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Saturday, December 17, 2011


Images of a visit to Costa Rica can be seen by clicking on the relevant entry in the GALLERY on the right hand side of this page.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Visit to St Margaret's Church, Cley, Norfolk

White-crowned Sparrow immortalised in a stained-glass West window in Cley's Church.

The day began with a trip to Norfolk to see a Semi-palmated Sandpiper which we had previously 'seen' but at a vast distance. The visit  was to 'confirm' our tick and also to appreciate the the finer ID points.

On interrogating the Internet ,during our journey, to find out if any other interesting species were around we noticed that the Semi P had been potentially upgraded to the Megaspecies-----a Western Sandpiper.

The 'new' bird was duly observed at Cley Marshes.

An ordinary birding day was therefore transformed to a Congratulatory Mega day.

In thanks for this transformation we decided to visit St Margaret's church in Cley  to offer our Gratitude to the Great Ornithologist in the Heavens for sending us this rarity.

Whilst in the church we hunted for and eventually found ( the sign of persistent birders) the small painting of the rare White -crowned Sparrow which visted Cley from North America in January 2008 and which was reponsible for donations in excess of £ 6,300 which was used for the 13th century church's West window restoration

Monday, November 28, 2011

Monday, October 03, 2011

Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane. This was our first opportunity to nail this North American Crane on its travels south from Aberdeenshire.
Taken at Boyton Marshes, Suffolk through the heat haze

Sunday, September 25, 2011

American Black Tern

Juvenile American Black Tern at Covenham Reservoir, Lincs.

Monday, September 19, 2011


The Lesser Kestrel was only one of the 120 species,  including 21 lifers, seen during a 5 day tour of Southern Spain centered on the charming old town of Tarifa in early September 2011.

The main prpose of this trip was to witness the migration into Africa from mainland Europe.

In addition to the photographs included we also saw the following key species---Audouin's and Slender-billed Gull, Griffon Vulture, Black Stork, Black Shouldered Kite, Black-eared Wheatear and Blue Rock Thrush.
Dipping on both Lesser Crested and Elegant Terns, Spanish Imperial Eagle and Azure winged Magpie may necessitate a return visit!
A mixture of Birds, Beer and Beatiful Scenery can only hearten the Inner Self of the older Generation!


The ubiquitous Stonechat, male

Ruppell's Vulture

Distant record shot of a probable Ruppell's Vulture.
Tarifa Southern Spain

Woodchat Shrike

 Woodchat Shrike, male.
Tarifa Southern Spain

Montagu's Harrier

Female Montagu's Harrier
Tarifa Southern Spain

European Bee-eater

We encountered many 'swarms',containing up to 40 individuals, of these Bee-eaters
Tarifa Southern Spain

Rufous Bush Robin

A distant record shot of a Rufous Bush Robin ssp Galactotes. One of the best finds of the trip.
Tarifa Southern Spain

Egyptian Vulture

Egyptian Vulture
Tarifa Southern Spain

Short-toed Eagle

Tarifa Southern Spain
 Short-toed Eagle.

Black Kite


Black Kite. Only a small number of Red Kites were seen. Often in excess of ten Black Kites were seen at one time.
Tarifa Southern Spain


Swallowtail butterfly of the race gorganus which is supposedly slighly paler than our race britannicus.
Tarifa Southern Spain

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Bonelli's Eagle

Juvenile Bonelli's Eagle

The initial ID as a Booted Eagle was questioned by Mac Bell; further investigations led to the Andalucian Bird Society confirming it is a Juvenile Bonelli's Eagle. A Key find for the trip. Thanks Mac.

Tarifa, Southern Spain

White Storks

For me the highlight of the trip was witnessing in excess of 400 White Storks attempting to cross the 14 miles across the Straits from Tarifa to Morocco. On the third attempt they decided to 'go for it' having turned back for reasons of elevation, wind etc.on two previous occassions.
Tarifa, Southern Spain

Booted Eagle

Pale Morph Booted Eagle
Tarifa Southern Spain

Red-necked Nightjar

Red-necked Nightjar. Following the finding of a road-killed Red-necked Nightjar in mid afternoon it was decided to stay in the vicinity until nightfall in the hope of seeing a live one.Not only did we see one but about seventeen others evenly spaced along the same stretch of road apparently warming themselves on the road surface.
This photograph was taken using the mini bus's headlights as illumination but did require an ISO setting of 6500!
Tarifa, Southern Spain

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Slender-billed Gull

1st winter Slender-billed Gull
Tarifa, Southern Spain

Red-veined Darters

Female & Male Red-veined Darter. These are frequent migrants to southern Britain .
Tarifa, Southern Spain

Little Swift

Distant record shot of a Little Swift near Chipiona, They had been nesting with House Martins in a building belonging to the local fish market
Tarifa, Southern Spain


Whimbrel. We unfortunately dipped on our target birds for this stretch of beach, Lesser Crested and Elegant Terns
Tarifa, Southern Spain

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Sabine's Gull

Adult Sabine's Gull at Grafham Water, Cambs blown in land by the tail end of the American Hurricane

Grey Phalarope

Grey Phalarope, Grafham Water, Cambs. One of many blown off couse by the tail end of the American Hurricane

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl, Rutland Falconry Centre

Lanner Falcon

 Lanner Falcon, Rutland Falconry Centre

Saker Falcon

 Saker Falcon, Rutland Falconry Centre

Eagle Owl

 Eagle Owl, Rutland Falconry Centre

Bateleur Eagle

 Bateleur Eagle, Rutland Falconry Centre

Common Buzzard

 Common Buzzard, Rutland Falconry Centre

Harris Hawk

 Harris Hawk, Rutland Falconry Centre

Great Grey Owl

Great Grey Owl, Rutland Falconry Centre

Barred Owl

 Barred Owl, Rutland Falconry Centre

Barn Owl

Barn Owl. Rutland Falconry Centre