Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Where is the sunshine and the birds?

Two days in a row I have been out for a stroll and totally thwarted by the weather ... grey overcast with damp breezes in the air .... plus very little avian activity to even think about getting the camera out!

Monday (early pm) was another dull and deathly quiet visit to Thursley Common.
I trudged across the boardwalks, over and around Shrike Hill, searching every probable perching post but no sign of the Great Grey Shrike that has been sighted very recently. Apart from 6 or 7 Goldcrests seen feeding just after leaving the car park; Great Spotted Woodpecker tapping and the scolding call of a Stonechat there was very little else to maintain any
Stonechat there was very little else to maintain any enthusiasm for my 3rd unsuccessful search of this elusive bird. The only thing that caught the lens of my new S95 was the hoof-shaped bracket fungi (Polyporus betulinus) that can be seen throughout the common colonizing much of the dead and decaying birch trees following the last devastating fire.
I then drove over to Cutt Mill Pond in the hope of spotting the resident Mandarins but much of the water was frozen and only a Grey Heron and a Coot showed itself.

Today (Wednesday) I drove southwards to Pulborough Brooks RSPB Reserve more in hope than anticipation that the male Hen Harrier that has appeared fairly regularly might show itself but again I guess the elements were against that happening ... grey skies and a strong wind again .... and it didn't appear! 
The flooded brooks were teaming with Wigeon, Teal, Pintail, Mallard, Shoveler and Lapwing plus a few Shelduck. At one stage the wildfowl and Lapwing all took to the air but I couldn't locate the offending intruder ... probably a low flying Sparrowhawk or Merlin which also sent the Godwits packing before I could get to them. A good number of Redwing around the reserve but only a handful of Fieldfares. So again the only objects that got in range of the lens were Wigeon, the Highland beasts grazing and finally a pleasant 15 minutes watching 3 males and 2 female Bullfinch feeding.

So where will I head for tomorrow .... it all depends on the weather again!    FAB.

13 comments:

  1. Hi Frank ..just be happy you can be heading, and it is only dreary..if you was here you would have to get through 24 inches of snow. thats what we have gotten since yesterday morning(Tuesday)plus whats already on the ground!!
    I enjoyed your photos, I am interested in all nature..the fungi,the birds all great photo's!!
    If I could sketch, that tall bare tree would be a great subject!!

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  2. Now that was quite an outing! Too bad the weather didn't cooperate a little more. You still have some interesting photos there. Those Highland beasts are pretty neat critters.

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  3. Looks like we are all suffering with a touch of ths blues and greys at the moment Frank, just hang in there things can only get better.

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  4. I think that it will get back together in time, but, you did catch the Bullfinch, and cows bowing to you.

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  5. This winter season has been especially dreary for many of us. Photography opportunities are few and far bewtween with so much inclement weather. That said, your photos are still lovely. Nature is beautiful throughout all the seasons. I enjoyed viewing the Highland beasts and Bullfinches ... creatures I don't have a chance to see here in the US midwest. Hoping a little sunshine finds its way to you soon!

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  6. The sun was here today Frank :-) I'll be gone tomorrow though. I know what it's like to be out on those dull dreary days :-)

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  7. Amazing funghi! Although the day was grey I like the colours in these shots.

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  8. Hi Grammie. Yes, I know I shouldn't grumble and I wouldn't want your weather over here right now. The same tree was seen in sunshine at last today.

    Hi Mona. The Highland cattle do a very job at keeping the damp pasure in good fettle.

    Hi Monty. Sunshine today but changeable again tomorrow!

    Cheers Bob.

    Hi Julie. Thanks. Hopefully sometime I'll get even closer to the Bullfinch.

    Hi Warren. Old hat to the intrepid daily patchwalker!

    Hi JM. All manner of sizes and shapes everywhere.

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  9. Looks like a very scenic place a great for birding. Sorry the weather did not cooperate.

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  10. It's started raining again over here too. Nature striking us back?

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  11. Hi Eileen. Best in the Spring and Summer. Typical English weather and we always complain!!

    Hi Amila. One step forward and two back I think. Stay dry!!

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  12. I am up against the same thing here, Frank, only snowier and colder I think! Good luck to us both and pray for an early spring!

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  13. Hi kathie. I think you definitely have the more difficult conditions at the moment. Yeah .. roll on Spring for us both.

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