My decent(ish) finds in Feb 2012: 1 Yellow-browed Warbler Carnon Downs 04/02, 1 Water Pipit Carnon Downs 04/02, 1 Smew Loe Pool 01/02

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Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Bird ID quiz

We all love great photos. Here is some cracking ones of some recent arrivals on the Lizard. But lets face it, most birding, especially in Autumn, involves damp conditions, piss-poor views, bad light, and distant birds. Here's a a few  to remind you that it's easier to identify birds on the internet than it is in real life. These should all be gettable quite easily, but if you can do them from the ones on the left, I'll be impressed!



Even harder:

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Another Blue-head?

Answers on a postcard

Saturday, 18 September 2010


Went for a pleasant stroll across the Lizard today, leaving late due to drunken antics the night before. Caught up with this beast - better in real life than the photos suggest. Also flushed a Quail near Ruan Pool, which was nice for me, but probably not for it. Oddly enough, the first one I've actually seen in the UK even though I've heard many a wet-my-lip emerging from hayfields and flying overhead at night and seen a few abroad. I've always felt inclined to leave the poor things in peace safe in the knowledge that I would eventually flush one by accident as I did today. Aside from that - there seemed to be a few migrants around, with plenty of yellow wagtails still. I'm fairly sure there was a couple of 1st winter Blue-headed wagtails feeding in the cow fields above Church Cove. Seemed to have very dark masks for flavissima. That said, I'm not that hot on identification criteria of this form in 1st winter plumage and appreciate if anybody could give me any pointers.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Lots of scarce but no rare

Despite promises that Earl might deliver a Gloria-like array of Nearctic goodies and despite a pretty spectacular migration of the eastern seaboard of the states, the Lizard has been completely devoid of Dendroicas . It hasn’t been devoid of birds though.  I’ve probably seen more Wheaters, Yellow Wagtails and Whinchats in the last week than I have in the entire time up until now, with at least 100 of the first two and at least 30 of the latter.  However, despite thrashing the entire peninsula for pretty much five days solid, I haven’t really connected with anything.  The best I managed was a single flyover Lap Bunting. West Penwith has played host to flocks of Ortolan, Wryneck and Melodies with a supporting cast of Wilson’s Phalarope and Citrine Wag, Tony’s found c. 6 wrys and 3 orts and Steve managed a woodchat and a flock of black terns. I just haven’t been in the same place as the goodies though. On the plus side, I’ve found a couple of new migrant hotspots, but to be honest, birding has been pretty dispiriting of late. I blame my new camera, which as the shots above attest, I haven’t quite mastered. It should be pretty good for record shots, but it seems to have prevented me from finding any records to shoot! It should hopefully allow me to prettify this blog though.

Edit: any thoughts on the race of these yellow wags anyone?

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