Saturday 27 April 2013

Blue-headed Wagtail, Whitley Bay

Wagtail fest on Whitley Bay beach, right now! A superb Blue-headed Wagtail, a dozen or more White Wagtails, a Yellow Wagtail and even a Pied Wagtail completing the cast. Just park at St Marys and walk a couple of hundred metres south down the beach. The wagtails are feeding on the flies around the seaweed. Another reason not to clean seaweed off beaches.

Monday 22 April 2013

Lucky Dip

Having dipped on the Pectoral Sandpiper at Backworth, a potential garden tick had I ventured onto my roof, I choose to have a wander around the patch to see what I could find.....

Golden Plover in their finest summer suits
Reynard looking bright eyed and bushy tailed

Saturday 20 April 2013

The Small and Mitey

Red-tailed Bumblebee & cargo
Finally, a bumblebee in the garden, rewarding my wildflower bulb planting. A Red-tailed Bumblebee taking nectar from a Grape Hyacinth. Unfortunately it has a few unwelcome stowaways, mites; the little pink things on it's 'neck'.

A couple of other small visitors today included a Goldcrest, most likely just passing through on its way back to Scandinavia, and my first Willow Warbler of the year.

Willow Warbler

Friday 19 April 2013

Wor Jackie

Wor Jackie
Jackdaws are putting the finishing touches to their nest, in the box that was supposedly for Little Owls. Not sure where they are nesting, but we hear them calling every night at the moment. Wor Jackie watched me checking the moth trap - best catch so far this year, not difficult considering the long winter and recent gales. 10 Hebrew Characters, 2 Common Quakers and this handsome Early Grey.

Early Grey
Meanwhile, in the rest of the garden, a Wren is nesting in my compost heap, a Woodpigeon is nesting behind the Gazebo, Blue Tits and Tree Sparrows are in nest boxes, and Swallows are swooping into the barn. Oh, and the wind is still and the sun is shining!!!!

Common Quaker

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Bang! And the Winter's gone!

Spring has arrived with a bang, with gales rearranging garden furniture, trees, and I fear tiles! Still, it's far more spring like than it was this time last week.

Toads and frogs are finally spawning, Swallows are hawking insects across the fields, and my winter gas bill has arrived on the mat. Ouch!!

Winter may now be gone, but there are lingering winter visitors in the front paddock, or could they be staying as a new breeding species for Northumberland?


Friday 12 April 2013

Tsunami Warning!

After the eternal winter, the arrival of warm southerly winds this Saturday is likely to cause a massive tidal wave of arrivals. In fact there's a few trickles starting right now, with my first Chiffchaff on patch yesterday. This weekend could be quite a spectacle!