Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Cleveland - Out and about!

An early arrival and overnight stay with friends in Yarm meant a day out birding was possible - with veteran local birder Mike Gee. Getting ready to go out, a noisy Jay in the garden made a brief entry!

A visit to Bowesfield Marsh blanked the Green-winged Teal which has been putting in an appearance lately. Must be the stickiest? mud in existence here!! Eight Whooper Swans were on the water and time didn't permit the long walk for better 'light'!

A little bit of persuasion meant the next target birds were the Redpolls at Rainton Meadows. Mealies were a cert here and a long awaited tick!

Outnumbering the Lessers, the larger Mealy Redpolls had quite distinctive pale plumage and the images I know I'm going to post from the following day will do them better justice! Nevertheless, a Lesser and Mealy Redpoll on a feeder together are quite easily told apart....

Eventually, the larger and more aggressive Mealies took over and dominated feeding proceedings. There were about 20 present, numbers well down and no sign of the Arctic....

The final call was at Saltholme where the only real interest was likely to be roosting Long-eared Owls? We managed to find one and a couple of record shots through the twigs and various obstructions, at least meant the day finished with another decent bird....

An evening talk on 'Digital Photography' was to follow, I planned to return to Rainton Meadows the following day - to take advantage of early morning light and hopefully more obliging birds!

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