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spuggies and jackdaws and hedgehogs and frogs


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3 hours ago, Ullman said:

As it happens, saw a heron at Stone Creek today. Along with shed loads of curlews and a couple of kestrels.

Still drinking that cheap lager then?

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Sky Sports Jenna Brooks to Jake Connor regarding England selection : "Shaun Wane has said that he's spoken to you about why you were left out, he's also said he's told you what you needed to do more of, I'm interested, what do you need to do more of and did you do it tonight?"

Jake Connor : "I don't know, to be honest I haven't spoken to him."

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14 minutes ago, Leeds Wire said:

Why do you need to chase them off?

Just to prove he can keep up with them?

Sky Sports Jenna Brooks to Jake Connor regarding England selection : "Shaun Wane has said that he's spoken to you about why you were left out, he's also said he's told you what you needed to do more of, I'm interested, what do you need to do more of and did you do it tonight?"

Jake Connor : "I don't know, to be honest I haven't spoken to him."

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13 hours ago, Leeds Wire said:

Why do you need to chase them off?

Cos they're eating my garden. And they seem to do a pretty good job of working out what's a weed and what's vegetables, flowers etc. At least they don't seem to kill the trees like bigger deer do.

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On 11/27/2018 at 7:20 PM, Old Frightful said:

Still drinking that cheap lager then?

Only one kestrel yesterday, I'm trying to cut down.

Impressed with the roadrunneresque stopping ability of the stoat that nearly ran under my front wheel though.

Old Faithful we never lose at Wembley

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On 11/27/2018 at 7:21 PM, Old Frightful said:

Just to prove he can keep up with them?

They're more scared of the neighbours cat than they are of people. They don't even run until I'm within about 10 feet.

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On ‎11‎/‎26‎/‎2018 at 5:37 PM, Ullman said:

Saw a little egret at the Beverley end of Long Lane this morning. Don't see them that often but that seems to be one of their regular spots.

It's easy to get depressed about the statistics on various species of bird being in decline, either in this country or elsewhere or both.  However, in a UK context, the egret family are doing well and give us something to be cheerful about.

It's interesting, Ullman, that you are now seeing little egrets in the East Riding.  I saw my first, decades ago, in France and got very excited at the time.  Then they spread across the channel, initially I suspect to over-winter on river estuaries, and then they began to breed here.  I know see them in quite urban contexts (eg flying over and within Salisbury city centre), and at all times of year.

Next, there were occasional sightings of wintering great white egrets, and now they are sometimes reported in places like old mineral working based bird reserves in totals up to four or five (eg that sort of number at Blashford Lakes between Salisbury and Bournemouth, just the other day)

And now, on top of all that, we seem to be getting increasing numbers of cattle egrets too.  There are currently nine spending their time in a field near Romsey, in Hampshire.

So, if you haven't seen great white and cattle egrets up your way yet, Ullman, keep looking!  I am sure that they too, like their smaller, daintier relatives, will gradually spread north up the country!

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Saw a Little Egret up a tree in the village today. Never seen one before and thought it was a heron, but some knowledgeable people came along and checked it on the internet and from the photos, seems they were right.

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12 hours ago, JonM said:

Saw a Little Egret up a tree in the village today. Never seen one before and thought it was a heron, but some knowledgeable people came along and checked it on the internet and from the photos, seems they were right.

Isn't there a simple distinction between egrets, ibis and herons related to neck position when they fly. One lot fly with their necks out straight whereas the other lot keep the neck in an S shape when they fly.

Ibis flying

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Egret flying

Great-egret-flying-north-morro-bay-6-5-0

Heron - a bit half and half

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On 12/9/2018 at 6:56 AM, Farmduck said:

Isn't there a simple distinction between egrets, ibis and herons related to neck position when they fly. One lot fly with their necks out straight whereas the other lot keep the neck in an S shape when they fly.

Sounds like you know a lot more about it than I do. Herons are relatively common here (although I only see them once or twice per year at most.) Egrets used to be very rare in the UK, but their range has gradually expanded from France into Southern England over the last 20-30 years. Ibis are currently very rare visitors, but the expectation is that if we continue to get warmer, they'll start breeding here.

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Never seen so many fieldfares as I have in the last couple of weeks. Saw the biggest flock I've ever seen, literally hundreds of them, near Broomfleet a week ago and saw another huge flock yesterday just south of Swine on the Trans Pennine Trail. That's in addition to the groups of a couple of dozen I see nearly every day.

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Old Faithful we never lose at Wembley

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On 12/6/2018 at 11:46 AM, JonM said:

Two red kites and a barn owl while out on my run this morning. When I was kid, you had to go to Rhyader and be lucky to see a red kite. Pretty much seem them every day around our village now.

Just seen three red kites circling above a clump of trees near High Hunsley. A few years back such a sight would have had the local birdwatching community speeding to the site armed with fancy scopes and cameras but red kites are commonplace now.

Also encountered the world's most stupid cat. It watched me approach then ran across the road in front of me just as I got to it.

Old Faithful we never lose at Wembley

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15 hours ago, Leeds Wire said:

There was around 200 lapwings in a field adjacent to Golden Acre Park in north Leeds this afternoon.  I’ve never seen them there before, can anyone explain? Do they always move around en masse?

They form large flocks in winter in this part of the world. Particularly open pasture or wetlands such as Swinemoor in Beverley.

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Old Faithful we never lose at Wembley

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Got a pleasant surprise yesterday morning when three roe deer ran across Willerby Low Road a few yards in front of me. Looked as if they were late for their shift pretending to be reindeer at the nearby garden centre.

Old Faithful we never lose at Wembley

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20 hours ago, Leeds Wire said:

There was around 200 lapwings in a field adjacent to Golden Acre Park in north Leeds this afternoon.  I’ve never seen them there before, can anyone explain? Do they always move around en masse?

To add to Ullman's good response to your query, LW, there are lots of bird species that defend territory as single birds, then mated pairs, and do so from later winter through spring and summer, but then flock in large numbers from autumn through much of winter.  Many smaller species do this, but of course are not as spectacular a sight as something the size of a lapwing.

I am pleased to hear that you saw so many (and not a little jealous!), as there are concerns nationally about their declining numbers.  I saw about forty the other week in the Avon valley, while driving into Salisbury.

Some flocking birds, of course, having foregathered, then migrate for part of the year.  Ullman reports a big fieldfare flock.  These and the other winter-visiting (for us in the UK) thrush, the redwing, will have hopped across the North Sea from northern continental Europe.

 

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Thanks for your response  There are plenty of lapwings in this area around Leeds/Harrogate/Otley but I've never seen them gather in such big numbers, especially in winter.

They usually show off with their unique noise and fantastic aerial displays in springtime. What a wonderful sight that is.

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On ‎12‎/‎16‎/‎2018 at 11:32 PM, Leeds Wire said:

Thanks for your response  There are plenty of lapwings in this area around Leeds/Harrogate/Otley but I've never seen them gather in such big numbers, especially in winter.

They usually show off with their unique noise and fantastic aerial displays in springtime. What a wonderful sight that is.

I agree with you, LW.

Down here in the south, I really miss the late spring/early summer burbling trills of curlews - a truly magical sound, which I used to enjoy when living in, first, the Yorkshire Dales and, then, Teesdale.

That said, the New Forest has its merits - churring nightjars (or 'whirring nighthawks' as the Dorset novelist Thomas Hardy would have put it) in some numbers being an obvious one.

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I was feeding the birds in the park this morning when a photographer wandered by and asked if he get some shots. He had a lens as long as my arm!  If you zoom in on these photos you can see amazing detail in the make up of this nuthatch. What a smashing outcome to a chance meeting ?

 

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8C1CA397-4DE0-4A24-9389-880206E01E46.jpeg

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