Sunday, 9 January 2011

Nearly Thwarted by Pinkies Again

It was a beautiful morning as I headed across Rawcliffe Moss to the feeding station. It was a touch windy from the west, but I was blessed with glorious sunshine. As I headed down the track a group of 11 Corn Buntings went over giving their nondescript but memorable call! If you know the call of a Corn Bunting you will know what I mean by that.

I could see that Pink-footed Geese were dropping into the top field close to the plantation and I thought that my attempts to walk up to the plantation would be thwarted for the second time this week. However, as I just about reached the feeding station I could see about 1,500 'Pinkies' lift into the air and move off. Something had obviously flushed them, but I don't know what. In total I had 2,102 Pinkies in various flock sizes throughout the morning.


At the feeding station were 137 Tree Sparrows, 3 Corn Buntings, 12 Yellowhammers and 16 Chaffinch. I had 2 Kestrels on my walk and the only other raptor I had was a single Buzzard being mobbed, as usual, by Corvids. I headed up the '97' hedge towards the wild bird seed plot and I had 8 Stock Doves fly over, which is the most I have seen for a long time.


A number of Reed Buntings, 6 in all, were along the hedge and when I got to the Badger set I flushed 23 Red-legged Partridges. These were obviously release birds by the Gamekeepers. Thirteen Chaffinch were perched in the Birch trees at the Badger set along with 2 Linnets.

I had a walk round the wild bird seed plot and flushed 28 Skylarks, 4 Reed Buntings, 22 Linnets and 6 Corn Buntings. I had a walk into the L Wood on my way to the plantation and flushed a Woodcock and then I had a group of 5 Roe Deer running across the stubble fields.

Roe Deer

It was fairly quiet in the plantation until I got to the pond and I noticed some small birds feeding along the edge of the still frozen water. Lifting my bins I could see they were a flock of 11 Chaffinch with a stonking male and female Brambling. They spotted me and flew up into one of the Alders. I could only assume that they were foraging for Alder seeds that had fallen onto the ice and would be easy to obtain.

My walk back to the car was fairly bird less other than more 'Pinkies', a flock of 150 Jackdaws and a single Cormorant heading west which is a good record for the Moss.

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