Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Midweek Murmurings

I haven't really been birding as such this week, but I have been doing some associated work and picking up a few birds. On Monday (16th) I was with AG from the RSPB on Freckleton Marsh pegging out ditches for the RSPB's ditcher to create. I didn't get any photographs of it in action on Freckleton Marsh but below is a shot of it in action at Cockerham last year. By the end of yesterday it had created 4.8 km of 3 m wide ditches and hopefully it will have created a further 1 km today. The idea of course is to improve the habitat for breeding waders on the marsh and I'll keep you posted on here as to how that goes.

Of course when you are out and about all day you do pick up some birds and of interest we had a juv Marsh Harrier, 2 Buzzards, Stock Dove and 10 Skylarks. The Stock Dove flushed from under the concrete bridge across the dyke and I have seen Stock Dove fly from here in the past. Underneath the bridge the dyke is faced with stone and presumably it provides a suitable nest site.

On Monday evening Ian and I cleared the net rides at Rossall School in preparation for the autumns ringing. We are hoping to start this weekend so I'll let you know how we get on. We didn't have much whilst we hard at work other than a male Sparrowhawk that upset all the local Swallows and House Martins.

Her indoors and I had a walk along the coast last night and we walked along the sea wall past Rossall School. Two Wheataears were in the field and 45 Oystercatchers roosted on the playing fields waiting for the tide to drop so that they could continue feeding.


Today I was surveying on Saddleworth Moor. There was a lack of quantity of birds, but there was some quality. The first birds I had were a party of 5 Ravens drifting along an escarpment calling occasionally as they did. I think Ravens are fantastic birds so I was pleased to see another 2 later in the day.

Meadow Pipits were everywhere, but I only had 1 Skylark. Close to an old quarry I had 2 Wheatears along with a juvenile Whinchat. I don't see Whinchats that often, other than on the coast in spring, so I was particularly pleased to see this bird. The only other bird of note I had was a Kestrel.


I was informed the other day that another local blogger was bemoaning the fact that I had "strongly criticised" the fact that local birders had been visiting a juvenile Cuckoo at Cocker's Dyke. I think this person, whoever they are, have been totally missing the point. My gripe is that a lot of birders today behave like sheep waiting for someone else to find birds so they can go and look at them instead of getting off their fat lazy arses and finding their own birds! They also seem to want a list of 'target' birds (absolutely awful phrase) to try and see when they go birding. Who finds these target birds? They certainly don't! And if you haven't seen a juvenile Cuckoo before you obviously don't do enough birding!

Fingers crossed for some good weekend weather.


Newton Stringer said...

I think you made a perfectly valid point in your cuckoo post...... Some people just go wherever their pager/i-phone tells them, it's pathetic...... As you say, they are flocking sheep !

I think the whole idea of year listing is ridiculous.... a totally pointless exercise !!
It's all about competing with other stupid fuckers in a “I’ve seen more birds than you” competition....

These people need to get a life, get a local patch, discover the joy of finding their own birds, and then they might actually contribute something to the local birding scene, and earn a bit of respect....

Oh, and while I'm off on one, I may as well mention that....... I think people who find it impossible to put their stupid noisy bleeping pagers on silent mode, and also people who tape lure birds are fucking idiots !

Right.... I'm off to lie down in a dark room, and think calm thoughts.....

Fleetwood Birder said...

I couldn't agree more!