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Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Red Kite Roost

Last week I went over to Thornley Woods area  via Shibdon Pond and Far Pastures, I checked out the old Stone bridge near the roundabout just along from Shibdon  I usually have Dipper ,Kingfisher and Grey wagtail  here but today nothing and heading to the pond I could see it was mainly frozen with a small area at the south end open but I went into the hide and gave it about 45mins in the hope of a Water Rail perhaps below the hide , checking out the gulls near the open water for perhaps a white winger or especially a Yellow legged Gull as the odd one has been reported here but only the  common varieties of Great Black backed, Herring ,Black headed and Common Gulls . A single Redwing on the grass area as it fed below the trees. From here I headed to Far Pastures the track down had 2 Goldcrests and 3-4 Coal Tit  just at the carpark a Nuthatch got my attention as it worked its way along branches coming tantalisingly nearer and nearer before flitting off before I could focus on it . A willow Tit did the same flitting towards me but always with branches in the way , then it would sit in a nice pose and just as I got on it off it went , so for the sake of my sanity I went in the hide for my coffee etc:. Surprised to see about half was free water with about 15 teal , a pair of Bullfinch in the background and Fieldfares on the tree tops no Water Rail back outside I saw my first Red Kite of the day  it was way off and already the light fading ,no chance of flight shots today , I started to slowly walk towards the viaduct more Bullfinches and a Treecreeper before I was out onto the viaduct with 3-4 kites coming in they started to settle on the trees rather quickly there was to be no flying overhead today I must have had about 15 in total but by this time I was frozen stiff  so started to make the climb back up to the road I saw a couple of birds through the trees before it became to thick , it was still a good end to the day , I will return about mid Feb  perhaps they will be more active and in better light.
 The ever gorgeous Nuthatch , when I first started birding  the place to go was that huge tree in the carpark at Wallington where your first sighting could virtually be guaranteed from the comfort of the car !!!!
 Redwing feeding amongst the leave litter
 Very Confiding Dunnock complete with bling as where all the birds at far pastures carpark
 Willow Tit
 Red Kite over the valley
Snow covered Lichen
The best I could get of the red Kites , but even so they are a fantastic spectacle as the gather before dropping down to roost , apparently they sometimes have a pre roost , so will all settle before heading off to roost , you have to check it out if youv'e not been , it's a birding must   !!!!!

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