About Me

I am a novice to birding and have become interested since walking Frank our dog, a cross Flat Coat / Springer around Hastings Country Park and the surrounding area, I realised the little brown birds weren't just sparrows.

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Snow Redwings and things

With the cold and wintery weather continuing, temperatures dropping, and regular snow showers work has been out of the question. Tuesday lunchtime was a walk along the beach from the Smuggler to Pett Pools, on the sea there were several rafts of Great Crested Grebes the larget I counted 54, in the distance a raft of ducks and possibly only Widgeon. On the Pools a couple hundred more along with a hundred Coote taking up the only bit unfrozen, in the distance Greylags and Canada Geese but too far away to recognise any White Fronted amoungst them. The cream headed Marsh Harrier put in an appearance. A heavy snow shower curtailed the visit. Wednesday saw more snow showers.

Thursday awoke to blue skies and snow everywhere A party of 6 Redwings were in the garden cherry tree, a first since we have been here but no signs of Fieldfare that have been reported all along the coast.

With the sun shining I set off for Castle Water, first bird to see was a hansome male Green Woodpecker sitting on a fence post followed by a very friendly Robin who refused to give me a Xmas card photo. At the view point very little showed except a party of Long Tailed Tits.
 Along the path to the hide two pairs of Stonechats and several Meadow Pipits were forageing in the grass tufts not covered with snow. On arrival at the hide a blizzard came from nowhere which took away all distant viewing. Apart from the usual ducks and geese a Little Grebe caught a small fish, there was no sign of the Smew but a Bittern took flight across the water in front of the hide and as the snow eased off a Water Rail made a quick dash from left to right in front of me. Good couple of hours birding.

Friday brought snow showers off and on all day but it wasn't till the night that a depth built up to 3" .

Saturday morning brought the first Fieldfare into the garden with another half a dozen or so Redwings. 11am we set off for Pett  to collect emergency provisions of eggs and milk, continually overhead was the chak chak chak sound of the Fieldfares and Redwings in one garden there must have been an assortment of 20 -30 Another unusual sight was in the horse paddock off Rosemary lane the Meadow Pipits were literally following in the horses footsteps pecking in the disturbed turf for insects and worms

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