laurie:t:
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
Spent the afternoon 1-4 to from and around Bartley...

I have never cycled there so i thought i would try a route from Stourbridge rather than up from Bittell in a car which is convoluted and ends up with us all over the place. 24 miles in total including 3 around the perimeter in glorious conditions. The picnic area is a good scoping point but Brumiggam’s finest with kids called Tyrone and Ronan were intent on providing background noise so i moved on sharply. I saw nothing of note hence the posting here and not on the dedicated thread.

I am glad that people regularly do Bartley and have done since Bill Oddie’s boyhood days but it’s not for me and i shall stick to visiting when something is found hence no visit since the ‘Beast of Bartley’ last Autumn:eek!:

The truth to be told is that i personally find most ‘Razzers’ pretty soulless places often devoid of edge or adjacent habitat and you spend time looking for dots on a large puddle. This is why my Chasewater and Blithers days are well behind me - i also do not like birding for extended periods thru a telescope although i possess 6 ranging from a cute 50mm Opticron, several 60mm and a ‘poor man’s Questar’ namely a mortar-sized Celestron 120mm with a minimum mag of 50mm:eek!:. There are exceptions and i am still fond of Belvide. To me it is about the right size and shape, has lots of habitat and the hides are good:t: I have spent many hours birding and bantering back in the days of Smallshire and Higgo - finishing with the latter in nearby Brewood imbibing in The Admiral Rodney PHB :)

I noted about 30 large Gulls and some Swifts - could somebody enlighten me as to where waders like these parties of Sanderling favour because i could not work out where the most likely spot would be? I tried to find a view over at Frankley but with no luck despite a public footpath and a coupla gates it led to the inevitable fence:C

It is a pity that a lot of these facilities do not embrace the birding community and allow some sort of viewing area so that scanning can take place - dedicated areas are set aside at UK military airbases e.g. Lakenheath, Mildenhall, Fairford etc etc - i have also had good birds whilst ‘spotting’.

Good birding -

Laurie:t:

Attached: Bartley route.
 

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the Harborne Flyer

Well-known member
Spent the afternoon 1-4 to from and around Bartley...

I have never cycled there so i thought i would try a route from Stourbridge rather than up from Bittell in a car which is convoluted and ends up with us all over the place. 24 miles in total including 3 around the perimeter in glorious conditions. The picnic area is a good scoping point but Brumiggam’s finest with kids called Tyrone and Ronan were intent on providing background noise so i moved on sharply. I saw nothing of note hence the posting here and not on the dedicated thread.

I am glad that people regularly do Bartley and have done since Bill Oddie’s boyhood days but it’s not for me and i shall stick to visiting when something is found hence no visit since the ‘Beast of Bartley’ last Autumn:eek!:

The truth to be told is that i personally find most ‘Razzers’ pretty soulless places often devoid of edge or adjacent habitat and you spend time looking for dots on a large puddle. This is why my Chasewater and Blithers days are well behind me - i also do not like birding for extended periods thru a telescope although i possess 6 ranging from a cute 50mm Opticron, several 60mm and a ‘poor man’s Questar’ namely a mortar-sized Celestron 120mm with a minimum mag of 50mm:eek!:. There are exceptions and i am still fond of Belvide. To me it is about the right size and shape, has lots of habitat and the hides are good:t: I have spent many hours birding and bantering back in the days of Smallshire and Higgo - finishing with the latter in nearby Brewood imbibing in The Admiral Rodney PHB :)

I noted about 30 large Gulls and some Swifts - could somebody enlighten me as to where waders like these parties of Sanderling favour because i could not work out where the most likely spot would be? I tried to find a view over at Frankley but with no luck despite a public footpath and a coupla gates it led to the inevitable fence:C

It is a pity that a lot of these facilities do not embrace the birding community and allow some sort of viewing area so that scanning can take place - dedicated areas are set aside at UK military airbases e.g. Lakenheath, Mildenhall, Fairford etc etc - i have also had good birds whilst ‘spotting’.

Good birding -

Laurie:t:

Attached: Bartley route.


From Scotland Lane nr the picnic site the occasional wader can be picked up on the opposite and quite distant shoreline, particularly on an obvious concete ramp almost at mid-point on the shoreline . A closer view can be had by going round to the dam on Genners Lane and looking down the shoreline.

Beyond the dam there is a gap in a stone wall where you can access the grassy/scrubby area which leads you to a point where you can see the previously mentioned ramp and get quite close views of LRP and common sand without spooking them because you're looking through a wire fence
A third option is a gap in the far southern corner nr to the Scotland Lane/Frankley Lane T junction where again you can scan some of the shoreline by looking over the fence. It's not ideal and can be a hard slog but it's all there is if you live round here.
 

the Harborne Flyer

Well-known member
Cheers for that - agreed, make the most. If i lived near i would be there daily at least once:t:

Laurie:t:

One of my pals has been birding here for over 40 years and has recorded 184 species including fulmar and a lot of wader species. But there's also hundreds or possibly thousands of visits where he has seen nothing but a few gulls ,mallards and crows.
 

rollingthunder

Well-known member
Same at Fens Pools mate but bumped into a bloke a couple of months ago who has been birding it for 60+ years - he has had Great and iirc the only accepted record of LTSkua in West Midlands county:eek!: He and his mate found breeding Red-backed Shrike a year *after* the last supposed breeders at Doulton’s Claypit by Saltwells Wood!

Bartley does well but it is down to coverage...

Same with Withymoor but Grey Phalarope and LTDuck in 18 months:eek!:

They all have to be patched regularly to glean the goodies;)

Good birding -

Laurie:t:
 
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