Saturday, September 13, 2008

... and the SE wind doth blow

Headed for Saltwick Nab area this morning, keen to see what was on the new wader place, 3 Ruff, 4 Dunlin, 2 Ringed Plover, 1 Common Snipe, 1 Curlew were joined by non-waderish 45 or so Teal and 4 Wigeon. Also around 70 Lapwings and a single Golden Plover.

It was a morning that always seemed to have a pile of promise. A Swift was encouraging, and there were at least 4 more later. A peer into the bushes where last week's Iccy showed off produced 5 Blackcaps, 3 Garden Warblers, 2 Whitethroats, a Pied Fly, a Willow Warbler and at least one Chiffchaff. A Spotted Flycatcher and the same or another Pied Flycatcher were by the houses along with a Redstart and later a Wheatear. A brief flight view of what might have been a Barred Warbler is best forgotten and a very brief view of another warbler should also be consigned to the dustbin of history.

Up on the top fields were 5 more Wheatears and a huge pile of Meadow Pipits with a few Skylarks. Time spent scrutinising these produced no very stripy, high pitched calling pipit unfortunately. A massive gull flock hid but one intermedius Lesser Black-backed Gull and a Common Gull.

At this point the star of the morning arrived. Flying low towards me a large raptor with a pale head, aha methinks 'tis an Osprey, I went for the camera and not the bins and just clicked away as it flew closer and closer. It began to dawn on me that this did not look much like an Osprey even through the fuzz of the viewfinder. I went to bins and struggled, Buzzard? No it's flying all wrong. It had to be a Honey Buzzard on shape but I can't recall ever seeing such a pale one. I clicked away a bit more for evidence and noted a few features as it spiralled up and headed inland. Nice one.

What's that?

That's not an Osprey, doh

Nice view

.... and away inland

I checked the warbler places and the wader scrape again to no avail and decided to call it a morning, the greenhouse beckoned.

On the way a Common Buzzard gave excellent views, whilst another called nearby, a nice contrast to the earlier Honey.


East Ayton Birding said...

Nice shots Alastair - remarkable variation in the range of plumages of these birds.

Alastair said...

The difference between your very dark bird and this pale one shows the huge range. I'm glad I saw this one so well it would have been easy to make a mistake I think.

Boulmer Birder said...

Great pics and obviously great views Alastair, I so wish I'd seen one up here...