Monday, 16 April 2012

The good, the bad and the ugly

Yesterday I had a pretty miserable day on the birding front. I dipped Skevs Wheatear at Jubilee and then, eschewing the chance to go and see the Ring Ouzels at Timberwood Hill, I made the choice to go and find my own Ring Ouzel at Croft Hill instead. I did this because of previous urges to find my own birds and Croft Hill is a good shout for one at this time of year. Too bad I didn't drag myself up there until mid afternoon when the hordes of dog walkers had turned the place into a birdless wasteland.
So that brings me to today

The good (or should it be bad?): After not seeing any Ouzels yesterday I quickly settled for looking at other peoples today and so pootled off to Thornton res. where three birds had been reported a couple of hours previously. But they were nowhere to be found upon arrival. Bugger, I checked the whole Markfield arm too.... twice! The visit was rescued (cue the good bit) from being a total washout by a lovely close encounter with a pair of Goldcrest which just occasionally sat still long enough for a couple of images to be taken:

The bad (or should it be good?):
After this It would have been rude not to carry onto the Timberwood Hills area to actually try and see some Ring Ouzel this time as these birds had been present for a couple of days and happily they were quickly found once I parked up at the correct spot, thankfully bagging me a full-blown life tick! Yes, this really does highlight my status as a birding novice but somehow I'd just never seen one before! Last spring in the days before blogger I visited Beacon Hill twice and Burrough Hill a few times specifically on the hunt for them but never got lucky and saw one. Other current "bogey" birds you may wish to poke fun at me about also include any Skua, Corncrake, Lesser pecker, Montys Harrier, Wood Warbler and most species of Petrel!
Oops I've been waffling, back to the bad bit. The bad bit refers to the attempts at photographing Ring Ouzel using a smart phone at a considerable range. Undeterred, the Galaxy SII was cranked up to a beefy 4x zoom and bagged this delightful image:

I think I should at least get a bonus point for getting all three in the same a blackbird for comparison, like.

And the ugly:
No, no, no, this doesn't refer to the arrival of John Hague who briefly joined me watching the Ouzels, it refers to the attempt at photographing one of the three Wheatear that were also present in the same spot as the Ouzels. You might want to shield your eyes....

Aaaaargh my eyes, it burns, it burns!

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