Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

15
Sep
22

Autumnal Visitor

The lack of steeply wooded valleys contributes to the lack of breeding Pied Flycatchers in the East of England. Although they have bred in a couple of coastal locations in the past in Norfolk they are mainly known as an autumn migrant. Last week a splattering of what were presumably Scandinavian birds occurred along the coast. This particular bird made Beeston Heath, just up the road from us, its temporary home for a few days.

26
Jun
22

Upcoming Events

You may be interested in joining one of a couple of Butterfly Walks I will be doing for ‘Friends of Train Wood’ in Norwich over the next few months. Both are free to join but require you to apply for a ticket.

Marriott’s Way Butterfly Walk with Carl Chapman Tickets, Mon 25 Jul 2022 at 13:00 | Eventbrite

Marriott’s Way Butterfly Walk with Carl Chapman (August) Tickets, Sat 13 Aug 2022 at 13:00 | Eventbrite

08
Jun
22

Butterfly Day

When we go to Lincolnshire on a Butterfly Day … it’s not just butterflies we see. Current Clearwing Moth.

19
May
22

What colours a head

Quite a few flava wagtails moving through at the moment. Several Grey and Blue headed scattered around the cattle in the fields down the lane. This Grey headed (thunbergi) came as close for me as it was going to, before skipping off through the flowers.

A regular site for them at West Runton. I photographed them here last year https://wildcatchphotography.zenfolio.com/p912769488/h9f653693

20
Dec
21

Turning Over

The photographs I’ve taken this year will soon be turning over and disappearing into annals of the Wildcatch Photography site; they won’t be available to view in the one place under the ‘Latest Photograph’ section.

So if you would like to take a browse of the latest photos please do so now … I hope you enjoy them.

https://wildcatchphotography.zenfolio.com/p34814967

02
Dec
21

Escaping the weather

I could tell our second trip to Wales in November was going to be a bit chancy with the weather. Even the week before the forecast was showing there was going to be heavy winds. When we set off last Saturday morning we didn’t realise we had perhaps missed the worst of it.

As we wended our way across the Midlands, through snow, conditions gradually improved. By the time we got to Powys it was bright sunshine. Judging by the bits of trees scattered around the worst of Storm Arwen had already passed through.

As usual lots of Kites to photograph.

The weather on Sunday was better still. It even felt warm in a few sheltered spaces.

26
Nov
21

Look-up

On Saturday I held a ‘cetacean workshop’ in the reserve centre at Cley NWT. It was a good interactive group of interesting people. The morning was classroom based and after lunch we went down to the ‘beach hotel’ to look for a few porpoise out at sea. We unfortunately didn’t see any and guests gradually bid their farewell, but there were a few birds passing to keep interest high. As the light was failing the Black Guillemot that had been moving up and down the coast for the past week or so sailed-by. All the remaining guests managed to get onto it and have a good look through the scope. Some compensation at least for the absence of porpoise.

I took a few record shots as the bird bobbed and dived in the swell. I wasn’t expecting anything spectacular given the distance and the failing light. I put the camera away and took the opportunity to look at the bird through the scope myself. It was then I saw it tilt its head sideways and look up. I’ve seen many birds do this over the years and it’s always indicative of them seeing a raptor above. However, I’ve never seen any species of auk do it previously … and I’ve seen a lot of auks.

Following the guillemots line of sight I looked up myself and very high above us was a Short eared Owl coming in off the sea. Seeing an owl come in-off is always good; a treat in itself. The owl spilled air from it’s wings and steeply dropped down onto the marsh behind us.

I pondered on the fact that the two species, Black Guillemot and Short eared Owl, would rarely be in the same environment and have a chance to interact. So how did the auk know the Short eared Owl was a threat? I guess it is just hard-wired into most birds that birds of prey, whatever the species, are just not good news.

24
Nov
21

Proud

So proud to see Holly graduate, with honors, last week. She’s come a long way … but was always ‘the performer’.

21
Nov
21

A little history and a bird and site revisited.

It’s been a long, long time since I was at Blacktoft Sands on the Humber; perhaps thirty years or more. A visit to Leeds to see Holly graduate was an opportunity to call at this RSPB reserve I once so frequently visited.

Blacktoft is an hours drive from Darrington on the A1, where I used to live. Fairburn Ings, Potteric Carr Blacktoft and Spurn were regular haunts.

The White-tailed Lapwing that had been seen briefly at Stodmarsh, Kent in June this year had made its way to Blacktoft on the 26th August. It more or less took up residence but was no longer being reported however I guessed it may still be in the area. So, a visit was planned to break up the journey North last week.

This is a species that has only ever occurred in the UK a handful of times, but I had seen one that previously turned up at Leighton Moss in Lancashire during June 2007 after I had missed it at Caerlaverock in Dumfries and Galloway the previous week. However, it would be a new bird for Tania.

Visiting the reserve brought back a lot of memories. The hides and layout of the place hadn’t changed much. It didn’t take long to find the Lapwing feeding and sleeping in front of Xerox hide. I saw it much closer that I’d seen one previously, so managed to get a few acceptable photos. We concluded that it was one of the best birds we had seen for a while and spent a couple of hours in its company before heading off West.

We also took in a little bit of history by calling in at nearby Whitgift to see the Church. Lord how we laughed … Ha Ha.

19
Nov
21

Fallow

A wonderful fallow stag on the ‘Wild Ken Hill’ estate the other week. Even if he was a little lob-sided. Tours are available here https://wildkenhill.co.uk/




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