Birding Highlights of 2013

Over this last year I have had 13 new lifers and some of the best are; Black Stork, Buff-breasted Sandpiper, Pectoral Sandpiper, Great White Egret, Night Heron and Ring-billed Gull.
Ring-Billed Gull at Melton Mowbray CP (My local Town!)

Pectoral Sandpiper (Circled) at Titchwell

Bearded Tit at Cley Marsh

Bitten at Rutland Water

Red-Breasted Merganser at Rutland Water
 Night Heron at Thornton Res
Best of all Black Stork at Rutland Water 


Odd Birds

Partial Albino Golden Plover
Since I have started Birding you get to realise birds can sometime have odd feathers here are a few pics of some odd birds.

Greenfinch x Goldfinch


Fineshade Woods Kites

On Saturday I went to another outing with LROS with my Dad to Northamptonshire's Fineshade Wood, to look for Crossbill, Siskin and the Red Kite Roost, hoping for a great day out.

Red Kite

We set off at 7:30am to go to Fineshade Wood, but 1st we headed off to Eyebrook Reservoir to look for a *Velvet Scoter* which sadly we didn't managed to see it but got some nice views of Goldeneye, Mute swan and Marsh Tit at the feeders.
Goldeneye at Eyebrook

We got to Fineshade with about 5 Red Kites flying over our heads, then when we all arrived within 10 Minutes we had a great variety of species including 2*Nuthatches*, *Marsh Tit* and *Coal Tit*. Then after 15 minutes of nothing there was 2 separate nasal screeches then two *Jays* flew right in front of us, adding our list up to 27.

Then carrying down the path we went into a bird hide which overlooks some feeders in a clearing of the Wood, and on our way down this woman and I were startled when a *Woodcock* flew from about a meter away from us, after recovering from the *Woodcock* the feeders were packed with birds mainly  of a Tit flock including *Great Tit, *Blue Tit*, *Coal Tit*, *Marsh Tit* and some *Chaffinches* then briefly a female *Great Spotted Woodpecker*.

After lunch it was pretty quite apart from another *Woodcock* and many more *Red Kites* and the last bird of the day ended with a nice *Mistle Thrush*.


Birding with the County Recorder and A focus on Nature

On Saturday I had the opportunity to go birdwatching with Leicestershire and Rutland's County recorder Steve Lister.

So we met at the Anglian Birdwatching Centre at Rutland Water and from the visitor center we got great views of *Wigeon*, *Pintail*, *Gadwall* and my first since February this year *Goosander* 10 of them 8 Males and 2 Females. Then Steve got a phone call that two *Bitterns* were showing well from Lagoon 3 at my favourite hide Shoveler.

When we got their we got given news that a plane had been flying low and disturbed one of the two *Bittens* and then after 10 minutes of waiting their it was about 400m away standing half way up the reeds this is a bird I have been waiting to see for about 6 years and now I have seen a *Bitten*. We watched it for about 3/4 hour then two people that I had met before at the Birdfair this year and at a talk near one of my local villages, Rob Lambert and Lucy McRobert and we got talking about one of their recent twitch to see the *Western Orphean Warbler* in Pembrokshire.

Bittern on Lagoon 3
Then we headed to look at Burley Fishponds and North Arm to look for some *Black-necked Grebes* which I had previously tried to locate but failed but this time I got them all three even though my dad had to pick me up so I could look through Rob Lambert's telescope. Then their was two Green Woodpeckers sat around some ant hills.

So the day paid of with to new lifers for me *Bittern* and *Black-necked Grebe*, also hope Rob Lambert and Lucy Mcrobert have good luck on Sunday for *Hawfinch* and *Two-barred Crossbill* at Lynford Arboretum.
Green Woodpecker one of two sighted