Yet Another Cycling Forum

Random Musings => Miscellany => Where The Wild Things Are => Topic started by: Wowbagger on 28 March, 2008, 11:48:10 pm

Title: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 March, 2008, 11:48:10 pm
Not by me, but the Southend RSPB website claims that a swallow was seen in Gunners Park, Shoeburyness, yesterday. It wants its head examined.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 March, 2008, 12:39:35 pm
Tadpoles! No doubt about it. Very small, still clinging to the spawn. It's the first time in about 4 years that the Priory Park frogspawn has made it this far.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 29 March, 2008, 12:53:06 pm

Thanks for starting this thread, Wow--I was hoping you would.

Nothing to report from here yet today except a tufted titmouse at the feeder; haven't been out of the house yet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 March, 2008, 12:43:22 pm
Heard a chiffchaff in Priory Park. Also saw the parakeet again from a distance. Other than that, the usual stuff.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 30 March, 2008, 04:17:56 pm
2 of the Moray Firth dolphins throwing their fish around.
Some tourist eagles buzzards, as usual.
A small ex-badger  :'(
A wooderypeckery
A teeny tiny lamb! I've never seen one that small before.  :-* It was all covered in fluff (perhaps it was lamugo?).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 31 March, 2008, 06:05:33 pm
Went to look for the kingfisher at the east end of Two Tree Island, but he wasn't there. There were mallards, coots, blackheaded gulls and a couple of kestrels.

At the other end, on the lagoon, there were loads of avocets. Someone told me that 75 had been counted. That's only 149 avocet legs though: I saw one which had only 50% of the normal number.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 31 March, 2008, 07:18:43 pm
a northern flicker (woodpecker) drumming on top of a lamp fixture in the parking lot
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Si on 02 April, 2008, 01:31:25 pm
Saw a squeasel (or possibly a big stoat, can never remember which is which) darting across the road today...don't often see them around here.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 02 April, 2008, 01:43:24 pm
Weasels are the tiny little ones. Stoats are quite big.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 02 April, 2008, 11:09:25 pm
Saw a squeasel (or possibly a big stoat, can never remember which is which)

One is weasily identified, the other is stoatally different.


Alright, alright, I'm getting me coat  :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 03 April, 2008, 02:56:02 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/duck.jpg)


This fellow and his mate in our garden at the weekend.
Title: froggy did awooing go
Post by: border-rider on 03 April, 2008, 02:57:00 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/frogs.jpg)#


Our little garden pond is seething with randy frogs
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mrcharly-YHT on 03 April, 2008, 04:22:59 pm
Three hinds, running across the field only 50 yards from me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: aglet on 03 April, 2008, 05:24:29 pm
A heron, landing on this roof
 (http://maps.google.co.uk/?ll=51.538264,-0.029709&spn=0.000313,0.000968&t=h&z=20) near Victoria Park.

Last year I saw a cormorant in this stretch of canal eating an eel, perhaps I should have built a temple.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 06 April, 2008, 03:56:33 pm

Bit late, but was away. On 02/04/08 in Tissington (Derbyshire) two swallows, which obviously had not read the weather forecast
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Si on 08 April, 2008, 11:22:35 am
A fox having a sneezing fit.  He was stood ont he next plot along from my allotment, doing foxy creeping things with his eyes on some pigeons.  Sudden;y starts sneezing, each sneeze moving him back a few inches.  Went on like this for aroud three minutes then, rather pensively looked around to see if anyone had seen him, saw myself and birds watching him and sulked off into the undergrowth with an even redder look to his cheeks!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 08 April, 2008, 11:58:21 am
Was driving back home late last night (about 2:30am) and saw two barn owls. Lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 09 April, 2008, 10:29:58 am
Cheating really, but I saw a flock of flamingos this morning, here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/streetmap.dll?G2M?X=431790&Y=306300&A=Y&Z=3).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 April, 2008, 09:42:20 pm
On Monday morning we saw a hen harrier (female) quite close to the top of the Bolderwood Ornamental Drive in the New Forest.

On Tuesday evening we watched a pair of badgers eating peanuts from a tray from a distance of about 20 feet,in the garden of the B & B we were staying at.

On Wednesday we saw a nuthatch in what is claimed to be Britain's largest London Plane at the Mottisfont Priory.

Yesterday, we were drinking in the Cuckoo in Hamptworth when a chiffchaff came into the bar, hovered around for a bit and then flew out again.

This morning I saw my first house martin of the year, not far from Fritham.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 13 April, 2008, 06:01:28 pm
The following small rabbit sat in the middle of the road. When I tried to shift it it ran slowly round in a circle. I managed to pick it up and put onto the verge so it wouldn't get run over. It seemed like it wasn't in very good shape though  :(

(http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f330/Pinniped/ACF/WTWTA/rabbit01.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 14 April, 2008, 06:52:48 pm
First swallow of the year, yesterday while on the Witham Wander.

Heard the first whitethroat of the year this morning on 2 tree island.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mike J on 14 April, 2008, 07:06:04 pm
The following small rabbit sat in the middle of the road. When I tried to shift it it ran slowly round in a circle. I managed to pick it up and put onto the verge so it wouldn't get run over. It seemed like it wasn't in very good shape though  :(


Its probably likely to have mixy :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 14 April, 2008, 08:59:01 pm
Can't see any sign of the myx - on a road,  more likely it had been hit and was dazed and confused.

Reminds me of this one.

(http://hazeii.net/images/2004/bunny1.jpg)

Woken up by a male pheasant and its mate making a hell of a racket - I looked out and there was a rook pecking at something on the ground, and the pheasants were trying to drive it off. My guess was the rook was after one of their young, but when I went to investigate it turned out the rook had been after the baby bunny - makes me think those pheasants had lost their young to rooks in the past!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 14 April, 2008, 09:06:13 pm
Seen on Sunday when we had all that snow: a fox running across our shed roof (which is an access point for local cats) in broad daylight.

Seen on Monday in the Barnes Wetlands Centre: a green woodpecker which swooped down right over our heads. My mum, who's an avid spotter, was very excited as that's a first for her. Obviously all the other birds and ducks don't count, taking into account where we were...

Seen today: mallard ducklings and baby coots on the pond on Wandsworth Common. Everyone say "aaaawwww".
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Notsototalnewbie on 15 April, 2008, 10:46:23 am
When I was in Richmond Park with my friend the other day, a great big crow started rifling in our open panniers (we'd stopped to have a snack). Cheeky sod!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 15 April, 2008, 10:49:33 am
I thought you said
a great big cow


Now that would be a good spot in Richmond park  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Notsototalnewbie on 15 April, 2008, 11:08:10 am
Hehe, now that would have been notable!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: simonali on 16 April, 2008, 03:48:13 pm
I'm gradually learning a few of our British birds by spotting them out walking the dog, trying to remember what they look like and then looking them up when I get back home. I saw a pair of goldfinches today, which was a nice spot for me as I knew what they were already and didn't have to ge the book out! ;D

I see a lot of tits about (steady!) and still can't distinguish between some of them yet. Saw a grey one a while back which turned out to be a coal tit, something I'd not seen before.

We seem to have a proliferation of robins at the moment and I usually see 2 or 3 every walk. My house has steps up to the front door with handrails and as I got my bike out to ride to work the other morning there were 2 sitting on either side staring one another out. Oh to have had a decent camera in my hand at that moment!

Get a lot of house martins round here in the summer, which the dog likes to chase, as they fly low to the ground. Got a feeling there might not be so many this year, though, as I think they used to live in an old farm building nearby, which they've now torn down. :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 16 April, 2008, 03:56:29 pm
Partial bird list from Sunday's ride in Ladysmith, Virginia (see Gallery for pics)--mostly birding by ear, since if I stopped to look, I got left behind!

Northern Parula
Pine Warbler
a swallow of some sort
Eastern Towhee
Chipping Sparrow
two ducks of some sort
White-eyed Vireo
Carolina Wren
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: simonali on 17 April, 2008, 06:19:10 pm
I saw a blackbird today that had 2 big white patches on his back
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 17 April, 2008, 06:31:42 pm
I saw a blackbird today that had 2 big white patches on his back

It should learn not to sit under other blackbirds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 17 April, 2008, 07:39:56 pm
On my commute I pass a rare breeds farm.  A couple of weeks ago there appeared 10 or so piglets.  Now there's a sight to gladden the heart.  I'm not too sure of pig breeds.  I assumed the parents were saddlebacks - dark body with light band round the belly.  But the little ones are as piggy pink as pink piggies can get.

In the next field are 4 or 5 llamas (or maybe alpacas?).  Yesterday morning they were huddled together in the corner with a dusting of frost on their fur.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: simonali on 18 April, 2008, 12:13:36 am
Ooh, that reminds me, I saw some alpacas the other day on my Wylye valley ride. I know these were alpacas coz it said so on the gate!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rollo on 18 April, 2008, 11:31:35 am
Ms Rollo saw what she described as
Quote
an eagle!  An actual real one! It was huge!'
at Whiteshill on the way to Gloucester this morning.
She spoke to a friend who works at Slimbridge and they excitedly despatched a team of RSPB types to go and look.  Apparently, it's a White Tailed Eagle (http://www.rspb.org.uk/ourwork/conservation/species/casestudies/whitetailedeagle.asp) which has been blown over here recently from Norway on the north-easterly winds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rollo on 18 April, 2008, 01:10:15 pm
Update:  Turns out it wasn't the recently-spotted-at-Slimbridge White Tailed Eagle after all.

It was an American Bald Eagle :o

An escapee from somewhere that's known to be around the area.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 18 April, 2008, 07:43:20 pm
Apparently it escaped from the Cotswold Falconry Centre at Batsford last Thursday
Title: Re: froggy did awooing go
Post by: Treewheeler on 18 April, 2008, 08:55:08 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/frogs.jpg)#


Our little garden pond is seething with randy frogs
Oh, froggy went a courting he did ride ahum...
Oh, froggy went a courting he did ride ahum...
Oh, froggy went a courting he did ride, a sword and pistol by his side ahum...ahum..ahum

 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 18 April, 2008, 08:57:27 pm
I'm sure the moral of that rhyme is "never leave home or do anything", since they all get eaten.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nutkin on 18 April, 2008, 09:07:37 pm
Wooing? That's more like an orgy!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 18 April, 2008, 09:23:18 pm
Result: 3 dead*, and a lot of frogspawn**.  The rest have vanished now

*the day after this photo there were so many that they were spilling out onto the grass and scrapping around the garden

**sadly, I suspect that the buyers of our house will fill in the pond.  They do have two very small children.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Treewheeler on 18 April, 2008, 09:29:31 pm
**sadly, I suspect that the buyers of our house will fill in the pond.  They do have two very small children.
That should shut the little shits up.
 Being turned into landfill...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobajobrob on 22 April, 2008, 02:31:21 pm
A couple of pairs of very hairy bullocks on Cleeve Hill common.

(http://www.robshields.org/~rshields/2008/04/bullocks.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 23 April, 2008, 10:28:22 pm
A couple of pairs of very hairy bullocks on Cleeve Hill common.

Yikes, I never saw any cattle on Cleeve Hill, no end of sheep, but cattle's a novelty!  Those certainly look like big beasts.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 April, 2008, 12:14:46 pm
Amongst the normal vermin at Priory Park, there is a rat which is almost white in colour. I saw it again this morning. It may well be albino, but I haven't been close enough to see the colour if its eyes. We also saw a one-eyed rat.

In addition we saw the usual stuff and the first blackcap of the year. I have heard others singing but this was the first one I tracked down and have actually seen.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 26 April, 2008, 12:36:53 am
Mojo was shouting at this:

(http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f330/Pinniped/ACF/WTWTA/gull01.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Noodley on 26 April, 2008, 12:41:58 am
A couple of pairs of very hairy bullocks on Cleeve Hill common.

(http://www.robshields.org/~rshields/2008/04/bullocks.jpg)

They look like Highland cattle....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 26 April, 2008, 08:58:42 pm
Quite large bird of prey very v shaped tail.Red kite?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 27 April, 2008, 06:26:07 pm
Sparrowhawk chasing chaffinches.

Osprey. I got some pics but even with the mirror lens they were a long way away.
Chap in the hide had a 600/f4 with 1.4x on teh back, on a very solid tripod (on a wooden floor - he cursed every time someone walked across the floor.) He got some reasonable pics.

<Father Ted>
This one is small but very close.
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2300/2446794286_e7f9a683c3.jpg?v=0)

This one is big but a very long way away (about 200m).

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2377/2446794538_af99eea8ee.jpg?v=0)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 27 April, 2008, 07:51:56 pm

Either I was riding with my eyes shut on Friday or all the bluebells have flowered in the last 48  hours.  And I heard my first cuckoo this year.  It must be Spring
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 April, 2008, 09:25:26 pm
Mrs. Wow and I went to Two Tree Island today to improve our chances of hearing a cuckoo. We didn't hear one, but we saw one flying fast and low to the ground.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 27 April, 2008, 10:03:45 pm
First swallows this year
Several buzzards
Kestrel
Yellowhammers (one seen, loads heard)
Heard a woodpecker pecking wood
Jay
Wheatear
Another dead badger (when are we going to see a live one?)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 28 April, 2008, 12:02:58 am
On today's CTC trundle: -
First cuckoo, amazingly just after someone had just said she hadn't heard one this year
Wild garlic in flower, in sufficient profusion to fill the air with its scent
House martins (I'd seen a pair of swallows working a riverside meadow on Thursday, and lots more over this weekend)
Lots of cowslips
Bluebells, changing gradually from the vague blue mist of a few days ago into a patchy carpet
and a blackbird that started its alarm calls with something that sounded far too much like a mechanical problem with someone's bike, until it finally remembered how to do it properly :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 29 April, 2008, 08:55:56 pm
Not sure whether this should be here or Food & Drink  ;): yesterday on the grass verges, St Georges Mushrooms* in profusion, and I picked about 2 lb: part for supper and part made into a paté.  These are somewhat hit-or-miss in our area, you get good years when they show up (usually a few days after St George's Day) in abundance, other years hardly any.  This appears to be a good year.  Alas the maggots usually beat one to it, but I got enough worm-free ones to be going along with.  They have a lovely mealy scent and are best fried in butter until tender.  Yes I knew this would turn to Food & Drink stuff...

*Calocybe gambosa

First cuckoo, amazingly just after someone had just said she hadn't heard one this year
Just occurred to me, heard the first cuckoo in England on a ride back on 13th April, one of the earliest I can remember (and that's after we heard and saw one when in France back in March).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Torslanda on 30 April, 2008, 10:56:09 pm
Not strictly today but while at CenterParcs last week.

(http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d55/shedbike/various087.jpg)

and a different family.

(http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d55/shedbike/various074.jpg)

ickle boy (21 mths) was ver happy  ;D

John
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 01 May, 2008, 10:46:10 pm
This morning - quite marvellously - a barn owl flapped languidly alongside me for about a quarter of a mile while I was on my way into work this morning. 

It's years since last I saw one, and the first time ever I've seen one in daylight.  I hope to see it again tomorrow, and plan to have my camera ready.   :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 02 May, 2008, 10:55:52 am
The other day I spotted a pair of goldfinches in my local park. I was very excited as I've never seen one that clearly before - bright yellow under their wings and a red beret. Lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 02 May, 2008, 02:50:15 pm
We're lucky enough to have them in the garden here :)

Very fine little fellows.  We have a Niger seed feeder that they rather like, and in the winter they eat bugs off the old teasel heads.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 02 May, 2008, 11:49:37 pm
A small flock of goldfinches here  by Deptford Creek (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=537648&y=177286&z=1&sv=537648,177286&st=4&ar=Y&mapp=newmap.srf&searchp=newsearch.srf)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobajobrob on 04 May, 2008, 02:16:47 pm
My neighbour's cat, in my kitchen last night. It came in through the catflap. It reminds me of an ewok. It also came into my bedroom in the middle of the night and started scratching.

(http://www.robshields.org/~rshields/2008/05/ewok.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 04 May, 2008, 02:20:27 pm
Cute :)

When I was a student I lived one hot summer in an attic room of a big terraced house

I used to keep the skylight open at night, and a big fat tabby used (literally) drop in to see me on a regular basis. He couldn't get back out, of course, and had to be taken downstairs and ejected
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 04 May, 2008, 05:46:37 pm
Went to Montrose Basin this afternoon. Saw Goldfinches, greenfinches, chaffinches, bluetits, sand martins, swallows, a swift, and a greater spotted woodpecker. Also a Heron, some eider ducks and a redshank.

The highlight (before I got the camera out) was an eider duck being attacked by a seal. It was damaged early on so couldn't take off but made it safely to shore.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 05 May, 2008, 08:26:37 am
Was at Strawberry Hill House (http://www.friendsofstrawberryhill.org) (what a very surprising place) yesterday for a exhibition, saw lots of groups of bright green parakeets all over the place!  Loud little devils, aren't they?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 05 May, 2008, 11:58:51 am
Saw an adder crossing the road somewhere on the Isle of Wight yesterday. Hopefully, Hummers Jr. who was following didn't squish it (he was reading a map at the time)  ::-)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fab Foodie on 05 May, 2008, 01:20:48 pm
Not much of a bird-watcher... but I'm getting into it for sure...
Yesterday driving-off for the day saw what I believe to be a Sparrow Hawk walking on the pavement at the end of our suburban cul-de-sac, it charged into a bush and then out again ending-up sat proudly on the end of a garage.   Not at all phased by our sitting and looking from the car.  Earlier apparently it had been in the neighbour's garden pulling away at some unfortunate dead bird.  About 500 yards up the road we turned at a roundabout to see a Kestrel (I think) dive into the grassy verge a few feet in front of us and emerge with it's prey and scarper across the road into the field beyond.  Finally going across the Chilterns the usual magnificent display of Red-kites.  Quite a day for raptor spotting!
Me and the lad were off to see birds of a different kind... Warbirds at RAF Hendon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 05 May, 2008, 07:11:50 pm
On Saturday I saw a pair of Peregrine Falcons near the top of Scarfell Pike. They were probably nesting among the cliffs up there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 05 May, 2008, 09:17:14 pm
Nuthatch - not sure how rare these are, but my impression is less rare than they used to be.

3 red kites.  I'd be surprised not to see any these days on the sort of route I took today.  Which is not to say that they don't look magnificent, circling slowly round, the Black Mountain a backdrop behind them.  They just look right there.

A lizardy thing.  Greeny and about 3 inches long, scuttled across the road just in front of me.  Maybe a newt?

Two curlews in a field by Llanddeusant.  I've only ever seen them on the coast before so it was a bit odd to see them poking their long beaks into the ground, miles form the sea.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 05 May, 2008, 09:59:09 pm
Last night there was a large pregnant toad cowering under the door step as we returned in darkness. I hope it found its way downhill and over the main road to the river.

Today, walking on Gittisham Common, we startled several deer. A small herd of highland cattle heard our approach and ran off. They seemed much wilder or more timid than most farm cattle. E had a brief glimpse of a small lizard.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 05 May, 2008, 10:17:07 pm
Seen today--groundhog nibbling at our black-raspberry canes.  >:(  And after all we've done to provide habitat.  :'(

Heard today--migrating Northern Parulas (Parulae?) singing in our neighborhood.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 05 May, 2008, 11:02:45 pm
Pics from Sunday. Two firsts for me.

A goldfinch and a greater spotted woodpecker. It was miserable weather so the pics are somewhat poor quality. Too slow on the shutter speed.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2227/2468412561_68578e925f.jpg?v=0)
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2326/2469234550_54410ecd74.jpg?v=0)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 06 May, 2008, 12:50:00 pm
Nice pictures, David.  #1 is a Goldfinch, not a Goldcrest, but nicely 'bagged' all the same.  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 06 May, 2008, 04:25:45 pm
Seen this morning--a white-crowned sparrow at our feeder, for the first time since we've lived in our house (12 years?). I've been hoping one would show up since we moved in--I know they winter in some farm fields out in the County, but have never seen one in town before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 06 May, 2008, 10:06:58 pm
Seen today: a tern hovering above the pond in my local park. I've never noticed one there before, though I haven't been looking. I noticed it today because it was flying around the pond, hovering every few feet. Very impressive and graceful, and much nicer than the greedy herring gulls we normally see.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Dinamo on 07 May, 2008, 01:20:18 pm
Seen on my morning commute at Abbeywood in Bristol.

(http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/ee253/ianrsparrow/DSC00231.jpg)

Swan in foreground was very protective - luckily out of view there is a fence !

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 07 May, 2008, 03:13:09 pm
Not seen, but heard my first 2 cuckoos this morning. A ladybird hitched a ride on my shoulder for a couple of miles.

And a couple of speckled hens were seen fleetingly in the newly reopened 4 Horseshoes in Graveney.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PeteB99 on 07 May, 2008, 04:45:20 pm
Seen on the weekends sailing trip

Couple of Sea Eagles being mobbed by the local gulls

Porpoises

Seals
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 08 May, 2008, 12:30:18 pm
On the way home last night:

1 seal, 1 dolphin.

A pair of swallows managed to get trapped in the large storage area at work yesterday but they seem to have escaped today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobajobrob on 08 May, 2008, 03:07:22 pm
Today, an adder. I knew they existed round here but I'd never seen one until now.

It was badly injured, writhing about in the road but not going anywhere. Guts hanging out in two places. It had obviously been run over and was dying. A passing motorist stopped and decided to run it over a few times. Then I ran over its head a few times with my front wheel to make sure it was not suffering anymore.  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 08 May, 2008, 03:11:31 pm
The house martins are back. One nest is right next to a window and it's easy to watch them coming and going. Initially there appeared to be a dispute over ownership of the nest, but now they're busy home-making.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 08 May, 2008, 07:28:44 pm
1 rabbit, 1 coot, 1 swan, no ducks or ducklings. Also, a bike in the burn at Bingham.

I am alliterative today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobajobrob on 10 May, 2008, 08:57:00 am
Here's a picture of the adder I found on Cleeve Hill, Gloucs. You can see the distinctive markings on the head and back.

This is a flat snake roadkill picture. It's a bit gory but has mostly dried up now.
(click to show/hide)

Edit: splendid pics of a very much alive adder on Cleeve Hill here (http://www.wildaboutbritain.co.uk/forums/reptile-and-amphibian-forums/9418-adder-cleeve-common.html).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 May, 2008, 10:53:51 am
I love snakes. I haven't seen a live one for quite a while now, but in our youth my brother and I used to catch them. Adders are actually easier to catch than grass snakes - as long as you are wearing a leather glove! Grass snakes exude a foul-smelling fluid, not unlike dog-crap in its olfactory effect, which takes a while to wear off if you get it on you.

We used to have a nylon stocking rolled up our right arms and once you grasp the snake behind the head, it can't get to you. Then you unroll the stocking and the snake is trapped inside. Tie a knot in the top and you can carry it about easily.

Once, an adder found its way out of a stocking I was carrying and slithered harmlessly over my wrist before my brother recaptured it. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 11 May, 2008, 03:54:48 pm
Hare today - gone .... in the blink of an eye.  Never mind, at least they are still around, notwithstanding  the ubiquitous and wwetched bunny-wabbits.  A great big one, big as a large cat, loping easily through the woods....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 May, 2008, 05:03:57 pm
A weasel scampered across the road a couple of miles from home. We got a good enough view of it to make me think it was pregnant. Either that or it had eaten too much rabbit.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 11 May, 2008, 06:47:18 pm
An Osprey feasting on its catch. As the osprey was perching in the middle of Montrose basin (http://users.ecosse.net/montrosebasin/htdocs/visit.htm) it made for a difficult photographic challenge - one which my kit was not up to. However, I gor an indistict image that one could persuade oneself is an Osprey.

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2120/2483860488_4b52d3dcce_o.jpg)

Lots of other bits and pieces - godwits, oystercatchers, swallows, sand martins, garden birds of all sorts.

Must find a way to get a decent long lens.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 11 May, 2008, 10:42:25 pm
Several buzzards
Partridge
Red squirrel
Brown hare
Red Grouse
Deer scampering across a field

Mountain hare roadkill  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 12 May, 2008, 10:03:51 am
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/bunny.jpg)

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/foxy1.jpg)

Both in the garden this morning, but not at quite the same time :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 12 May, 2008, 11:18:47 am
I've been seeing foxes virtually every day of the week, although at night, so they wouldn't make as good a shot as that.

Mostly I've seen them on Tooting Bec common, but it looks like there is at least one living in this (http://maps.google.co.uk/?ie=UTF8&ll=51.375443,-0.106492&spn=0.000795,0.002704&t=h&z=19) flower bed, right next to the Tram tracks.  I suprised it, and it jumped back in with much rustling.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 12 May, 2008, 12:19:18 pm
A couple of fully-scaled common carp in a fairly shallow, reedy bit of slow-moving stream. They probably weighed between 2 & 3 lb.

It appears as though someone has got fed up with their goldfish, because there are a couple of them swimming around in the same stretch. I've seen one or other every day for the past three or four days, whereas I'd never seen any goldfish in that bit before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 13 May, 2008, 01:59:38 pm
I saw a herd of deer must have been at least 20........  I must remember to take a camera on my rides :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 13 May, 2008, 02:02:27 pm
A cuckoo.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 13 May, 2008, 03:03:27 pm
However, I got an indistinct image that one could persuade oneself is an Osprey.

I could be equally well persuaded that that's the Loch Ness Monster ;D

Small and fast-moving bird of prey went past our building while I was having a fag break the other day.  Not being a twitcher, I have no idea what it was, but suspect it has been feasting on the unsuspecting flying rats which live on the roof.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 13 May, 2008, 03:15:37 pm
Small and fast-moving bird of prey went past our building while I was having a fag break the other day.  Not being a twitcher, I have no idea what it was, but suspect it has been feasting on the unsuspecting flying rats which live on the roof.

Possibly a sparrowhawk if it's been scoffing pigeons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 13 May, 2008, 03:26:54 pm
However, I got an indistinct image that one could persuade oneself is an Osprey.

I could be equally well persuaded that that's the Loch Ness Monster ;D


If it is it is very lost.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 14 May, 2008, 08:15:29 am
Yesterday I saw a swan on the canal bank, lots of ducks who were very quacky and at least a dozen ducklings. I hope the ducklings all survive. Last year they started off at over a dozen and finished with about three.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 14 May, 2008, 08:20:20 am
Yesterday I saw a swan on the canal bank, lots of ducks who were very quacky and at least a dozen ducklings. I hope the ducklings all survive. Last year they started off at over a dozen and finished with about three.

It's normal for most of the ducklings to get eaten by something or other, else we would be overrun by ducks!

I think that a fair percentage of broods are dwindled down to nothing in a couple of weeks. By contrast, I think it was last year in our local park that a mother duck succeeded in raising to adult size ten ducklings in one brood. I've never seen that before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 14 May, 2008, 11:02:18 am
First sighting of swifts this year, last night.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 14 May, 2008, 11:26:40 am
I chased a squirrel (grey I'm afraid) along the Tooting Bec Common cycle path for twenty feet or so.  I think I suprised it, and then it didn't know what to do, as I appeared to pursue it along the path!  Eventually it spotted a nearby tree and leapt onto it, to make good it's escape.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 14 May, 2008, 03:03:29 pm
Identified today, though actually seen a few weeks back.

On a night ride, lots of screaming noises and rustling from the bank at the side of the track. Shone my lights in and saw a badget humping away - not uncommon. But something with two sharp teeth, flat nose, small eyes and big head started at me for a moment, then bolted.

Couldn't work out what it was - I thought Otter, but here in West Sussex? Nah...

Ferret? Too small. Finally decided it must have been a cat, and a trick of the light.

But just got told on a bike ride that yes, otters have been seen in the area - so seems it really was an otter!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 15 May, 2008, 10:08:57 am
seen in my sisters garden :o
(http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y31/YakDiver/snake.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 15 May, 2008, 10:27:03 am
Snake! Snake! It's a snake!
</Badgerbadgerbadger>
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 15 May, 2008, 11:41:56 am
seen in my sisters garden :o
(http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y31/YakDiver/snake.jpg)

Lovely! Grass snakes are terrific creatures. :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 15 May, 2008, 01:38:44 pm
Quote
Lovely! Grass snakes are terrific creatures
I'm shit scared of them even seeing them on the telly gives me the willys
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 15 May, 2008, 04:27:10 pm
C'mon, grass snakes are completely harmless - and way more scared of us than we are of them.

Big ones can be a bit of a shock to come across though!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 15 May, 2008, 05:48:00 pm
It was running across Chobham Common in a scout wide game at dusk that I became wairy of snakes.

I saw one uncoil and dissapear into the gorse from where my right foot was going to be in about two strides.






Only problem being there ae Adders on Chobham Common as well as the non-venomous snakes.

Matthew
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 15 May, 2008, 06:39:41 pm
Today I saw one of the most rare of creatures - it was a black pudding on a bike.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: blackpuddinonnabike on 15 May, 2008, 09:59:59 pm
Today I saw one of the most rare of creatures - it was a black pudding on a bike.  ;D

That's a coincidence!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 16 May, 2008, 12:17:17 am
A mouse.

Where?

In the trap in the cupboard. The trap has been there for months and finally a mouse decided to stick it's nose in.

So I released it.

At Tescos

In the carpark.

When I went shopping.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bluebottle on 16 May, 2008, 12:22:02 am
If that was at Riverside, the rats will have it in no time.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 16 May, 2008, 09:31:10 am
The brief copulation of a pair of blackbirds as I passed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 16 May, 2008, 09:52:01 am
If that was at Riverside, the rats will have it in no time.

Kingsway..

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 16 May, 2008, 12:56:41 pm
Today I shouted at a squirrel and rang my bell at a rabbit. They're as bad as pedestrians.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: valkyrie on 16 May, 2008, 01:10:39 pm
Found a frog in a mousetrap in my garage. No idea how it got it, it looked way too big to get under the door. Been dead for some time,  might have been there since last summer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 16 May, 2008, 09:31:20 pm
First back-garden ducklings of the year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 16 May, 2008, 09:38:00 pm
Newts & toads in our pond :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 17 May, 2008, 12:07:22 pm
Of all the fine birdsong we heard during the dawn chorus on the way to Brighton, the nightingale was a rare treat indeed. Ditchling Common at about 6.30 a.m.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 17 May, 2008, 02:59:25 pm
Of all the fine birdsong we heard during the dawn chorus on the way to Brighton, the nightingale was a rare treat indeed. Ditchling Common at about 6.30 a.m.

Quite a few nightingales in the area - seems to be something to do with this patch just north of the Downs that attracts them.

Worth riding at night just to listen to them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 19 May, 2008, 09:44:33 am
Three buzzards, two of which were having a barney in a field.
A kestrel.

And an osprey getting hassled by a crow at a fish farm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 19 May, 2008, 06:10:46 pm
I was on my afternoon commute and I heard a cuckoo. I looked up to see two of them flying about! Unfortunately I didn't have time to stop and watch. About 3 minutes and half-a-mile later I hard another cuckoo which may have been one of the two I saw, but it would have had to have got on with it.

I wonder whether the two I saw were male & female. The female is supposed not to cuckoo and the male is supposed not to cuckoo whilst flying, but this one definitely did. (unless there was a third which I didn't see!).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 19 May, 2008, 11:25:29 pm
Of all the fine birdsong we heard during the dawn chorus on the way to Brighton, the nightingale was a rare treat indeed. Ditchling Common at about 6.30 a.m.
We live less than a mile from Ditchling Common, and are familiar with the occurrence of nightingales there, though we don't hear them as often as we'd like.  Well listened!  Very different down in 'our' part of France, where every bush has its rossignol, it seems!

I was on my afternoon commute and I heard a cuckoo. I looked up to see two of them flying about! Unfortunately I didn't have time to stop and watch. About 3 minutes and half-a-mile later I hard another cuckoo which may have been one of the two I saw, but it would have had to have got on with it.

I wonder whether the two I saw were male & female. The female is supposed not to cuckoo and the male is supposed not to cuckoo whilst flying, but this one definitely did. (unless there was a third which I didn't see!).
We also heard and saw a pair of cuckoos up in Scotland this weekend, whilst walking through a rather forlorn and wind-damaged area of forest in the Trossachs.  And we definitely watched a smaller (unidentified) bird mobbing one of the cuckoos and successfully driving it off.  I thought this only happened with birds of prey, but seemingly not.  Do cuckoos' 'victims' know of the threat they pose, and take action accordingly?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 20 May, 2008, 03:51:29 pm
Two pheasants shagging, two little egrets, an extremely unkempt kestrel, and saw and heard reed warblers.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 20 May, 2008, 04:15:14 pm
We are too far north for nightingales unfortunately. They dont like coming much further north than Watford Gap.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 21 May, 2008, 07:22:41 pm
A young male fox, on the cycle track. Tail bushed out it was spooked my two cyclists approaching in different directions. Ran around in a circle, low to the ground. Then it took off at speed in to the field and up the hill.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 25 May, 2008, 08:03:09 pm
Nightingales here today for us too.  Not on Ditchling Common this time, but we were out walking a mile or two to the west, in an area of open space on the edge of town known - appropriately enough - as Nightingale Meadows.  First time I've heard them sing at that spot - comforting to know that they can read... ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 27 May, 2008, 01:11:26 pm
Seen on Friday: rabbits.

This is not unusual in areas well-found for greenery, but hopping blithely across the car parks of a retail park in Scunthorpe ??
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 27 May, 2008, 04:38:12 pm
Rabbits get just about everywhere and I would certainly expect to see them right across our urban landscape.  All they need is a grassy verge or bank, or someone's back garden.  It was so different when I was a kid, in the 1950s just after the great myxo pandemic, and sighting a rabbit was a rarity and noteworthy....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 27 May, 2008, 06:14:48 pm
A scruffy GS woodpecker trying to burgle the blue tit's nest box :o

The nest box is just outside my office window so i can see all the comings and goings.  The woodpecker was knocking hell out of it.

I found this

Quote
In parts of the country, great spotted woodpeckers regularly attack wooden nest-boxes. The eggs and more commonly the young of blue tits, great tits, coal tits and nuthatches have all become victims. The woodpeckers gain access to the nest either by enlarging the box entrance or by drilling through the side of the box on a level with the contents

Great Spotted Woodpecker, Dendrocopos major (http://www.birdsofbritain.co.uk/bird-guide/g-s-woodpecker.asp)

This fella is noticeably more bedraggled that the bright and shiny ones who have been eating the peanuts on our feeders
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hazeii on 27 May, 2008, 11:25:46 pm
Nightingales here today for us too.  Not on Ditchling Common this time, but we were out walking a mile or two to the west, in an area of open space on the edge of town known - appropriately enough - as Nightingale Meadows.  First time I've heard them sing at that spot - comforting to know that they can read... ;)

Idly looking at the OS 1:25k for the local area today, I was surprised how many places are called "Nightingales" or "Nightingale [something]".  Naturally Wikipedia has a page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nightingale) that describes their preferred habitat (and here seems to be it).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 28 May, 2008, 01:16:48 pm
Camping in Watlington at the weekend:
Lots of small rabbits keeping the grass down; lots of Red Kites swooping over the site :D; a couple of sky larks over a field on a lovely walk; some swifts and wagtails too. 8)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: annie on 28 May, 2008, 01:27:17 pm
On my walk along the river path to Stowmarket, hundreds of damsel flies and dragon flies.  It was a sight I shall not forget in a hurry, I felt as though I had stepped into the scene of a wonderful fairy tale.  I also some some Highland cattle and lots of bunnies.  There was a moment of tense, nervous anxiety as I walked through a field full of cows, they are naturally inquisitive and they were intrigued by myself and the three dogs.  I wasn't too happy to have at least 30 of them behind me, 10 to the side and another 5 or 6 at the front.  It meant I ended up covered in cow pooh, the farmer watched from his door, his arms folded and a scowl upon his face.  This is the farmer who last year put a bull in the field and has since been told by the council he is not allowed to do this as the public footpath runs through his field.  He blocked in the styles and has made life very uncomfortable for us walkers.

2.5 hours on my feet, the dogs are exhausted and are sleeping soundly.

Saw a heron fishing on the river and the sound of hundreds of starling overhead.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 29 May, 2008, 12:35:29 pm
Seen on Mull and West Highlands last weekend:

Golden Eagles (first sighting for me  :thumbsup: )
White Tailed Eagles
Buzzards
Bullfinches
Siskins
Seals
Red Deer
Mountain Hares (with some white patches still in their fur)

Two of the eagle sightings were from the main road at Craignure  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 29 May, 2008, 01:53:05 pm
Walking back through Ealing late on Sunday night an old brindled fox trotted past on the pavement, breaking into a lope when it saw us. A moment later a young fox stood its ground ahead of us, staring as we approached, then sauntered across the street.

They have a marvellous ability to vanish into the shadows. Crossing the road to see where the young one had gone, there was no sign, and not even any side alleys it could have turned into.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 29 May, 2008, 03:02:04 pm
Yer foxes is good at jumping too.  I had a close encounter with one in New Cross Gate a few years ago.  It gave me the eye and launched a Prodigious Leap from the pavement onto a garage roof.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 29 May, 2008, 03:30:40 pm
Yer foxes is good at jumping too.

Indeed. My sister's garden is surrounded by high fences and garages, but foxes get in. One was only prevented from carrying off the guinea pig by the screams of a panicking niece.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 30 May, 2008, 12:22:42 pm
Mummy duck and 5 little quacklings walking across the road in front of me.  The road is closed to vehicular traffic and will be closed for a couple of months more, so no danger of them getting squashed.  Too cute.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 30 May, 2008, 04:36:55 pm
Traffic jam on a country(ish) road not usually prone to traffic problems. Traffic queueing in both directions.
Rode to the front of the queue to find a female Mallard shepherding 8 balls of brown fluff along the white line in the middle of the road. ::-)

Dismounted and ushered mother and babies up onto the verge and cycled home with a big grin!   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 30 May, 2008, 06:09:34 pm
I remember - years ago - an AA man doing just that! He stopped all the traffic on the busy A6038 near Baildon Yorks. (Hollins Hill (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=417580&y=440450&z=1&sv=417580,440450&st=4&ar=Y&mapp=newmap.srf&searchp=newsearch.srf&ax=417580&ay=440450)) to let Mummy duck and her brood waddle across!  All the held-up motorists (and I - held up on bike) watched the scene in good humour: not one impatient hoot.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: keepontriking on 30 May, 2008, 07:19:03 pm
I was out cycle-training with a group of five youngsters in a residential area when a fox came out of a house garden on the opposite side of the road. It calmly trotted along the pavement while watching us, then halted about 15m away, looked right and left and right again and crossed the road.

We were all very impressed with its road sense :)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 31 May, 2008, 12:07:57 pm


Marsh harrier, effortlessly gliding across the fens.

And at welney some moorhen chicks, little black fluffy balls with red beaks and a bald petch on their heads.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 31 May, 2008, 07:53:25 pm
I think I saw a wildcat in Glen Rinnes. It was big enough, the right colour and had the club-shaped ringed tail. It watched me approaching then disappeared into the gorse  :thumbsup:

Also a saw a red squirrel on the verge of a road.

Plus the usual buzzards, kestrels, etc.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 31 May, 2008, 09:00:22 pm
Not today, but in Wales this past week:

lots of red kites
lots of buzzards
a pied flycatcher feeding its baby near Strata Florida
a pair of pied flycatchers near the Rheidol power station
dolphins from Aberystwyth prom
plus quite a lot of assorted other things
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 31 May, 2008, 11:31:39 pm
Baby starlings invading the bird table lately.  They can feed themselves easily, but when the parent comes too, they insist on being fed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 02 June, 2008, 08:12:22 am
A few days ago in Corfu we saw a school of dolphin in the bay here (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=122.120). It was after sunset and just getting dark. They went past in a leisurely fashion heading northwards.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 02 June, 2008, 10:10:07 pm
An owl on the Lecht - very pale, barn owl?
Nearly ran over a red squirrel near Dinnet.
A weasel or stoat dashing across the road with something in its mouth - I think the former as it was really tiny.
1 brown hare, 1 mountain hare.
Red grouse.
Buzzards, kestrel.
And a deer crossing the river Don.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: IanDG on 02 June, 2008, 10:19:22 pm
seen on Great Bernera, near Bosta beach on Friday

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2203/2541514328_7fc09c235f.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2062/2540693863_bfd7abd3a0.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bomber on 03 June, 2008, 01:12:33 pm
Seen the night before last, a baby blue tit fast asleep on my windowcill!

(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y251/ailienated/956d7b72.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 03 June, 2008, 01:27:10 pm
Awwww!  We're well into fledging time now, as was proven by the live (and unharmed) birdy gift (baby sparrow I think) that I was presented with yesterday morning by my cat-share!  No photo - too busy trying to encourage him into a tree before heading off to work.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 03 June, 2008, 03:34:47 pm
For the last couple of weeks I've been watching the progress of a brood belonging to a pair of Egyptian Geese (similar to shellducks if you know the type).

They have nine goslings, all of which seem to have survived so far...although I feel like I'm tempting fate by mentioning that.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 05 June, 2008, 02:10:11 pm
Perhaps a less-than-welcome sighting: Harlequin Ladybird. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlequin_ladybird)
Settled on my shirt for a few seconds as I was out cycling this lunchtime.
They are a known pest and are displacing our native species I believe, but I don't know whether sightings should be reported in some way...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimC on 05 June, 2008, 06:47:43 pm
Had bloody stacks of them hibernating in my house last winter. They didn't last long...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 05 June, 2008, 11:26:41 pm
Often when arrive home from work, I have to avoid riding over toys, bikes, scooters, balls, etc., in the driveway. Today I had to dodge this:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3099/2554836856_0fcc60f2cf.jpg) (http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3099/2554836856_0fcc60f2cf_b.jpg)

Doing this:


(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3188/2554842814_b3ebc737d6.jpg) (http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3188/2554842814_b3ebc737d6_b.jpg)

[click for bigger]
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 June, 2008, 11:32:32 pm
What sort of snake is that, Scott? And is it a toad it's consuming?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 05 June, 2008, 11:36:17 pm
It's a garter snake (haven't had a chance to narrow it down farther yet), and that is a toad.

That's the biggest, or at least widest, garter that I've seen; I'm wondering if it's gravid. I'll try to figure out the species once I get a chance. Time for us to down our own toads, er, have dinner now...

edit: it was an Eastern Garter. I determined this through a long, involved, complex process which involved looking in the field guide and seeing that the Eastern is the only species that's here.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: marna on 05 June, 2008, 11:38:09 pm
Perhaps a less-than-welcome sighting: Harlequin Ladybird. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlequin_ladybird)
Settled on my shirt for a few seconds as I was out cycling this lunchtime.
They are a known pest and are displacing our native species I believe, but I don't know whether sightings should be reported in some way...

You can report them here if you like: Harlequin Ladybird Survey - home (http://www.harlequin-survey.org) - I don't know what they do with the information, though, other than plot the spread of the creatures. I've reported allotment ones a couple of times.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 06 June, 2008, 09:53:21 am
It seems a kestrel has moved into the field next to the office.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 09 June, 2008, 12:38:55 pm
It seems a kestrel has moved into the field next to the office.

One perched on a roadsign on the way in to work this am - about 10 feet from me.  And not today, but last week: a peregrine with a pigeon in it's claws, here (http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&hl=en&geocode=&q=porthpean&ie=UTF8&ll=50.293191,-4.773581&spn=0.00414,0.006266&t=h&z=17).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobajobrob on 09 June, 2008, 06:26:22 pm
A small dragonfly clinging onto my finger. You can't see it but the tail had red and black stripes.

(http://www.robshields.org/~rshields/2008/06/dragonfly.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pancho on 09 June, 2008, 08:51:29 pm
An owl!

There I was having a crafty fag out of sight of the house when a white owl swooped over my bonce. I think he must have been in the tree I was standing under.

Very Harry Potter.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 10 June, 2008, 02:58:56 pm
Two dead badgers on Sunday.  However, they were spotted from the car, so don't count in the AUK Dead Badger Challenge.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 11 June, 2008, 08:44:57 am
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 12 June, 2008, 12:33:59 am
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..

Wot, in Essex / Cambridge? :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 12 June, 2008, 12:36:45 am
Fox cubs! Lots of them - well, four or five at least I'd say. Beautiful spindly little creatures with enormous pointy ears.

One of them had clearly had a mishap of some sort which had deprived him of about ⅔ of his tail.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 12 June, 2008, 08:33:33 am
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..

Wot, in Essex / Cambridge? :o

apparently yes - I wouldnt know a red kite if one bit me on the arse, but I was in the pub garden watching it and everyone was getting vey excited.  Several people knew about a breeding pair over by saffron walden which is only 3 or 4 miles away.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 12 June, 2008, 08:47:28 am
Just saw our cat come within a gnat's whisker of catching a cockatiel in the garden.  :-\

She's not tasted one of those before!  Nom! Nom! Nom!   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 14 June, 2008, 09:00:10 am
A greater spotted woodpecker on the apple tree in our garden.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 16 June, 2008, 11:20:43 am
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..

Wot, in Essex / Cambridge? :o

I saw one near Alconbury last year, and must admit to being quite surprised.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: harrumph on 16 June, 2008, 11:26:06 am
I saw one near Alconbury last year, and must admit to being quite surprised.

Nah - they're like great crested newts these days.

Just like 'em. Except with feathers and that.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 17 June, 2008, 11:07:14 am
Well yesterday actually a wild black rabbit .
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimC on 17 June, 2008, 06:15:37 pm
Swallows in our water meadow. They fly like they really enjoy it! I can't remember when I last saw them in the open like that.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: simonali on 18 June, 2008, 09:15:57 pm
Had a kestrel land right in front of my car earlier. Luckily I was already braking for a corner, otherwise it woulda been a deceased one!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 19 June, 2008, 04:50:04 pm
A lizard ran across the road in front of me today.

Sadly he was going left to right just as 3 cars were heading towards me. I didn't stop to look to see if he made it.  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 21 June, 2008, 06:00:10 pm
A stoat bouncing across the Baydon road, just after the M4 tunnel.

Oh, and a muntjac yesterday morning, but they're unattractive vermin  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 21 June, 2008, 06:09:21 pm
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..

Wot, in Essex / Cambridge? :o

I saw one near Alconbury last year, and must admit to being quite surprised.
We were driving up the M40 last month and saw what definitely looked like two red kites flying above the motorway somewhere near Aylesbury.  Unless someone can suggest any other large raptor-like bird with a deeply forked tail, that they could have been...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 21 June, 2008, 06:16:21 pm
They're fairly common round here, but two at once is unusual.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 21 June, 2008, 06:21:35 pm
We were driving up the M40 last month and saw what definitely looked like two red kites flying above the motorway somewhere near Aylesbury.  Unless someone can suggest any other large raptor-like bird with a deeply forked tail, that they could have been...

Those are red kites. There are always lots of them to be seen when on the M40 between Wycombe and Stokenchurch
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: simonali on 22 June, 2008, 10:43:06 am
Saw a green woodpecker in my work car park on Friday. Made a right old racket as it flew off upon seeing me!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 22 June, 2008, 02:21:49 pm
(http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y31/YakDiver/snake.jpg)
seen in my sister garden, today I've seen two more and I'm looking after the place while their away
could they come into the house for I'm shit scared of them
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nutkin on 22 June, 2008, 07:46:28 pm
Not today, but I couldn't find the usb lead last week.  ::-)


He was wandering down the road, out on his evening constitutional, completely oblivious to the traffic. I watched him for a few minutes before he disappeared behind some wheelie bins.
(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3237/2600715299_2db0457d5b.jpg?v=0)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nutkin on 22 June, 2008, 07:57:20 pm
seen in my sister garden, today I've seen two more and I'm looking after the place while their away
could they come into the house for I'm shit scared of them

Unlikely! Grass snakes are too timid to brave it I would have thought. If you frighten them they'll play dead until you go away.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bobb on 22 June, 2008, 10:07:24 pm
I used to see loads of grass snakes when I lived in Cambs. They are indeed timid and the only times I ever saw them was when playing golf. They curled up in the hole, which was probably the safest place to be when I'm waving a stick around!  :P
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 June, 2008, 11:15:14 pm
Grass snakes are completely harmless unless you do what I was in the habit of doing as a kid, and that's catching them. They squirt a particularly pungent liquid from their anus and it don't arf pong! I remember my clothes going through the washing machine two or three times and there was still Essence of Rancid Grass-snake about them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 June, 2008, 11:16:12 pm
Common lizard, sunning itself on the pavement in Battlesbridge. It scuttled into the grass as I rode past.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 22 June, 2008, 11:16:53 pm
Came flying round corner on mountain bike today... to find a Buzzard (or something similar) on the path 25m in front.  Stopped quickly, but it flew off with its prey.  Not sure what the prey was, but it had a tail a few inches long.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 23 June, 2008, 01:18:38 pm
I read somewhere, that it has recently been discovered that the Grass Snake has a venom sac in its head - but it has no fangs and there is no duct to take the venom to the teeth.  Singularly useless facility in that case, if you ask me.  Must do a bit of Googling...

I saw yesterday what I think was an adder, lying across my path as I cycled through the village of Partridge Green in Sussex.  As soon as it sensed my approach it whisked off like lightning into someone's front garden.  I had only the briefest of glimpses and didn't see it properly, I suppose it could have been a small grass snake.  The head shape didn't suggest a slow-worm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 23 June, 2008, 08:51:29 pm
a red kite, circling over the primary school playground..

Wot, in Essex / Cambridge? :o

I saw one near Alconbury last year, and must admit to being quite surprised.
We were driving up the M40 last month and saw what definitely looked like two red kites flying above the motorway somewhere near Aylesbury.  Unless someone can suggest any other large raptor-like bird with a deeply forked tail, that they could have been...

They probably were red kites. Road-runner lives in that neck of the woods and mentioned them during his strawberry visit here.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 24 June, 2008, 09:51:05 am
We were driving up the M40 last month and saw what definitely looked like two red kites flying above the motorway somewhere near Aylesbury.  Unless someone can suggest any other large raptor-like bird with a deeply forked tail, that they could have been...

Those are red kites. There are always lots of them to be seen when on the M40 between Wycombe and Stokenchurch

Last time I did the Upper Thames 200 there were about ten soaring over Watlington, probably planning to descend mob-handed and make off with some innocent householder's dustbin.

I witnessed one cruising at road level on the long drag after Rhayader on the Cambrian 600 last year, and that was truly a sight to behold.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bomber on 25 June, 2008, 08:16:28 am
The day before yesterday I saw loads of Chamois and a few Marmottes ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 27 June, 2008, 10:18:57 am
Baby goldfinches ranged along the top bar on the hanging feeder while Mum and Dad goldfinch collect seeds from the feeder and fly up to feed the babies.  As the parents come up, the babies open their mouths and flap their wings very fast.  So sweet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 27 June, 2008, 07:37:34 pm
A wagtail singing (that's a first for me) and lots of what I think are very very small stag beetles.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 29 June, 2008, 05:19:39 pm
On my ride today I saw, a deer, a hare, two rabbits, a squirrel, a snake and a pheasant all had dies by bloody motor cars, the snake at first I thought it was just the skin, but I turned back to have a closer look it was well and truly flattened , but and you could see the vertebra, the skin colour has a bluish tint to it not too sure what that was.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mike J on 29 June, 2008, 05:43:57 pm
I've seen some geese today, a whole family (including cygnets), they were crossing the road near Bluewater,.

Why do people feel the need to toot them to say get out of the way?  >:(  I've never understood this, as we were in a car and would have waited for them to cross if they walked in front of us.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 29 June, 2008, 10:43:20 pm
the snake at first I thought it was just the skin...the skin colour has a bluish tint to it not too sure what that was.
Adders can sometimes appear bluish, especially the less common melanic form (the more normal type is greenish-yellow).  Or possibly a slow-worm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: goatpebble on 02 July, 2008, 09:37:23 pm
The day before yesterday I saw loads of Chamois and a few Marmottes ;D

Bloody marmots.

They like risotto, y'know. And chocolate.

Instant spaetzle, well, they will tear your tent apart to get it. Can't be bothered to go to the village store, the little hooligans.


Ps. Chamois get curious and will eat your unattended headwear.





Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 16 July, 2008, 12:03:12 pm
A tiny (even by wren standards) wren trying to catch and subdue a large butterfly on our terraced yard.  There wasn't a lot of size difference, it was a prolonged struggle and the 'fly nearly got away with it :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JonBuoy on 16 July, 2008, 12:51:15 pm
...well a couple of days ago actually.  A badger crossing the track 50m in front of me with three slightly smaller badgers tagging along behind.  These are the first ones that I have ever seen that weren't either dead or on TV.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 16 July, 2008, 06:12:06 pm
Ants and ants and ants and ants!  >:(  The bottom of the garden has become a no-go.  I'm sorry, but boiling water is the only answer.  I feel horrid.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 20 July, 2008, 07:40:24 pm
At around 2am on this road in Suffolk (I know, I know) the dark shape of a fox exploding from one hedge and vanishing into the one opposite.  Made us jump.

Gmaps Pedometer (http://www.gmap-pedometer.com/?r=2096171)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 20 July, 2008, 07:42:43 pm
Charlotte, Liz and I watched a muntjac for some time before it disappeared into the undergrowth.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 20 July, 2008, 09:57:38 pm
Over the weekend, we saw:

Red kites - up to sixteen gliding over the field

Longtailed tits - a large flock of them ???

Pied wagtails - all over

bats

Hares

Rabbits

Interesting large black beetle with purple lines on its back and a vivid blue detail on its head I found in my shoe
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wobbly John on 20 July, 2008, 10:00:05 pm
Charlotte, Liz and I watched a muntjac for some time before it disappeared into the undergrowth.

One scurried down the road in front of me at Darsham, before suddenly diving through a hole in the hedge.

Saw a huge herd of deer a few miles before we crossed the A12.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 21 July, 2008, 11:38:06 am
Oh - I nearly forgot - on the way out of Stowmarket towards Needham Market (whoops), rabbits *everywhere*, on the verges, roundabouts and road.  Live ones.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 22 July, 2008, 06:08:17 am
yesterday evening out with mrs mike we saw a hedgehog, sprinting across the lane in front of us (honestly, no wonder they get squished all the time, they really do need longer legs), then a couple of miles later a guineafowl ran across, then as we got closer to home a roe deer bounded out of the hedge, stopped and looked at us, then did a huge 'sproing' and leapt over the bank on the other side of the road.  We waited for the inevitable herd to follow it over but it seemed to be billy-no-mates (or they were hiding).

on the dun run, I had a rat run out in front of me, stand and stare at me for a second then think better of it and run back to where it'd come from.  Cheeky sod.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 22 July, 2008, 12:22:20 pm
Deer amaze me. That there could be so many of such a large creature living all over the country and yet you rarely see them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 22 July, 2008, 07:34:19 pm
All over the place: giant flying ants. Glad I'm not cycling through them. Bleurgh.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 July, 2008, 07:39:05 pm
Deer amaze me. That there could be so many of such a large creature living all over the country and yet you rarely see them.

The North Essex / Suffolk / Cambs herd are often seen. A few years ago I was eating my lunch here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=554550&y=236115&z=4&sv=554550,236115&st=4&ar=Y&mapp=newmap.srf&searchp=newsearch.srf), facing west, and in the wheatfield down the slope I counted no fewer than 44 fallow deer in the herd.

They must cost the farmers a fortune in damaged crops.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 22 July, 2008, 11:15:48 pm
At work: 2 peregrines flying round over the cathedral
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 23 July, 2008, 10:19:25 am
All over the place: giant flying ants. Glad I'm not cycling through them. Bleurgh.

Yep, here too.  Yesterday seems to have marked the start of the flying ant1 season, and the spiders in the garden are waxing fat.

1 - it has always amused my tiny brane that Germans always pronounce this "aunt".  "Noes! There are aunts in the kitchen!"
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 23 July, 2008, 01:28:20 pm
Hate those flying ants.  Once got damn nigh hospitalised by the things.

There were loads near work, but not flying.  And a few close to NSTN's flat where we pitched Sam's tent (tho they'd gone to bed before we pitched).

I think I rode through a few, but uggghhhh! *shudder*

PS:  I really like ants.  Just very allergic to the bites.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 23 July, 2008, 07:30:08 pm
Unfortunately, I've had to get brutal with the Nippon powder this year, and I hate having to do that.  I've encouraged them to leave in every way I can think of.  Good side effect is that it's got the wasps to make themselves scarce too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 23 July, 2008, 08:04:16 pm
The ants are gone. A one day wonder.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 23 July, 2008, 08:44:08 pm
All over the place: giant flying ants. Glad I'm not cycling through them. Bleurgh.

Yep, here too.  Yesterday seems to have marked the start of the flying ant1 season, and the spiders in the garden are waxing fat.

1 - it has always amused my tiny brane that Germans always pronounce this "aunt".  "Noes! There are aunts in the kitchen!"

It amuses me that anyone could ever pronounce the two words differently :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 25 July, 2008, 09:19:22 am
A baby alpaca1 yesterday evening on my way home.  Can't have been more than a few days old.  It looked a bit unsteady on its legs, but already quite shaggy.  Very ahhhh-ish. 

1 Or maybe a llama.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 July, 2008, 10:43:45 pm
After my swim, a lot of small fish scattering as something had a go at them from below. This continued all the way along the beach for as far as I could see. Could well have been mackerel attacking krill. I've never seen that in Southend before.

Just after I arrived home, Mrs. Wow had captured what we think was a Poplar Hawk Moth, inside the house. I tried to get some photos but it was in danger of injuring itself on the inside of the jar so we let it go.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Quisling on 28 July, 2008, 10:47:07 pm
Not today, but on Saturday evening MiniQ and I tootled off for a 15 miler on Sigurd the tandem and happened past a llama (the work of a llama-farmer no doubt) and also a big fox crossing the road. The fox, not the llama, just in case you were wondering.

And a dead badger. :sick:

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andyoxon on 29 July, 2008, 12:32:57 pm
Last night, very warm and wet as it was, practically everywhere you looked in our garden there was a frog.  I put the garden light on and went out with a torch, to meet and greet.  :)  Said frogs do not mind human company it seems and will happily sit there while you take a good look.  Also played interact-a-species by putting snails on collision courses with frogs - frog shuffles out the way btw.  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: tiermat on 29 July, 2008, 12:46:22 pm
Yesterday morning, on my commute, a young cow (this year's calf) ruminating in the middle of the road.  gave me a bit of a shock it did, didn't seem to bother him...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 29 July, 2008, 01:04:17 pm
This morning, I nearly rode through the biggest slug I've ever seen.  I saw something that looked like a large dog poo in the path ahead and moved to one side, only as I went past did I see that it was a slug.  It must have been about 5" or so long and about the circumference of my bicycle pump, no word of a lie.  It was a monster.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 29 July, 2008, 08:31:40 pm
This evening, one huge, beautiful, green dragonfly and one small brown owl!  A Little Owl I think.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Luke on 03 August, 2008, 07:07:42 pm
Yesterday, out of a train window, a fox.

Sat happily in the sun at the edge of a field watching the trains go past.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 07 August, 2008, 01:22:36 pm
Rather unusually a fox in the middle of Clapham Common, which I've never seen before.  I quite regularly see foxes on my way home, but normally it's somewhere like Tooting Bec Common, where there is plenty of undergrowth and/or banks that they could be living in.  Clapham Common at that point is just a vast exposed flat landscape, nowhere to hide really.  I guess it must have been digging around in the bins, or had found the remains of someone's barbecue.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 08 August, 2008, 09:37:48 am
Funnily enough, I sawa fox, too, yesterday.  Not so unusual in london I suppose, but I was sat in the meeting room of a GP surgery.  There is a small patch of grass in a walled area outside, and the fox sauntered past, took shelter from the rain, then, as the sun came out, s/he stretched out in the sunshine.  No concern for the people just the other side of the glass.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Maladict on 08 August, 2008, 06:02:31 pm
Giant two foot spiders crawling across my bedroom curtain.

Oh, wait.  Hallucination.  Though having just woken up at 2.20am I was too confused to realise this and for a few moments thought I was in trouble!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 15 August, 2008, 10:30:05 am
One large dead rat.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 August, 2008, 06:03:08 pm
Two common carp in the Priory Park lake. I could see only the mouth and eyes of the bigger, which may well hve weighed over 20lb Its mouth was almost 2" in diameter I reckon.

The other was a fully-scaled common, probably about 6lb and it appeared to be in beautiful condition. More than 30 years ago, when I did a lot of fishing, these lakes were renowned for their "wild" carp, the strain which had been in the lakes since they were the Priory's stew-pond from the 12th century onwards. Since the 1980s, modern strains of leather and mirror carp have been introduced and there are not many wildies left.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 24 August, 2008, 09:00:04 pm
Yesterday, on the Dulsie Dipper - 2 red sqrls. :-*
Today at the Potting Shed (http://www.drakesalpines.com/) - 3 red sqrls anna wooderypeckery. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 24 August, 2008, 09:18:49 pm
Coming home from Mildenhall yesterday, through Thetford Forest - a large Adder crossing the road. He/She made it over without getting squished  :thumbsup:.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 August, 2008, 11:09:53 pm
Today at the Potting Shed (http://www.drakesalpines.com/) - 3 red sqrls anna wooderypeckery. :)

And some remarkably fat chaffinches  :-X
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 August, 2008, 04:54:14 pm
Yesterday, whilst Reg and I were heading towards Prickwillow, a greater spotted woodpecker and what I'm reasonably sure was a hobby.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 25 August, 2008, 09:48:09 pm
A kite

First one I've seen since we moved to Wales - they were 10 a penny in Berkshire :)

This was hovering at the bottom of the Gospel pass, and shouting its head off.  Really skwarking, constantly.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Luke on 26 August, 2008, 04:13:59 pm
When riding to and from Mildenhall at the weekend - a young deer*, 3 foxes, hundreds of rabbits and a hedgehog.  :thumbsup:




* I think. It was dark, and a very brief sighting. But can't think of anything else it could have been.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zipperhead on 29 August, 2008, 11:08:22 pm
We saw dolphins swimming in the estuary near Salcombe today. Everybody on the beach ran down to the water to watch. Amazing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 August, 2008, 11:20:03 pm
Four fallow deer, this afternoon somewhere near Good Easter.

They were the most spectacularly coloured I have ever seen - fox-red with beautiful white dappling. I think they must vary from year to year, as normally when I've seen them they are a pretty uniform dull brown in colour.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 01 September, 2008, 02:08:39 pm
Hornet.  'Buzzed' me just now, as I was completing my lunchtime ride.  Glad to see you, little fellow...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 03 September, 2008, 12:42:57 pm
A kingfisher, dashing upriver.  A little blue flash zooming along.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 03 September, 2008, 01:09:15 pm
Not today, nor particularly rare, but we saw lots of crested grebe around Suffolk & Cambridgeshire.  A very smart looking bird.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimC on 03 September, 2008, 02:43:00 pm
A kingfisher, dashing upriver.  A little blue flash zooming along.

Aren't they great? And so fast too! Yesterday, I was busy watching 'our' cygnets (who are more and more being left to their own devices by Mum) when a kingfisher flew between them at about shoulder height - to the swans!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimC on 03 September, 2008, 02:48:44 pm
Yesterday, while out kayaking, we found a young pike, about a foot long, sunning himself in the shallows by Cornard Mill. He was taking no notice of all the little chub and perch around him, and wasn't much phased by us either. He just gently glided back into the weeds to await his next meal...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 03 September, 2008, 06:42:35 pm
we found a young pike
Not today - but on our last circuit of Ditchling Common (not a million miles from the Beacon of that ilk), there were a lot of anglers (Anglerus obstreperus), with all their 'bits' spread across the path.  Reckon they were competing to hook the celebrated Ditchling Common Pike which is reputed to have lived in the pond these last 100 years and been hooked and thrown back more often than....

Actually, I tell a lie: I know of no such legend.  But occasionally we've spotted a Very Big Fish do a backflip in mid-pond...
Title: Re: Seen today - a lounge lizard
Post by: border-rider on 05 September, 2008, 11:59:59 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/lizard.jpg)

This chap is about 4 cm long.  He was wandering across the carpet in the lounge, looking at bit lost.

Very new.  I didn't realise they were in this area :)
Title: Re: Seen today - a lounge lizard
Post by: FatBloke on 06 September, 2008, 10:22:37 am
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/lizard.jpg)

This chap is about 4 cm long.  He was wandering across the carpet in the lounge, looking at bit lost.

Very new.  I didn't realise they were in this area :)
Looks more like a newt than a lizard.  :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 06 September, 2008, 10:25:33 am
And Fatters works in a bar. He's seen a few.  :thumbsup:

Actually, I agree, I think it is newtish.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 06 September, 2008, 10:31:21 am
Where's Ken Livingstone when you need him?!   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 06 September, 2008, 10:32:06 am
No longer the force he was - he's been newtered.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 07 September, 2008, 05:07:36 pm
Mrs MV reports a pair in the hall last night

If they are newts then it's a bit of a damning indictment of how damp the house is :0
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 08 September, 2008, 01:03:49 pm
A squirrel running around in our garden.

Not very noteworthy for some, but, in the 40 odd years that this house has been in our family, it's the first time I've seen one.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 08 September, 2008, 10:27:05 pm
Some pals of ours went to the British Museum last week. Whilst sitting outside in the Chinese garden, Kay spotted an unusual bird and didn't know what it was. She asked her husband and he didn't know either.

When they got home they looked it up and they are certain it was a wryneck, a rare visitor. Kay made a mention of this sighting on the Southend RSPB website and now the London birdwatchers have picked this up and are getting very excited by it. None of them seem to have seen it though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 09 September, 2008, 12:56:52 pm
Bouncing across the lane in front of me yesterday a lovely stoat.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zoidburg on 09 September, 2008, 06:43:10 pm
Bouncing across the lane in front of me yesterday a lovely stoat.
Are you sure it wasnt a weasel?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 10 September, 2008, 10:58:17 am
Bouncing across the lane in front of me yesterday a lovely stoat.
Are you sure it wasnt a weasel?

You absolutely sure you wanna go through with this?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 September, 2008, 04:24:11 pm
An amusing drama.

Dez and I went into the garden to pick walnuts, and came in with a washing-up bowl about half-full.

I could hear a squirrel in the false acacia just outside our garden, clearly after our nuts, but I could see a cat, clearly after the squirrel's. For quite some time the squirrel was making its alarm call, and the cat was circumspectly pursuing the much more agile squirrel. At one point the squirrel panicked and almost scrambled into the waiting arms of the cat.

I think they are both up in the tree still.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zoidburg on 10 September, 2008, 05:19:33 pm
Bouncing across the lane in front of me yesterday a lovely stoat.
Are you sure it wasnt a weasel?

You absolutely sure you wanna go through with this?
The forum requests, nay, demands! that we do old chap
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 11 September, 2008, 03:54:34 pm
Bouncing across the lane in front of me yesterday a lovely stoat.
Are you sure it wasnt a weasel?

You absolutely sure you wanna go through with this?
The forum requests, nay, demands! that we do old chap

OK then here we go:-

Zoiders, how do I tell if was a Stoat or a Weasel ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 September, 2008, 04:00:41 pm
*drums fingers*
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 September, 2008, 04:02:02 pm
*fails to resist temptation*

<strangulated voice>
One's weasily distinguishable...
</strangulated voice>
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 September, 2008, 04:03:18 pm
*Oh god go on then!*

And the other's stoatally different!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 11 September, 2008, 04:24:03 pm
Have we got it out of our systems now ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 September, 2008, 04:25:06 pm
Have we got it out of our systems now ;D

It's a tough job but somebody's got to do it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 16 September, 2008, 05:26:50 pm
Sparrowhawk taking a juvenile moorhen right outside my office window
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 18 September, 2008, 07:54:00 pm
Some blummin' big brown and white flappy thing, looked like a bird of prey of some kind but it was enormous.  I only saw it rise from the ground in front of me and flap away but I didn't have a chance to ID it as I was bumping down a dirt-track hill at the time, dodging bunnies.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 18 September, 2008, 07:56:07 pm
If it was big'n'brown'white it was likely a buzzard

Or a neagle ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 18 September, 2008, 07:57:28 pm
Sparrowhawk taking a juvenile moorhen right outside my office window

Mrs Moorhen looking a bit sad today, wandering round where the feathers are,  with just one offspring left  :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 25 September, 2008, 10:07:02 pm
Nocturnal urban wildlife:

A fox here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=325865&y=672257&z=1&sv=hatton+place&st=6&tl=Hatton+Place,+Edinburgh,+EH9&searchp=newsearch.srf&mapp=newmap.srf) crossing the road in front of the bike just after midnight on Sunday/Monday

A bat here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/newmap.srf?x=326864&y=672104&z=1&sv=blacket+avenue&st=6&tl=Blacket+Avenue,+Edinburgh,+EH9&searchp=newsearch.srf&mapp=newmap.srf) hawking insects around a streetlamp as I walked home from the bus-stop last night.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 26 September, 2008, 08:56:17 am
I had this visitor to my garden at 8 o'clock this morning.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3048/2888817671_212cf41472.jpg?v=0)

but she slunk off right by my kitchen door.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3263/2888822715_c755038954.jpg?v=0)

Must pick some of those ripe tomatoes...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 26 September, 2008, 09:01:37 am
If it was big'n'brown'white it was likely a buzzard
Comment on the 'bigness' of this bird - when, once, one nearly flew head-on into my car, and for a fraction of a second I got a closeup underside view at a range of a couple of metres - I could have sworn that its wingspan would have covered the windscreen!  It was a scary moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 27 September, 2008, 07:55:41 pm
Buzzards, stoat (careful now  ::-) ) & red squirrel on today's ride  :thumbsup: And somebody ran over a chicken.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 28 September, 2008, 01:47:04 pm
Bit of a ruckus over our house this morning - sparrowhawk being advised by a big crow in no uncertain terms that it was, ahem, Not Welcome Here.  Took quite a lot of seeing off, they kept circling over the neighbours' gardens.  Eventually the hawk made off.  We don't often get sparrowhawks around our place.  This may be the reason why.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 September, 2008, 01:51:51 pm
Buzzards, stoat (careful now  ::-) ) & red squirrel on today's ride  :thumbsup: And somebody ran over a chicken.

YouTube - Chicken Tonight Ad (1993) (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=a3ov9eNB7E4&feature=related)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 September, 2008, 07:03:45 pm
A buzzard near Bradwell power station.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 28 September, 2008, 07:48:27 pm
A buzzard near Bradwell power station.
No osprey?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 28 September, 2008, 08:09:34 pm
Took down the blue-tit nestbox today.   Not good news.  Skeletons of three chicks, plus one unhatched egg.  This is worse than previous years.  We hope the parents at least managed to raise some young to maturity this year, but we're not sure.  :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 28 September, 2008, 08:51:37 pm
Fungi:

(http://i50.photobucket.com/albums/f330/Pinniped/ACF/WTWTA/fungi01.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 28 September, 2008, 09:08:20 pm
*waiting with anticipation for Zipperhead's photos of deer in the mist*
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 September, 2008, 10:45:27 pm
A buzzard near Bradwell power station.
No osprey?

It didn't seem to hve any prey, either large or small...

Oh, I see what you mean. No, no ospreys.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bomber on 28 September, 2008, 10:48:55 pm
Pigs!

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3111/2879436060_56e7cee750.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 29 September, 2008, 10:43:27 am
In Richmond Park: A squirrel hopping up into a sweet chestnut tree, and fetching down a biiig seedcase.  Bit odd, as there are loads of open cases lying around on the floor where we were sitting (ouch!).

Anyway, a couple of moments later, the squirrel went up into the tree, carrying an unopened seedcase.  To put it back again? ???
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 September, 2008, 12:28:30 pm
A glorious walk this morning to Hadleigh Castle, where tea and excellent bread pudding was consumed at the Sally Army café. Just as we left, I saw a flurry of feathers as a sparrowhawk caught a collared dove. It then succeeded in flying off with it, although I didn't see whether the dove was already dead. It went into a hawthorn tree, and stayed there judging by the fuss made by jays and magpies. We trained our binoculars on the tree but didn't see the sparrowhawk again.

Oh, and we saw a wheatear, so not all the summer visitors have gone yet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 30 September, 2008, 10:56:56 am
While on me holibobs:

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 30 September, 2008, 12:51:46 pm
Ooh-  when we were trundling near the Thames, we had a ruddy great heron fly directly over the top of us!  It was a bit like an eclipse.

At Brooklands, we also saw a Dove, a Kestrel, and a Hawk(er).  Not to mention a Merlin and a Bluebird.  Though they weren't birds... :P
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 30 September, 2008, 01:35:52 pm
While on me holibobs:

  • Skunk (also dead)

Theer is, of course, a song about that:

YouTube - Loudon Wainwright performs Dead Skunk at Rockpalast Germany (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=doqTSev-_lQ)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 01 October, 2008, 10:52:20 pm
While on me holibobs:
Very large raptor of unknown make (though I think probably McDonnell-Douglas)
Lockheed, surely
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 02 October, 2008, 02:30:35 pm
A snake.  Don't know what sort, but about six inches long, dark grey in colour and with a light v-shaped marking on the back of its head.  Not the sort of thing one expects to encounter in Harlow station car park!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: harrumph on 02 October, 2008, 02:35:06 pm
Fungi:

Oooh, nice fungus, Pingu  :thumbsup: (I collect ones I see, in picture form).

And a very superior photo, too - what camera do you use? Is it a physically small one?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 October, 2008, 02:54:45 pm
For some odd reason, yesterday I saw loads of crows/ravens (dirty great big black things anyway).  Whereas normally cycling across Tooting Bec and Clapham Commons, you'll often see a load of pigeons digging around looking for insects on the grass, yesterday the crows seemed to have replaced them.  This morning the pigeons were back, and the crows gone again.

I guess it must have been something to do with the weather/wind speed ... ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 02 October, 2008, 05:42:00 pm
A snake.  Don't know what sort, but about six inches long, dark grey in colour and with a light v-shaped marking on the back of its head.  Not the sort of thing one expects to encounter in Harlow station car park!
V marking open end forwards? A baby grass snake?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 October, 2008, 11:51:00 am
This morning I had a splendid view of a greater spotted woodpecker, about 80' up in a sycamore tree, showing itself on some dead branches at the top. It stayed there for quite some time, making quite a bit of noise against the backdrop of a cloudless sky. I wish I'd taken my binoculars.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 03 October, 2008, 12:21:19 pm
We had one that came to the tree in our garden quite often. Now the tree is chopped down no more woodpeckers or squirrels :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 03 October, 2008, 07:14:11 pm
A pigeon with two legs but only one foot. Seemed perfectly happy. That's a Robin and  a Pigeon I have seen with this impediment now, I might start a book or something.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 03 October, 2008, 10:42:18 pm
Saw a red squirrel in Hamsterley Forest :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pete on 05 October, 2008, 01:00:30 pm
A pigeon with two legs but only one foot. Seemed perfectly hoppy.
FTFY.
Sorry, couldn't resist.  IGMC...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 October, 2008, 06:07:53 pm
Fallow deer, when I was running :)

Fallow Deer (http://www.bds.org.uk/fallow.html)

4 females/juveniles today, and a damn big male on Monday.  Very distinctive horns.

They were in nondescript grey winter colours though
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 30 October, 2008, 07:52:04 am
A pigeon with two legs but only one foot. Seemed perfectly happy. That's a Robin and  a Pigeon I have seen with this impediment now, I might start a book or something.


One footed pigeons are a regular sight in London - not quite sure why.  We have two regular feathered visitors who are unipedal...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Analog Kid on 30 October, 2008, 08:38:39 am
Just seen our "commuting" heron getting mugged mobbed by a pair of crows.

Regarding the uniped birds (do they fly in circles due to uneven drag and weight distribution?)..

Many years ago I remember being told by people that worked in a huge coldstore that all the birds that flew in and couldn't get eventually suffered the consequences of frost bite..

..although I feel there's large pinch of salt and urban mythery about this.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 02 November, 2008, 10:23:00 am
Hundreds and hundreds of geese flying over in formation. Presumably arriving to over winter here from the Arctic. Twas a wonderful sight and sound set against an icy blue winter sky.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 05 November, 2008, 10:57:04 pm
Tonight was the first time I've seen a hedgehog in our garden, ruddy huge it was too  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Analog Kid on 06 November, 2008, 06:05:55 pm
28 starlings and 2 goldfinches on the telegraph wires (power cables actually) that run alongside our garden at 4.30pm today.

All in one long line.

Would've made a good picture, didn't have a camera to hand unfortunately.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 06 November, 2008, 06:36:47 pm
28 starlings and 2 goldfinches on the telegraph wires (power cables actually) that run alongside our garden at 4.30pm today.

All in one long line.

That sounds very "For The Birds" (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Sg39dHNQkUU). ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 November, 2008, 05:09:58 pm
I counted 95 avocets at Two Tree Island this morning. The tide was in and the lagoon had lots of waders on it. Lapwings, ringed plovers, quite a few shovelers, dunlin, redshank, godwit, grey plovers, knots, teal. It was cold, wet and miserable. Must have made the buggers that flew in from Siberia feel quite at home - the weather and the archipelago.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 20 November, 2008, 11:50:14 am
Four foxes on the way home yesterday.  I was a bit later than usual (left work around midnight), and being midweek, by that time the roads were pretty quiet.  I obviously spooked a couple of them, since they suddenly legged it at speed when they saw or heard me!  They were spread out over my route, and none of them particularly close to a park or common, just bog standard urban residential roads.  The urban fox is clearly proliferating.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 20 November, 2008, 07:28:37 pm
A barn owl.  Possibly the same one that I saw earlier in the year, since it was only about five miles away from the spot.  It halted on a fencepost and I got as close as ten yards from it before it spooked and flapped away.


Later, another owl flew above me.  I think it was a tawny owl, since it was about the right size, but it was too dark for me to say for sure.

Also, a flock of sixty-eighty geese flew above me.  What a row they made!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 November, 2008, 01:56:46 pm
Several goldcrests in a flock of mostly long-tailed tits in the park this morning. Also had two sightings off green woodpeckers and heard a greater spotted. Two goldfinches.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 22 November, 2008, 03:47:09 am
Five more urban foxes, several of which were a bit surprised, and one small rotund brown and white DSH out on the prowl near Norbury Station, who most definitely was very surprised by a cyclist at this time of night. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 November, 2008, 08:35:03 am
DSH?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 22 November, 2008, 08:41:36 am
DSH?

Sorry, Domestic Short Hair ie a moggy.

Hell, it was 3am, you're lucky I understand that post! ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 22 November, 2008, 08:12:35 pm
My quest for waxwings remains fruitless but my wait for the no 38 bus this morning did give me the consolation of a nice little group of long tailed tits flitting about in the trees opposite.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 22 November, 2008, 09:57:25 pm
... and a 38 bus too, I hope  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 23 November, 2008, 08:01:47 am
Yes , and on time too !
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 23 November, 2008, 08:57:58 am
I just saw a fox in my back garden, failing to catch a pigeon for it's breakfast.  For all I have often seen foxes on the way home, this is the first time I've seen one in the garden, and it didn't care that I saw it, it peered back at me inside the kitchen, and continued to walk along the fence towards me.  It was actually quite a healthy looking bugger, the few foxes I've sen up close before, have been a bit on the skinny and mangy looking side, this one seemed to be pretty stout and well fed, with a thick coat, which it needed considering the thin layer of snow on the ground.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 29 November, 2008, 12:13:54 pm
A weasel running along the pavement in front of me and then nipping into a hole in the stone wall that surrounds Edinburgh Uni's Kings Buildings campus.  Is it just me or are weasels getting more numerous ? I went for years without seeing one and now I've seen 3 in the past 18 months.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 November, 2008, 12:18:00 pm
Goldcrests in my neighbour's garden this morning when I went to visit the compost heap.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 30 November, 2008, 11:06:56 am
My quest for waxwings remains fruitless but my wait for the no 38 bus this morning did give me the consolation of a nice little group of long tailed tits flitting about in the trees opposite.

Snap! (Apart from the bus)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 30 November, 2008, 06:54:13 pm
Sorry, I know this is a bit hollow without pictures but this morning whilst out with the dog we were treated to the most spectacular display of spiders webs that had gathered freezing fog overnight and were just amazing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CathH on 09 December, 2008, 01:02:05 pm
Those little brown moths are all over the road again.  Where do they go in the summer?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 09 December, 2008, 09:47:40 pm
Had a thin small young fox visit my garden at lunchtime last Wednesday.
Seemed to shiver in the cold; it had been frosty overnight.
Green woodpecker also visited my lawn.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 09 December, 2008, 10:30:19 pm
Green woodpecker today, um, I think as I was driving along the A21.

Sunday another Green woodpecker, shortly before I fell off my bike on Old Winchester Hill.

Sunday a gert big owl, perched on the electricity sub station just south of Three Bridges station. Or was it further south? I'll have to go backand check to make sure it's not a model.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 09 December, 2008, 10:34:27 pm
we've got a pair of green woodpeckers living in a tree in the garden behind ours. They're incredibly noisy, either bashing their heads against the tree or shouting at each other.

I saw a fox on sunday too, the closest I've ever been to one, right in the middle of cambridge.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 10 December, 2008, 12:50:25 am
There are times when the foxes fretty well rub their noses on my patio doors here in Londonton.
They don't seem to be tied to any time of day either.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 10 December, 2008, 09:15:18 am
Loads of mundane (but nice to look at) stuff recently: brown rats, mice/voles, herons, kestrels, foxes, rabbits, buzzards and some lovely looking Longhorn cattle (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Longhorns_037.jpg) on one farm.  Heard an owl on the way home last night too, but don't know what kind.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 December, 2008, 10:38:03 am
we've got a pair of green woodpeckers living in a tree in the garden behind ours. They're incredibly noisy, either bashing their heads against the tree or shouting at each other.

Green woodpeckers are the ones with the "yaffle" cry but it's greater spotted who are the head-bangers. They've also got a very distinctive, loud, staccato alarm call.

Three little egrets have taken up residence in the park for the past week or so. There were at least 50 ducks on the lake this morning, which was partially frozen (-8°C in my garden last night) and more than a dozen moorhens. The pool in which I regularly saw 3 tench, 2 pike and a large roach last winter has cleared with the cold weather, but so far all I've seen is one of the tench and some fairly small fish, probably roach.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 10 December, 2008, 10:40:47 am
Gosh that reminds me.  On Monday I was in a meeting.  I looked out the window, and a woodpecker landed on the tree just outside - a few feet away.

I couldn't concentrate after that, which was a shame, as I was chairing (and taking minutes)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 11 December, 2008, 11:19:02 am
  I looked out the window, and a woodpecker landed on the tree just outside - a few feet away.

What kind ?
I looked in to my garden earlier and saw a small flock of long-tailed tits
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 December, 2008, 11:23:51 am
There were quite a few long-tailed tits in the park this morning. I didn't see any goldcrests today, although they do tend to go about together. There were lots of mallards and I saw two of the little egrets this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 11 December, 2008, 11:41:33 am
  I looked out the window, and a woodpecker landed on the tree just outside - a few feet away.

What kind ?
...

Oh - nothing special - greater spotted.  It was just that I'd never seen one in the city before, and it was so close, fussing around the joint of a branch.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 14 December, 2008, 08:12:07 pm
On my pootle this afternoon I had my best view ever of sanderlings. Firstly there were five of them, feeding in shallow water not more than 30' from the sea wall in Westcliff. Then three more, which had been zooming past, took a sharp left to join their pals and they were followed by four more. I was very impressed how those in flight could easily pick out their chums on the beach from the best part of 50 yards away.

They are gorgeous little birds, at this time of year predominantly white but with a slate-grey bill and legs and a few black markings. In the late afternoon December murk, they gave the impression of being silver. They are very busy, like small battery-powered toys, darting in and out of the water to pick up whatever the waves were leaving behind, their legs moving almost as though they were riding invisible bicycles.

There were lots of people about and the birds took no notice until some great clod-hopping human stomped along the beach right where they were and that was the end of the fun.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 24 December, 2008, 10:24:52 am
There are times when the foxes fretty well rub their noses on my patio doors here in Londonton.
They don't seem to be tied to any time of day either.

I was in the midst of opening my front door on returning from work yesterday when the sleekest fattest fox I've ever seen calmly emerged from the undergrowth, passed within six inches of me, vaulted lightly over the fence and trotted off down Hamilton Road.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 26 December, 2008, 02:58:04 pm
A couple of red kites, circling over Reading. Not an uncommon sight nowadays. Saw one (maybe one of the same birds) yesterday.

Usual tits in the garden, but the finches have all buggered off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 26 December, 2008, 03:52:16 pm
There was a cloud of Tree Buntings in the front garden earlier. Tight social group, taking it in turns to feed from the bird table - but terminally fidgety. Great fun to watch.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 31 December, 2008, 11:09:48 pm
In Southend today: a Scotsman with nae troos.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 01 January, 2009, 10:46:58 am
At 01.00 on 1/1/09, a fox cub was jumping in and out of the half barrel planter by our patio doors, whilst we snuggled on the sofa listening to Rimsky-Korsakov.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 01 January, 2009, 09:25:59 pm
I'm not that enthusiastic that I'll record every bloody thing I see, like my pal does, but this morning the most memorable birds were (sings) two little egrets and a ring-necked parakeet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 01 January, 2009, 10:00:45 pm
A fine formation of geese, I'm not clever enough to identify them by their silhouette so I don't know the exact model. What is strange is how many I have seen in the skies around here over the last few weeks heading in all different directions. I'm wondering if they are being directed by air traffic control at Blackpool airport.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 03 January, 2009, 04:50:16 pm
A flock of about one hundred Whooper swans on the Ribble estuary. They don't half make a racket when they get disturbed and take flight (not my fault, there were a couple of wildfowlers in the vicinity).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 04 January, 2009, 04:12:26 pm
Yesterday: a tawny owl on the prowl at dusk near Needham Market.

Today: a kestrel near Ingatestone being mobbed by three magpies.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 04 January, 2009, 08:54:02 pm
Over the past week, on holiday in Dumfries & Galloway, staying in a cottage just outside Dalbeattie.  Loads of red squirrels, including one from the kitchen window on New Year's morning.  Red kites, white fronted geese and greylag, plus two nuthatches, at Dee Marshes, thousands of barnacle geese and good numbers of teal, pintail, wigeon, shoveller, and gadwall at Merse Head, and more of the same plus whooper swans and a couple of siskin at Caerlaverock.  All this and brilliant cycling too ! 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 04 January, 2009, 09:34:29 pm
A small flock of long tailed tits that visited my bird feeders now installed on a smashing faux lamp post type feeder made by a friend of mine as a Chritsmas pressie.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: токамак on 05 January, 2009, 09:20:32 am
Yesterday, cycling through Hertfordshire, country lanes, fields on either side, we saw many deer, big ones! At one point a small herd (maybe 12) were running along the edge of a field in the same direction that we were cycling, they were quite close - it did occur to us that they might suddenly dart across the road and across our path, but when they reached the end of the field they turned away from us and jumped through a gap in a hedgerow. It was brilliant.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 05 January, 2009, 09:54:57 am
Not seen today:

When I came into the car park this morning, there were two sets of human tracks.  There were a few cat tracks, and evidence of a scuffle in the middle, which was interesting, and there were two lines of fox tracks.

Cool.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 January, 2009, 01:57:34 pm
This morning at Two Tree Island the "scrape" was mostly frozen over, and there were very few birds present. However, at the other end of the island there was a stretch of open water in a pool there and I could not help but think of Mr. Larrington as I counted no fewer than 14 shovelers either swimming about or just standing around.

We also saw a couple of curlews, some brent geese, a few redshank and some teal.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 05 January, 2009, 02:08:00 pm
Yesterday, cycling through Hertfordshire, country lanes, fields on either side, we saw many deer, big ones! At one point a small herd (maybe 12) were running along the edge of a field in the same direction that we were cycling, they were quite close - it did occur to us that they might suddenly dart across the road and across our path, but when they reached the end of the field they turned away from us and jumped through a gap in a hedgerow. It was brilliant.

It always amazes me that we are surrounded by quite large numbers of such a large animal but rarely catch site of them. They are quite beautiful and tasty too  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 January, 2009, 05:51:29 pm
When I used to have to find something to do between teaching sessions in two different schools over 40 miles from home, I used to sometimes park the car here  (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/idmap.srf?x=554825&y=235205&z=120&sv=554825,235205&st=4&ar=Y&mapp=idmap.srf&searchp=ids.srf&lm=0) and look into the valley at whatever was going on. On more htan one occasion I saw a herd of deer in excess of 40 strong, and managed to get a really bad photograph.

There are lots of deer in the hills on the Essex/Herts/Cambs border.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 06 January, 2009, 08:41:31 am
Just before dawn this morning: a hare running across a frosty field.  Lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 07 January, 2009, 05:46:32 pm
According to me a smallish bird with a very long beak and according to an ornithologically inclined friend a snipe, trying to aerate the lawn.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 08 January, 2009, 10:46:05 am
Another, or possibly the same, fox this morning.  Trotting unconcernedly along the pavement as I locked the front door.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 08 January, 2009, 12:09:45 pm
Opened the garage door to get some kindling and out flew a Jenny Wren.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 08 January, 2009, 06:32:55 pm
A goldcrest, seen on a brief lunchtime walk at the east end of the Meadows, Edinburgh.  Also loads of redwings in the same place, superbly well camouflaged amongst the fallen leaves.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: IanDG on 09 January, 2009, 10:22:28 am
3  waxwings in the garden last week and a white tailed sea eagle on the Eishken estate last Sunday - My first ever sight of an eagle in the wild.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 09 January, 2009, 10:46:10 am
The bunrabs in the field net to work are back!

There used to be zillions of them, but then Mr & Mrs Suburban Fox1 moved in...

1 - 2.4 cubs, Ford Mondeo.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 10 January, 2009, 07:52:23 pm
Walking through the Meadows again today, a good group of long tailed tits and a very close up view (ie a few feet away) of a couple more goldcrests.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: woollypigs on 10 January, 2009, 09:32:04 pm
A rat running across the road with an empty half a liter bottle of fanta.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 11 January, 2009, 05:41:03 pm
Nothing much. A buzzard (weren't a kite, to my surprise - they're now common enough round here not to be worth commenting on), & a fox loping across the road, in broad daylight, as I cycled back into Reading this afternoon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 11 January, 2009, 05:51:23 pm
A lesser spotted woodpecker, which flew across our garden and into a tree a couple of doors away where it did some pecking.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JJ on 13 January, 2009, 01:42:29 am
In the very cold dark on Thursday night, somewhere between Cambridge and Oxford, two fine foxes dashing across the road in front (some miles apart from each other) and a lovely ghostly barn owl who kept me company for several hundred yards, just in the edge of my headlight beam.  I'm convinced this is some kind of hunting strategy, because I've had it happen several times in the past.

And since you ask, it was perishing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 14 January, 2009, 12:55:49 pm
A dead mouse frozen to the ground. I wanted to poke it with a stick to see if it was frozen all the way through, but I didn't.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pneumant on 14 January, 2009, 04:37:11 pm
On a walk today - a Kingfisher  and a Red Kite swooping down and scattering 3 Crows  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 14 January, 2009, 04:51:08 pm
In formation?  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pneumant on 14 January, 2009, 05:35:59 pm
Now that would be interesting ! Habitat Diversification and all that

Kingfisher - seen on Kennet and Avon Canal.

Red Kite - Seen flying over open farmland  (about 4 miles from the canal) with bits of deciduous woodland inbetween.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 14 January, 2009, 07:21:31 pm
An owl, flying above me on the way home tonight.   :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 16 January, 2009, 03:00:00 pm
Felis catus, crossing the A23 near Thornton Heath.  It won't keep all of it's nine lives very long if it makes a habit of crossing the road like that. :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 16 January, 2009, 03:07:59 pm
and a lovely ghostly barn owl who kept me company for several hundred yards, just in the edge of my headlight beam.  I'm convinced this is some kind of hunting strategy, because I've had it happen several times in the past.


I used to commute across the Berkshire Downs, from Lambourn to Harwell, and on a winter's night it could be an isolated old ride on the stretch around Farnborough.

I often used to get owls keeping me company just as you say, silently flying along overhead, just above the headlight beam for quite long distances.

Magical.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 16 January, 2009, 03:08:42 pm
seen today: a teenage Moorhen and a squirrel scrounging from the bird feeders by the back door :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 16 January, 2009, 04:17:55 pm
Yesterday morning at 3:30am. A deer stood by the side of the A64 watching the cars go past.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: chris667 on 19 January, 2009, 12:03:03 am
I saw loads of kites when I took the dog out today. Beautiful birds, and so red when the sun catches them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 19 January, 2009, 10:33:43 am
Seen last night - a fox on Sutton High Street.  Which reminds me that I spotted something I suspected was a small fox or a big cat in a quiet residential street I was walking down last week.  The brush disappeared up the side of a house, but, as I drew level, it stopped & turned round.  I think it could probably have got over or under the gate, but we stood there, watching each other at close range for a long few moments.  I felt the fox studying me for clues as to my intentions, and i could see it's legs ready for action, but not knowing which way to go.

I felt I was making the poor animal uneasy, so I turned and walked on.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 19 January, 2009, 03:50:06 pm
Common - a red kite over east Reading.

Unusual (but only because of the location) - a jackdaw on my bird table.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 20 January, 2009, 03:18:14 pm
I've found out why the blue tits aren't taking much from my bird feeder. Why didn't I notice this before? They're all over a big buddleia in a neighbours garden, eating the seeds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 21 January, 2009, 04:14:33 pm
This morning on the Wandle Delta I saw some pintail and gadwall ducks – there were the usual assortment of swans, mallards and tufted ducks too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 25 January, 2009, 10:32:34 am
A melanistic (black) pheasant in our lane. Not seen one near the village before. There used to be one near Castle Howard for several years.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 25 January, 2009, 10:37:07 am
A melanistic (black) pheasant in our lane. Not seen one near the village before. There used to be one near Castle Howard for several years.

I first started seeing these a few years ago near Hungerford and I was very excited.  After a year or two they became quite commonplace.  Handsome birds :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 25 January, 2009, 11:21:41 am
Mrs Pcolbeck says she has seen it in the garden. Might have to try and get a picture of it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 25 January, 2009, 12:05:43 pm
finally got a pic of this beauty today.. there's a green one that visits too, but havent seen him on the birdfeeder, he just pecks at the lawn.

(http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a19/mikes99mail/5D-1222.jpg)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 25 January, 2009, 12:24:28 pm
finally got a pic of this beauty today.. there's a green one that visits too, but havent seen him on the birdfeeder, he just pecks at the lawn.

(http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a19/mikes99mail/5D-1222.jpg)



Nice photo!

Greens are primarily ground feeders so it's quite normal to see them on lawns (or pecking at the interstices between patio slabs).  I quite often see them feeding on the ground in Richmond Park ( parakeets too but less often)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 25 January, 2009, 05:57:41 pm
Lambs! Spring is springing.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 26 January, 2009, 01:42:26 pm
Two swans flying .
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 26 January, 2009, 02:02:58 pm
OK - it was yesterday and it isn't that wild.  :)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3536/3226987166_7070868cd4_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 29 January, 2009, 01:02:54 pm
The first cherry blossoms.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 29 January, 2009, 07:01:03 pm
A very large number of lapwing at a water treatment plant in Hampton.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jezza on 30 January, 2009, 12:08:01 pm
A fieldmouse, hanging upside-down on the bird feeder while feasting on peanuts.   
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 30 January, 2009, 03:56:18 pm
A Hare, a great close up view of a Kestral and what I suppose had to be a Pied Wagtail but it just didn't look right at all. I only caught a glimpse of it flying over a ditch by the side of the road but if it wasn't for the time of year I would have sworn it was a Pied Flycatcher. The movement and the amount of black were all wrong for a wagtail.

Also, wait for this; Daffodils in full bloom! I've seen quite a few with buds showing already but full bloom in January in Lancashire. Crazy.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 30 January, 2009, 05:41:39 pm
A fieldmouse, hanging upside-down on the bird feeder while feasting on peanuts.   

Wow

I've only ever seen one dead - brought in by the cat, I'm sorry to say.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Paulapops on 30 January, 2009, 09:36:34 pm
A stoat crossed the road in front of me this morning
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jezza on 30 January, 2009, 10:53:41 pm
A fieldmouse, hanging upside-down on the bird feeder while feasting on peanuts.   

Wow

I've only ever seen one dead - brought in by the cat, I'm sorry to say.

It's a regular at the moment. Around sunset each day he emerges from the bushes, climbs along the branch and jumps onto the feeder. Tiny little thing. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 31 January, 2009, 12:18:29 pm

3 hares, as ever tried racing them and lost.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: blackpuddinonnabike on 31 January, 2009, 05:21:27 pm
This chap in Midlothian.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3369/3240987211_108ee28feb.jpg?v=0)

We'd been for a walk in Roslin Glen and not really seen anything, but drove back the scenic route rather than straight back to town. Saw him on a post and reversed back for a closer look. He flew off, landing about 20 yards further up. This time he stayed there as I edged closer, snapping away the whole time, until there we were, directly opposite, with my window down...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: arry_b on 31 January, 2009, 06:15:50 pm
A cormorant trying to eat a live eel that was too big to get down it's throat completely.

Cormorant swallows eel apart from the last two inches of it's tail. Eel escapes by reverse wriggling vigorously out of the bird's beak. Cormorant dives and recaptures eel. Repeat as above.

This went on for five minutes until they'd floated off downstream and out of view.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 31 January, 2009, 10:01:49 pm
We saw an ickle deer near Coldharbour, Surrey.

I was driving, so didn't get a clear enough view of it to know what type it was, but it was lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 01 February, 2009, 09:34:11 pm
this fella:

(http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a19/mikes99mail/g9-1257.jpg)

swooped about 2 yards over my head as I was walking across trafalgar square at 7.30 one morning last week ;D looking for pigeons, I guess.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 01 February, 2009, 11:48:10 pm
I just watched a fox jump down from my fence and walk through the back garden.  It didn't seem to particularly care about the snow, and was nosing around under plants, presumably looking for insects.

Interestingly it didn't leave little holes from it's paws like a cat does, but pretty much dragged it's legs through the snow and left long tracks.

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/FoxSnowTrail.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 02 February, 2009, 10:15:55 am
Two roe deer from the train on the way to work, watching it pass by. They stand out more against the snow.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ian H on 02 February, 2009, 10:20:20 am
No pics I'm afraid, but we watched a family of four urban foxes scouting in the street last night. The smallest and presumably youngest seemed bemused by the snow and was sheltering under a car while the others were finding scraps. After around fifteen minutes they moved on up the road, leaving footprints the length of both pavements and in the road. They're obviously thorough in their search for food. Apart from the young one scratching a bit they looked very healthy.

I see more foxes in W London than I ever do in East Devon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 February, 2009, 10:31:15 am
I see more foxes in W London than I ever do in East Devon.

LOL, me too.  I don't ever remember see foxes as a child in Exeter.  I occasionally saw them in Cheltenham (and that was mostly in an area surrounded by barbed wire fences, so they were relatively safe from anything like hunting!).  Now I see foxes every week, quite often half a dozen on my commute home.

For some bizarre reason, even though I used to live about half a mile from stables in Cheltenham, I also see more horses around South Kensington than I ever did in Gloucestershire.  Admittedly, some of them have riders who are more heavily armed than you average horeseman (or woman). ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 02 February, 2009, 11:09:03 am
Our resident squirrel is digging thru' the snow in the back garden,no doubt looking for some of the food he & his partner spent the last few weeks burying.

Unfortunately his partner is no longer with us.I saw her in the road a few days ago,morte :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 03 February, 2009, 06:48:56 pm
In Princes Street gardens at lunchtime - a wren, two groups of long tailed tits and a treecreeper.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 03 February, 2009, 07:07:40 pm
In Princes Street gardens at lunchtime - a wren, two groups of long tailed tits and a treecreeper.

Parliament obviously in lunchtime recession
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jacomus on 04 February, 2009, 10:57:50 am
A sky rat pidgeon in D-Day zebra stripes.

It just looked like a normal very darn coloured pidgeon, until it took off revealing two white stripes per wing - like this...

(http://pro.corbis.com/images/42-18289716.jpg?size=67&uid={7f70a3ee-3d59-4341-9b9e-454cd62bd94a})
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 04 February, 2009, 04:35:08 pm
Yesterday evening I saw a flock of bats, well half a dozen anyway.
Bigger than the usual ones round here too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 08 February, 2009, 05:00:55 pm
A  muntjac in the local cemetery.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 08 February, 2009, 06:21:02 pm
I had a great day cycling on the flatlands of the moss today. I saw, in no particular order; Lapwing, Curlew, Kestrel, Fieldfares, Heron and something quite striking that was probably a wader of some sort but I'm hopeless at waders.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 08 February, 2009, 08:34:26 pm
We saw some interesting tracks in the snow on Banstead Common.  Small deer hoofprints were particularly nice to see, along the path for a long way.

We may also have seen tracks from a wolf and a yeti. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 08 February, 2009, 08:35:48 pm
A small group of tree sparrows (near Earlston, Scottish Borders)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 08 February, 2009, 10:01:05 pm
An albino deer (plus friends) in the trees at the edge of St Leonard's Forest, near Horsham.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 10 February, 2009, 01:35:43 pm
Bruce the heron , no doubt confused as to why the river is six times as wide as it was last week.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 12 February, 2009, 02:01:41 pm
A mob of bullfinches in my garden. One female has been visiting the bird feeder for a while. She arrived with a male a few days ago. Today, they have company. Several, though I've not managed to count.

The regular blue tit that eats the seeds of the buddleia next door in between visits to my feeder, the blackbird that picks up the bits I put down for it & bits dropped from the feeder, & the couple of regular goldfinches, all disappeared until the bullfinch raid was over.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 17 February, 2009, 08:06:00 pm
Saw a bat near the house today - surely a sign of spring ?  (If only cos there was still enough light left at 5.30 to see it !)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 22 February, 2009, 09:37:03 pm
8 deer (probably Roe - not sure though), crossing the road in front of me, here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=413500&Y=328500&A=Y&Z=120).  Lots of Kestrels up in the Peak District too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 22 February, 2009, 10:01:49 pm
You've been close enough to have called at Cafe Alan's for a cake stop
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 22 February, 2009, 10:05:49 pm
Two dead badgers & a dead muntjac faun.

Surprisingly (because I keep hearing they're in trouble) large numbers of sparrows in the Pang valley.

Yesterday: three red kites flying very high (Mrs. B spotted them - I had to strain to see them), two of them flying as if they were disagreeing about something. Both fancied the third? One was butting in on someone elses patch? Over east Reading, near the mouth of the Kennet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 February, 2009, 10:21:17 pm
this fella:

(http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a19/mikes99mail/g9-1257.jpg)

swooped about 2 yards over my head as I was walking across trafalgar square at 7.30 one morning last week ;D looking for pigeons, I guess.

He's got straps round his legs, hasn't he?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 22 February, 2009, 10:33:56 pm
So he has. Probably being employed to deter pigeons from settling.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 23 February, 2009, 12:11:09 pm
Lapwings, Spring must be on the way.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 23 February, 2009, 12:27:36 pm
You've been close enough to have called at Cafe Alan's for a cake stop

Was on my way to Ipstones - via Alton, Red Road, this (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=405550&Y=345214&A=Y&Z=120) and this (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=402485&Y=347713&A=Y&Z=120).  You could have come along!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 23 February, 2009, 12:34:32 pm
I know both locations well.I prefer the Alton one to the Ipstones one & I imagine you can guess why ;)
Have you used the Churney Valley Trail from Denstone to Oakamoor?
It could be usefull if you are travelling to/from the Peaks
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 23 February, 2009, 12:38:39 pm
I know both locations well.I prefer the Alton one to the Ipstones one & I imagine you can guess why ;)
Have you used the Churney Valley Trail from Denstone to Oakamoor?
It could be usefull if you are travelling to/from the Peaks

A flat run all the way from Uttoxeter to Oakamoor. :thumbsup:  I didn't know about that - thanks!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jezza on 23 February, 2009, 05:36:01 pm
An avocet, yesterday, near Covehithe.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 24 February, 2009, 05:28:36 pm
Almost every pond I passed in Richmond Park had a pair of Mandarin Ducks. The pond on Ham Common had five males and three females. Some disappointment in store there.
Lots of Pochards in Bushy Park. Again a seriously unfavourable balance from the male perspective !

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 February, 2009, 06:07:07 pm
First dolphins of the year on the commute home  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 25 February, 2009, 07:33:26 pm
Seal in the harbour scoffing a fish and getting hassled by seagulls.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 25 February, 2009, 07:39:06 pm
an owl, flying along the other side of the hedge as I sweated my way up a hill this afternoon.  It stayed with me for about 100 yards, then swooped off into the distance.  Amazingly big birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 26 February, 2009, 08:28:47 am
Mr. Fox, scrambling over a neighbour's fence at 8.15am today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 26 February, 2009, 07:45:31 pm
We live in bungalow land and one of the sad things is that all we ever seem to see is starlings, pigeons and sparrows. Until today that is. I was talking on the phone and gazing out of the office window when a Peregrine Falcon landed on the back fence, posed for a minute or so and then disappeared behind another bungalow. Wow!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 26 February, 2009, 08:43:58 pm
I saw a fox browsing among a large number of parked Audis behind a garage near Purley.  He was about to emerge from the fence when I went past, so he decided to affect an air of disinterest
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 27 February, 2009, 03:57:22 pm
Deer wallowing in a muddy patch in Bushy Park , Hampton.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/38086/9c92fac53/I2075c.jpg)

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 27 February, 2009, 04:42:54 pm
So he has. Probably being employed to deter pigeons from settling.
That reminds me, a while back I was cycling down Ludgate Hill and heard the screeching of some agitated gulls overhead.  When I looked up, there was a whopping great harris hawk being mobbed by gulls.  It was huge and a really lovely chocolate brown colour.  Hired by Ken (for, yea, verily it was a while ago) to keep pigeons under control.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 28 February, 2009, 01:17:43 pm
One of the Aberdeen red kites (http://www.rspb.org.uk/ourwork/conservation/projects/aberdeen_kites/index.asp)  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 01 March, 2009, 09:05:13 am

great view of a barn owl, folowed it for approx 200m, 10m behind it ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 02 March, 2009, 11:52:31 am
We were in the Chilterns at the weekend, so we saw red kites aplenty.  It's still a source of wonder to me that something that was so rare has flourished so well.

Superstoker was trying hard to be unimpressed in the traditional teenage style, till one swooped very low over his head.  'Wow!' he said.

Later, we saw a group of approx thirty kites all together - no idea what was going on, but it was quite a sight.

The campsite's also a good place to spot hordes of bunnies, and the odd hare (though sadly not the latter this weekend :( ).

There was a biiig swan on the Thames that dived over the weir into the breaking waves, with panache.

Also saw a load of wee piglets of some breed or other (Gloucesters?), sharing a field with a load of chickens - some fine cocks among them, some ridiculous-looking guinea fowl, four classic tractors, a pheasant, and a peacock.

Yes, a peacock!  Well, all we saw was it;s head peeping out over one of the tractors, but there it was... :o

Superstoker & I were speculating that it might just be a glove puppet... ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 02 March, 2009, 11:53:34 am
Oh yeah - and just so Oxfordshire doesn't have all the glamour of the weekend, there was a fox came really close to us as we were unloading the car back at home last night.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 02 March, 2009, 03:52:23 pm
We were in the Chilterns at the weekend, so we saw red kites aplenty.  It's still a source of wonder to me that something that was so rare has flourished so well....

Later, we saw a group of approx thirty kites all together - no idea what was going on, but it was quite a sight.
Was that around Ibstone? There used to be a woman there who fed them. She was asked not to by the RSPB & just about everyone else involved in the re-introduction (discourages them from dispersing & increasing their range), but refused to stop. Apparently, anyone who wanted stock shots of red kites from fairly close up popped down there around her usual feeding times (the kites quickly learned when to turn up for dinner) to take pictures. I don't know if she's still going, but that's the only place I've seen so many kites in one place.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 02 March, 2009, 04:47:54 pm
No, it was Watlington.  We thought maybe someone was planning a barbecue ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 02 March, 2009, 11:21:48 pm
Mrs.Wow and I counted more than 20 red kites wheeling like a load of vultures above Watlington when we were there a few years ago.

Had a brief walk on Two Tree Island (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=582985&y=185217&z=120&sv=582985,185217&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=814&ax=582985&ay=185217&lm=0) this morning, and the path had been partially blocked by a recently dug badger sett. We looked around and there were loads of holes. I've never noticed them there before, but there seemed to be lots of activity, and holes on the other side of a fence I had never previously bothered to cross. I might just have to disappear down there just before dusk next month and see if I can get any photos.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 03 March, 2009, 02:40:16 pm

Lots of Pochards in Bushy Park. Again a seriously unfavourable balance from the male perspective !

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)


..... and here is a picture of one of the little beauties

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/38726/a60c94cde/IMG_2063c.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 03 March, 2009, 02:46:33 pm
That's a red-crested pochard, different again from a pochard. Much less common, and usually either an escapee or in a collection.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 March, 2009, 05:32:28 pm
(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/276-2/DSC_0009_1.jpg)

It is indeed.

(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/280-1/DSC_0011_1.jpg)

That's the female.

I took those photos about 4 years ago at Hanningfield Reservoir. This pair had a load of ducklings and when I went back a week later, another male had joined them and all three adults seemed to be operating a happy ménage à trois as they looked after the babies.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 03 March, 2009, 05:34:21 pm
I didn't think they bred (as "properly" wild birds) closer than Germany.  One lives, one learns ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 March, 2009, 05:35:13 pm
They probably didn't read the book which told you that... ;)

(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/281-2/DSC_0034_1.jpg)

These are the ducklings with mum in the foreground.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: ludwig on 03 March, 2009, 05:57:21 pm
Red kites. Lots of em. One soared just above me while i cycled along
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 March, 2009, 05:17:53 pm
4 roe deer in a field south of the railway between Reading & Theale.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 04 March, 2009, 05:59:44 pm
A small bird of prey (kestral?) making an attempt to catch a pigeon on the wing in the office car park this lunchtime and a larger BoP circling over Wokingham station (didn't appeat to have the forked tail of a kite) half an hour later.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 04 March, 2009, 10:28:56 pm
More likely to be a sparrow hawk after a pigeon, I'd have thought.

A sign of spring in Priory Park today: frogspawn! :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 06 March, 2009, 10:38:35 pm
A seething mass of worms, when I moved my compost bin. Winter and a lack of fresh vegetation have turned it from hot to cold, ideal for worms.

The well-rotted stuff at the bottom was turned out onto the garden, complete with worms, much to the delight of a blackbird.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 07 March, 2009, 12:52:58 am
A duck with five ducklings paddling away behind her on the river near Southwark Bridge. The tide must be a bit of a puzzle to them
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 March, 2009, 06:55:52 pm
In Priory Park this morning:-

a sparrow hawk terrorising pigeons
an angler catching a large leather carp (about 15lb I'd say)
two little egrets
and two ladies dressed in latex and rubber, wallowing in the mud :o
(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 11 March, 2009, 10:26:46 am
Dirty filth! ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 11 March, 2009, 10:43:26 am
In Priory Park this morning:-

a sparrow hawk terrorising pigeons
an angler catching a large leather carp (about 15lb I'd say)
two little egrets
and two ladies dressed in latex and rubber, wallowing in the mud :o


I thought Charlotte and Liz had gone home?   ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 11 March, 2009, 10:51:12 am
At the weekend, Butterfly & I lay in our tent listening to some absolutely enchanting birdsong, though I have to confess neither of us knows enough about birdsong to identify what it was :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 11 March, 2009, 12:01:49 pm
A buzzard and two magpies by the side of the road, disputing the ownership of a rabbit. The buzzard seemed to be winning as I rode by.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 11 March, 2009, 04:05:59 pm
I had a pair of Egyptian Geese do what pedestrians often do , see me then saunter majestically across the road in front of me anyway.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/39439/72b96df48/1Tccropthumb.jpg)

 Snakehips Bikes  (http://www.yudu.com/item/details/28055/Snakehips--Bikes-)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 11 March, 2009, 04:48:48 pm
There is a heron at Carshalton Ponds.  Often, he's stood on a rock.  Today, he was stood still, up to his arse in the water, looking like a sawn-off heron.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 16 March, 2009, 01:23:17 pm
The world seemed to be alive with birdlife early this morning. I counted at least fifteen species seen or heard during my short ride and at one point there were four or five rooks flying above me all with twigs in their beaks. Busy time for bids I guess.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 16 March, 2009, 01:28:36 pm
I heard birds on my way to the start of the Wiltshire White Horses.

A couple of woodpeckers, an owl and some crows. Also lots of those tweety ones.

On the home run back to the finish I saw a large deer, standing motionless by the roadside, looking at me as intently as I was looking at it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 16 March, 2009, 03:24:25 pm
Last night, we (Butterfly, Superstoker & myself) stood in Battersea Park, just inside the Rosary Gate, about thirty metres from the Chelsea Bridge traffic, and close to several groups of people making their own racket.

Yet, as the light dimmed towards dusk, we heard a sweet combination of birdsong.  I couldn't identify any of it, but it was a lovely moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 16 March, 2009, 04:51:05 pm
The curlews are back which is great a real sign of better weather and their call is just wonderful ,sends shivers down my spine.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 16 March, 2009, 04:52:59 pm
At 4.25 p.m. last Friday Mrs. Wow and I watched a barn owl from quite close quarters as we pootled through Barling.

Yesterday afternoon I heard a chiff-chaff, the first summer visitor of the summer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Andrij on 16 March, 2009, 06:48:48 pm
This morning, near Coram Fields (London) a pigeon crossing the road — using a zebra crossing!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zipperhead on 16 March, 2009, 11:29:11 pm
I took a slight detour on the way home as it was such a lovely evening and saw bats down by the river in Wandsworth Park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 16 March, 2009, 11:57:25 pm
Bats flitting up and down our lane. First ones I have seen this year. Nice to have them back again.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 18 March, 2009, 11:13:44 am
Seen yesterday morning, between Ufton Nervet & Beenham - a buzzard. So used to seeing kites that I assumed it was one at first, even though they're not yet common that far SW (but give them time ... ), but then I saw the tail.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Really Ancien on 19 March, 2009, 06:38:40 pm
Three Buzzards, wheeling, mewing and displaying, and several very annoyed Crows.

Damon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 19 March, 2009, 07:57:31 pm
Four deer crossing a field somewhere near Swindon
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 19 March, 2009, 11:30:11 pm
The dolphins were putting on a superb display this evening  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 21 March, 2009, 09:32:05 am


A weasal, and unfortunately the first hedgehog of the year (but flat :'()
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jimbob on 21 March, 2009, 10:09:01 pm
A hare,

not especially mad though

 :) 

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 22 March, 2009, 07:41:59 pm
Three Buzzards, wheeling, mewing and displaying, and several very annoyed Crows.

Damon.
Rather oddly - snap. Near Aldermaston, this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 March, 2009, 08:30:32 pm
The first batch of Priory Park frogspawn seems to be well dead and rotting. There's a second batch, appeared about last Thursday, which looks OK at the moment. Fingers crossed.

No ducklings yet. Won't be long now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 22 March, 2009, 08:39:43 pm
Chiffchaffs galore!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 22 March, 2009, 09:42:22 pm
Gamboling lambs.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 23 March, 2009, 10:43:06 am
While I was eating breakfast, i was somewhat surprised to see a lame fox (not a Lane-Fox - that's an altogether more irritating beast, and I might approve of hunting them ) appear from by our side gate, and trot diagonally across the lawn to the tree.

Somewhat unusually, on Friday, we had a cat seemingly stuck up the tree all the day, though not yowling.  It can't have been difficult ot get down, but it had been sat there hours.

On the botanical side,  this weekend we saw oceans of daffodils, some snowdrops still flowering, a few magnolias on the verge of bursting into flower.  And primroses smiling from the verges. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 23 March, 2009, 03:51:13 pm
Lots of birds in Sussex, too.  You forget how much birdsong there can be when you've lived in a city for a while.  Lovely. 

Most of the birds were nothing very special, but nice to see.  Tits, of course, and a starling hanging on a feeder :o  But also a sweet little wren, a cheeky robin (was that what crapped on out tent?), and, on sunday morning, a smallish greenish bird hopping round just next to the tent, only visible under the edge of the flysheet.  Cool.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 23 March, 2009, 10:46:29 pm
A barn owl flew over as we were driving home last night in deepest, darkest Fife.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jezza on 26 March, 2009, 10:38:23 pm
Three wood mice on the feeder.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 27 March, 2009, 09:50:45 am
I was so convinced by the flightpath of one bird this morning, that it was the first Swallow, that I had to get out the studio and trot down the road after it. Mind you, Swallows don't rest in trees, and 'this one' did.

It was a Chaffinch I think, but a beautiful song it had.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 27 March, 2009, 10:00:46 am
A stoat on the way back from dropping off the car for an MOT. It was running around like a nutter in the road and jumping about.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 March, 2009, 10:59:30 pm
Three hares.
Marsh harrier.
Barn owl.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 30 March, 2009, 01:13:42 am
Three buzzards, apparently sharing a thermal, with no sign or sound of discord. Unusually, the corvids weren't trying to chase them away.

Heard a chiffchaff - my first this year while cycling. During Friday's tree-planting excercise, I had concluded that the migrants have arrived in Warwickshire.

And botanically : -

The lesser celandines are nearing their best. We rode past some of my favourite patches and they were carpeted with flowers. It seems to be as good a year for them as it has been for the snowdrops.

Lots of wood anemones on the verges. Again it seems a very good year - I don't recall seeing carpets of them on the roadside before.

Violets in a nice little clump - 'stop & sniff' test indicated dog violets of some sort.

Wild daffodils flowering, though not at their peak yet, unlike the more common cultivated varieties which are truly spectacular around here at present.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 31 March, 2009, 07:24:48 pm
Yesterday afternoon, about 1.45: common lizard! It wriggled across my path just as i was about to cross the River Roach at Stambridge Mills.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 03 April, 2009, 07:32:54 pm
The best view of a stoat I have ever had. He was making his way across the road at quite a leisurely pace and I got a good view of his tell tale black tipped tail.

We also heard a skylark today, if ever a sound summed up summer. Hang on, it's only April. Ah well, it felt like summer in the sunshine.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 04 April, 2009, 11:57:42 pm
A swallow!  :thumbsup: At Sacombe Green on today's WARTY.

I checked the Southend RSPB website and the first report of a swallow on there was last Wednesday, 25th March. This is the earliest swallow I've seen for years, beating by 2 days the swallow Mrs. Wow and I saw on the first day of our LEJOG.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 05 April, 2009, 07:12:41 am
A swallow!  :thumbsup: At Secombe Green on today's WARTY.

I checked the Southend RSPB website and the first report of a swallow on there was last Wednesday, 25th March. This is the earliest swallow I've seen for years, beating by 2 days the swallow Mrs. Wow and I saw on the first day of our LEJOG.

You've made my day WB. Only on Friday as we cycled in what was almost summer like conditions I mentioned to Gill that it was time to start keeping an eye out for the first swallows. It will probably take them a few more days to come this far north but I will be scanning the skies today for that joyful bird.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 05 April, 2009, 08:25:05 pm
Bluebells! Only a few, on a south-facing bank south of the M4, but a harbinger of the vast swathes of blue soon to appear just north of here.

A robin sat on a tree above us and sang as we waited for our lunch.

I love this time of year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 05 April, 2009, 08:27:25 pm
More bluebells here, well near the top of Reigate Hill in a bank of trees by the road.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 05 April, 2009, 11:47:34 pm
First chiffchaff of the year on Thursday morning - on the Roseburn Path just by the Water of Leith.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 06 April, 2009, 10:29:52 pm
... and an early willow warbler in the (very urban) garden this afternoon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 07 April, 2009, 01:51:39 pm
The first batch of Priory Park frogspawn seems to be well dead and rotting. There's a second batch, appeared about last Thursday, which looks OK at the moment. Fingers crossed.

No ducklings yet. Won't be long now.

Still no ducklings, but there are some tadpoles! :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 07 April, 2009, 03:01:46 pm
The first batch of Priory Park frogspawn seems to be well dead and rotting. There's a second batch, appeared about last Thursday, which looks OK at the moment. Fingers crossed.

No ducklings yet. Won't be long now.

Ducklins doesn't come from frogspawn </extent of wildlife knowledge>
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 07 April, 2009, 06:31:25 pm
I'm just watching a tree creeper on our silver birch.  Odd jerky movements, like a mouse.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Marco Stefano on 08 April, 2009, 08:58:33 pm
Crossing the River Little Ouse at, er, Little Ouse in the morning last week, I saw a dull small thing flying low along the river coming from the east. Played poohsticks with it as it zoomed underneath the bridge, and transformed into an electric blue flash. Wonderful.

On the way home the same day, it came back the other way! Couldn't believe it. I seem to see it most days now. A lovely halfway stop; really perks one up. If no kingfisher, then woodpeckers and barn owls seem to sub in.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 09 April, 2009, 03:59:13 pm
The first batch of Priory Park frogspawn seems to be well dead and rotting. There's a second batch, appeared about last Thursday, which looks OK at the moment. Fingers crossed.

No ducklings yet. Won't be long now.

Ducklins doesn't come from frogspawn </extent of wildlife knowledge>

Well they've come from somewhere. 9 on the lake today following their mum. There's tadpoles too, but in a different stretch of water.

I also spent a very interesting 10 minutes watching large carp eating bread. The carp in Priory Park lake go up to about 30lb - the biggest I've seen was a 27lber that the anglers call "the pig".

The water is very turbid with a blue-green algal bloom so it's hard to see the fish below the surface until they come up for the bread. Then, without warning, there's a loud "slurp"and the bread disappears. Once, the upper half of a carp's head appeared above the water as it grabbed a piece of crust. I'd say it was at least 4" from snout to the start of the fish's back so that fish was a good "double figure"one. On another occasion, I saw the side of a fish shine gold just beneath the surface, and I reckon that was a good 20lb plus. It looked like a side of beef.

As a pointer, the guy who caught this one told me it weighed 13lb.

(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/153-2/DSC00155.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 11 April, 2009, 06:26:22 pm
Two swans having sex in the Thames. Looked as if he was drowning her, but there was a touching display of neck-rubbing when they'd finished, so presumably she had no complaints. Spent a long time straightening out her feathers, though: much longer than him.

Hordes of grebes, in both the Thames & Kennet. They seem to be getting more common.

Rather tame blackbirds in my garden, hunting worms within a few feet of me or Mrs B. The goldfinches are also being brave, feeding when one of us is quite close. The blue tits are shyer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 11 April, 2009, 07:11:15 pm
The water is very turbid with a blue-green algal bloom so it's hard to see the fish below the surface until they come up for the bread. Then, without warning, there's a loud "slurp"and the bread disappears. Once, the upper half of a carp's head appeared above the water as it grabbed a piece of crust. I'd say it was at least 4" from snout to the start of the fish's back so that fish was a good "double figure"one. On another occasion, I saw the side of a fish shine gold just beneath the surface, and I reckon that was a good 20lb plus. It looked like a side of beef.

If you go to a carp lake in calm summer weather at dusk, you can see them swimming about with their dorsal fins out of the water, presumably catching flies and pond skaters.   They're very wily fish and notoriously hard to catch; I heard of a guy who was determined to catch one of the big carp out of a lake, so he went out in a boat and carefully laid a field of "boilies" (boiled bait balls) on the lake bottom with one right  in the middle that was actually attached to his line.

He waited all night.  Nothing happened.

He rowed out again in the morning and every boilie had gone except the one with the hook in it.  Carp have been seen to suck bait in and blow it out repeatedly to see if it has a line attached.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 11 April, 2009, 09:39:39 pm
Swallows

Several of them so it is now officially summer. I know they have been swanning around down south for a while now but these were Northern Swallows. With flat caps and whippets and everything.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 13 April, 2009, 09:35:57 pm
A bird I didn't recognise, perched in a tree looking longingly at my bird feeder, but put off, I think, by there being too many people around. Maybe goldfinch sized, but slimmer, with a slimmer beak, & a small crest. Sort of greenish-grey, bands on wings. Any ideas.

Blackbirds (male & female) & a blue tit which weren't put off at all. Looked up from fixing together my new garden tool store to catch the eye of a blackbird with a mouthful of something wriggly, only a few feet away. I think he's a regular, & used to me - and obviously not put off by drilling & hammering. The female & tit both popped by for a feed while I was sitting reading in the sun, only slightly further away.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zipperhead on 13 April, 2009, 11:36:06 pm
A great big one eyed rat in the City today (a few yards from where Mr. Tomlinson and the Police tangled last week).

I stood a couple of feet away from it and watched and it ignored me completely. It couldn't care less about a human.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 13 April, 2009, 11:59:23 pm
one eyed rat in the City

I'm not familiar with that species, Zipperhead. Any pics?  :P
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 14 April, 2009, 01:57:36 pm
Reed Bunting (male). Back garden.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 14 April, 2009, 02:03:39 pm
A bird I didn't recognise, perched in a tree looking longingly at my bird feeder, but put off, I think, by there being too many people around. Maybe goldfinch sized, but slimmer, with a slimmer beak, & a small crest. Sort of greenish-grey, bands on wings. Any ideas.


Siskin ?

http://www.wildliferanger.co.uk/users/www.wildliferanger.co.uk/upload/Garden%20IX%20Hen%20Siskin%20002.JPG


They seem to be getting more common.  We have loads of them here; I hadn't seen one close up until this year
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 14 April, 2009, 09:00:46 pm
A bird I didn't recognise, perched in a tree looking longingly at my bird feeder, but put off, I think, by there being too many people around. Maybe goldfinch sized, but slimmer, with a slimmer beak, & a small crest. Sort of greenish-grey, bands on wings. Any ideas.


Siskin ?

http://www.wildliferanger.co.uk/users/www.wildliferanger.co.uk/upload/Garden%20IX%20Hen%20Siskin%20002.JPG

They seem to be getting more common.  We have loads of them here; I hadn't seen one close up until this year.
But the crest . . . it was quite distinct.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 14 April, 2009, 09:08:21 pm
A lot of little birds pop a crest up when they're excited...or trying to pull.

Bluetits, even

greenish-grey: my first thought was siskin.  Very distinctive colour
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 14 April, 2009, 09:20:58 pm
I've just looked through some of the pictures on Flickr, & if it can pop up a crest, it could be a female. The female at RSPB Fairburn Ings (two pics) looks rather similar, as do some  of the other lighter-coloured ones - mostly labelled female. It didn't look like any of the males.

Flickr: Search (http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=Carduelis+spinus)
Siskin, Carduelis spinus, Female at RSPB Fairburn Ings on Flickr - Photo Sharing! (http://www.flickr.com/photos/stevegreaves/3300711197/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 14 April, 2009, 09:49:30 pm
The ones we have - even the males  - are not anything like as yellow as the pics.  They're really more greeny-grey-dull

Might try to get a pic tomorrow
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 15 April, 2009, 09:26:28 am
Woodpecker. Fairly small, black and white with a scarlet butt.
I don't think that I have ever seen a woodpecker before but I could tell it was a woodpecker because it was banging its beak on a tree.
Seen at Heath Chapel up on Brown Clee.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 15 April, 2009, 10:21:55 am
Probably a Greater Spotted

British Garden Birds - Great Spotted Woodpecker (http://www.garden-birds.co.uk/birds/great_spotted_woodpecker.htm)

If it didn't have a red bit on its head, it was an adult female

We get them on the peanut feeders.  At the former Volio Towers one Went Bad and tried to break into the blue tit nest boxes.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 15 April, 2009, 10:44:30 am
The red knickers are a bit of a giveaway there.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 15 April, 2009, 11:13:39 am
Female Greater Spotted it was; no red fancy on the head but definitely red knickers.
Cheers
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 17 April, 2009, 12:56:00 am
Over the last 2 days...
A buzzard mobbed by a couple of ravens. I though they were crows until they gave voice. Do buzzards & ravens compete for food?

First Willow Warbler I've seen/heard this year.

Quite a lot of goldfinches - they seem to be more common that a few years ago.

A kestrel, perched on the same pole on Weds & Thurs - on the latter occasion he flew off with something in his talons.

A hen blackbird bathing in a wet ditch. It was in front of a house where the grass had been cut very recently. Lots of the cuttings were floating on the water surface, and the bird's activity had created a ring of clear water, surrounded by the grass.

A total absence of yellowhammers singing or perching on the roadside hedges. Has anyone else had shortages of these (previously common) birds?

And botanically, a very rich display of wild flowers : -
Primrose
Cowslip
Wood Anemone
Lesser Celandine
Bluebell
Greater Stitchwort
Sweet Violet
Dog violet (of some sort)
White deadnettle
Red deadnettle
Yellow Archangel
Bugle
Ground Ivy
Daisy
Dandlelion
Coltsfoot
Red Campion - distinctly early
Garlic Mustard
Hairy bittercress (I think)
Forget-me-not
Wild Arum
A white umbellifer that I haven't idetified.
A blue flower, which I think is Alkanet, but it has become very common, so might be a garden escape.
Daffodils - definitely garden escape
Periwinkle - probably garden escape
Honesty - definitely garden escape

It's definitely a good spring.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 17 April, 2009, 09:50:08 am
I've noticed that the buzzards I see are often accompanied by a crow that seems to usher them away by flying with them and forcing changes in the buzzard's path. Not mobbing, but a more subtle interference like a guiding of the buzzard.
Is that bird behaviour or am imagining it?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 April, 2009, 10:37:36 am
The crows etc  here def.  move the buzzards along.  If the buzzards can't be persuaded nicely then the crows play rough.

At Former Volio Towers we had kites over the garden quite often, and the corvids used to mob them mercilessly.  The kites mostly ignored them :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 April, 2009, 10:39:15 am

Quite a lot of goldfinches - they seem to be more common that a few years ago.

Yes, there seem to be loads about

Quote
It's definitely a good spring.

There do seem to be an awful lot of very good shows of hedgerow flowers this year.  The primroses are as amazing as I've ever seen. 

Spring has sprung (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=16976.msg309227#msg309227)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 17 April, 2009, 12:38:58 pm
Saturday evening, after the Cambrian 200: a barn owl clutching dinner in its claws, flying along in front of me, just below the tree canopy.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 April, 2009, 04:49:36 pm
A buzzard mobbed by a couple of ravens.

Which reminds me: a buzzard getting mobbed by a lapwing on Sunday. Lapwings seem willing to have a go at anything.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 17 April, 2009, 04:55:30 pm
By a roundabout route (pleasing wingshapes, as it happens), that reminds me that I saw a heron flying directly overhead as I cycled across Mitcham Common to work yesterday, and I noticed how, at the end of each long, lazy stroke, as if the bird were rowing through the air, the wing narrows to a sleek pointed shape.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 17 April, 2009, 11:16:45 pm

Quite a lot of goldfinches - they seem to be more common that a few years ago.

Yes, there seem to be loads about

Quote
It's definitely a good spring.

There do seem to be an awful lot of very good shows of hedgerow flowers this year.  The primroses are as amazing as I've ever seen. 

Spring has sprung (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=16976.msg309227#msg309227)
Ta for that link - I'd missed the thread, since it's a part of the forum that I don't normally frequent.
Agree totally about the primroses - they're just reaching their best around here and there aren't usually a lot about in the Warwickshire verges.
Title: Kestrel sex
Post by: border-rider on 18 April, 2009, 07:24:45 pm
There's been a male kestrel hunting around our drive the last few months

Today we were watching him while we were coming home, and he flew over the pond and landed on another kestrel sitting on a branch.  It was very quick.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 19 April, 2009, 10:46:23 am
Saw a long eared owl the other day sat on a hedge. Not such an uncommon bird I know but the first one I have seem. We get plenty of barn owls and little owls and I hear tawny owls all the time but that's my first vulcan owl.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 19 April, 2009, 03:52:35 pm

Yesterday hares boxing just south of wilburton, and today a buzzard by Coveny
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 19 April, 2009, 10:52:23 pm
Scads of herons at Bough Beech. A grey wagtail last weekend at Hathersage. For a grey bird, it isn't half yellow.  Three wallabies down the FNRTTC lane in Horley yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 20 April, 2009, 09:44:49 pm
An evening jaunt to one of my favourite places, Two Tree Island, to see if there were any cuckoos about.

There was an almighty ruckus amongst some oystercatchers, which was quite amusing. There were quite a lot of the other usual waders - loads of avocets, sitting on eggs now by the look of them.

We saw an owl, which I assumed to be a short-eared. Then we met a few ornitho-types with binoculars and stuff and had a chat with one of them.

The owl, apparently is a long eared. I'd never seen one before. Then a nightingale started to sing and we listened to it for quite some time. I was able to phone three people up and they could hear it too. A wonderful, romantic, evocative sound. I'll have to listen to some Beethoven in a minute. It's the first nightingale I've heard since Annie and I rode the tandem across Ditchling Common on the May FNRttC last year.

Then, as we walked towards the eastern end of the island, a pair of owls settled in a clump of stunted oaks to our left. They were so close we could hear their wing-beats (owls are amongst the most silent of fliers, for obvious reasons) and their mewing. I reckon they've got a nest in there.

Didn't hear any cuckoos, but apparently one was seen there on Saturday and another ornitho-type we chatted to said he'd heard one today at Wakering Stairs, where Mrs. Wow and I went yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 20 April, 2009, 09:53:48 pm
Saw a stoat up a Norfolk lane on Saturday. It came right up close until it heard my brake squeak, sat bolt upright and then shot down a hole in the bank. Lovely sight and only the third I have ever seen. I've always been on a bike when I've seen one. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 21 April, 2009, 11:37:26 am
A stoat for me too - in the garden :)

It was just bouncing across the grass by the oil tank when I looked out
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 21 April, 2009, 01:32:56 pm
A stoat for me too - in the garden :)

It was just bouncing across the grass by the oil tank when I looked out

All the stoats in Wolverhampton are waving guns and dealing drugs, or is it scrotes?  :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 April, 2009, 02:00:42 pm
A mallard in Priory Park has no fewer than 17 (may have been more) very young ducklings following her about. I've never seen so many in a brood. Wiki reckons that 13 is usually the upper limit of eggs in a clutch. I wonder whether they could be foster-ducklings from another brood, but they are all a very similar size.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 21 April, 2009, 09:02:45 pm
Some other duck making like a cuckoo?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 22 April, 2009, 10:21:08 am
A mallard in Priory Park has no fewer than 17 (may have been more) very young ducklings following her about. I've never seen so many in a brood. Wiki reckons that 13 is usually the upper limit of eggs in a clutch. I wonder whether they could be foster-ducklings from another brood, but they are all a very similar size.


[Right Wing Hat ON]

Probably has a council nest and gets a shed load in bread benefits...

[/Right Wing Hat OFF]
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 22 April, 2009, 07:36:29 pm

[/Right Wing Hat OFF]


It's removable?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 23 April, 2009, 12:48:14 am
I saw a hare on Tuesday  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 23 April, 2009, 08:01:19 am
 A very small and _very_ stupid young rabbit, about 6" off my front wheel on the way in today.  It was very nearly (a very small) rabbit pie.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 23 April, 2009, 11:07:00 pm
Today (and for much of this week) I have had my first sighting of the Baby Rabbits of Spring in Richmond Park (a sight that usually shortly precedes the first sighting of a Baby Rabbit of Spring in Richmond Park Being Pecked To Death By Crows).

As well as the tiny little rabbits (which it must be admitted are massively cute) there are the occasional bigger adult rabbit among the small ones - I'm guessing that they are the Richmond Park Owsla policing evening Silflay.

*peruses bookshelves in search of Watership Down*
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 23 April, 2009, 11:57:55 pm
A stoat for me too - in the garden :)

It was just bouncing across the grass by the oil tank when I looked out

Are you sure it was a stoat and not a weasel?

A weasel is normally weaselly recognised, but a stoat is stoatally different..
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 24 April, 2009, 02:16:58 pm
We seem to have acquired a racing pigeon

I saw a trailerload parked a few miles away on Tuesday, ready to be released, and when i got home there was a fine chap with one blue, one green leg ring boggling at me at eating bird food.  He seems very tame and I suspect I could probably catch him.

I may call him Speckled Jim :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 24 April, 2009, 02:58:47 pm
*peruses bookshelves in search of Watership Down*
You won't find it there, it's a few miles south of Newbury.  ;D

Oh yeah - be careful heading south over it. Unless they've removed it, there's a gate across the road at the aptly named Warren Farm, & it's sometimes shut. Two peopl I know had a near miss there when a brake cable broke on their tandem. Luckily the gate was open that day.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 24 April, 2009, 08:15:55 pm
A swallow on a telegraph wire. Just need a second for it to be summer. Seen during a very pleasant day's walking in Sussex woodland enjoying the bluebells.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 25 April, 2009, 11:02:48 pm
Swallows in Angus & Perthshire - summer must've arrived  :thumbsup:

Plus:

Yellowhammers
Bullfinch
Ubiquitous buzzards
Brown hare
Mountain hare
Deer
Red squirrel (first one this year)  :thumbsup:
Loadsa lambs

Used Mrs P's bat detector successfully for the first time - got some chirping at 55khz.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 April, 2009, 11:35:00 pm
Swallows
House martins
long-tailed tit
greenfinches
chaffinches
heard a chiffchaff & willow warbler
heard & saw a cuckoo
kestrel

the duck in Priory Park still has 17 ducklings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 26 April, 2009, 01:45:43 pm


Seven buzzards in a thermal by Newton Cambs
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zoidburg on 26 April, 2009, 06:20:22 pm
We seem to have acquired a racing pigeon

I saw a trailerload parked a few miles away on Tuesday, ready to be released, and when i got home there was a fine chap with one blue, one green leg ring boggling at me at eating bird food.  He seems very tame and I suspect I could probably catch him.

I may call him Speckled Jim :)
Yes!

That's him there! there!

The Flanders Pigeon Murderer!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 26 April, 2009, 08:55:06 pm
More red sqrls (same one as yesterday, plus one at my brother's house)
Great spotted wooderypeckery
Stoat
Black Grouse!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clifftaylor on 26 April, 2009, 09:41:15 pm
Mr Squashy, the hedgehog
Mr Flat, the pigeon
Mr Splat, the fox
Mr Puffy, the about-to-explode badger in the gutter
 :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 26 April, 2009, 10:04:30 pm
Mr Squashy, the hedgehog
Mr Flat, the pigeon
Mr Splat, the fox
Mr Puffy, the about-to-explode badger in the gutter
 :-[


Ah, well if we are doing dead I've seen a little deer in the verge. Small, bigger than fox but smaller than alsatian, very reddish and no spots.
it was a fresh kill - bright red blood from the mouth - but I don't eat meat anymore so I left it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 26 April, 2009, 11:02:40 pm
Two blue tits, feeding from my bird feeder while I was gardening not three feet away. Damn, they're getting tame! There's a pair of blackbirds who come almost as close. They catch my eye, then carry on.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 27 April, 2009, 10:04:35 pm

Used Mrs P's bat detector successfully for the first time - got some chirping at 55khz.

Cool!  Soprano pipistrelle, presumably??
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 27 April, 2009, 10:09:03 pm
Fox living in our garden! :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 27 April, 2009, 10:12:52 pm
A parakeet which flew over my head as I was riding up Kennington Road this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 April, 2009, 02:41:32 pm
Usual assorted stuff in Priory Park. Saw a Goldcrest zoom from one tree to another and spent quite some time watching and listening to a wren. It wasn't the usual high-decibel tirade from a prominent perch, but a low-key warble from a bank of brambles and nettles, and for a few minutes I was looking for some sort of warbler, until I saw it. I wondered whether a female tending young might communicate with them in this way?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 28 April, 2009, 08:08:46 pm
Several days of birding in Purbeck and Hampshire.
Whimbrels
Bar and black tailed godwits
Little Egrets
Ruff
Common tern
Cuckoo
Blackcap
Willow tits
Garden warblers
Willow warblers
Chiffchaffs
Wood warbler
Stonechat
Tawny and little owls
Gadwall
Spotted redshank
Meadow pipit
Skylark
Swallow

Common lizard at Arne
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 28 April, 2009, 08:40:43 pm
A pair of buzzards over Chessington
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 29 April, 2009, 07:02:19 pm
Goslings! 9 fat fluffy yellow things, on the old mill stream beside Caversham weir, while I was en route to Waitrose to buy Japanese soy sauce. Also lots of ducklings, a set of brand new little fluff balls closely following mum, & some slightly bigger ones being a little more independent. And a black swan.

Just now, a rather cheeky great tit having a four course dinner in my garden. Seeds from the feeder, a nibble of peanut, something from the blackcurrant bush, then fat sprinkles from the bird table. Greedy little bugger. All while I stood watching. As the next door neighbour said, all he was lacking was a little wine.

I wonder what he likes in the blackcurrant bush? Flowers? Aphids? I should look & see if there are any. I've seen a few other birds rummaging around in it, including a blue tit.

Ah. Buds are listed as part of their diet. The bush has both flowers & buds on it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 29 April, 2009, 09:34:12 pm
Baby Moorhens on a nest on Waddon Pond :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 April, 2009, 09:45:37 pm
Baby Moorhens on a nest on Waddon Pond :D

I love baby moorhens :)

Little balls of fluff on long, long spindly legs

We had 'em on the pond last year, and as teenagers they came to scoff the bird food
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 29 April, 2009, 09:49:17 pm
Implausible birds
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 30 April, 2009, 08:43:49 am
Parakeets!

Nothing unusual in this, since I go through Richmond Park most mornings - I was early today though and saw lots and lots of them feeding on the ground and therefore got a really close look at them as they flew away.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 30 April, 2009, 08:56:06 am
I had to travel up north (Australia) yesterday and saw some aptly named Pretty Faced Wallabies feeding on the road verge near the airport.

The locals also swore that the creek had crocodiles but I didn't see any!

Several eagles though (not in the creek - had to look up for them)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: docsquid on 30 April, 2009, 03:30:11 pm
Couple of days ago, but there are now TWO cuckoos at our woods.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 30 April, 2009, 03:59:12 pm
Still haven't heard a cuckoo this year - and the only one I've seen was eaten this morning by a FatCat in Steve bell's cartoon ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 30 April, 2009, 04:01:57 pm
Seeing the fox at the bottom of the garden regularly now.  S/he looks towards the house every time s/he goes alongside the fence at the end.  It's a bit overgrown at the end, but the fox needs to climb up to leave the garden, so we get a good look.  It's kinda nice having a fox in your compost heap (well, the remains of the previous resident's grass-clippings pile, really)* - much better than mice or rats.


* I don't keep chickens
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 30 April, 2009, 10:45:51 pm
There's a nesting box in the garden backing on to mine, & it now has residents. Tits - didn't see whether Great or Blue, & both have been visiting a lot recently. Have to keep an eye on it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 April, 2009, 11:33:36 pm
I've never seen so many ducklings as are currently swimming around the lakes at Priory Park.

I watched a pair of mistle thrushes mobbing a sparrowhawk above my lunchtime school today and whilst cycling home from my tai chi class this evening a particularly mangy-looking fox came hurtling out of the Southend Hospital grounds pretty close to my front wheel.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 30 April, 2009, 11:36:56 pm
........... a particularly mangy-looking fox came hurtling out of the Southend Hospital grounds pretty close to my front wheel.

Do you think he caught the mange in the hospital? i've heard that the NHS has become a good place to catch an illness :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 April, 2009, 11:39:15 pm
........... a particularly mangy-looking fox came hurtling out of the Southend Hospital grounds pretty close to my front wheel.

Do you think he caught the mange in the hospital? i've heard that the NHS has become a good place to catch an illness :)

Perhaps it was MRSA.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 30 April, 2009, 11:42:05 pm
........... a particularly mangy-looking fox came hurtling out of the Southend Hospital grounds pretty close to my front wheel.

Do you think he caught the mange in the hospital? i've heard that the NHS has become a good place to catch an illness :)

Perhaps it was MRSA.

That's the problem isn't it? When they hurtle it is difficult to diagnose accurately.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 02 May, 2009, 08:09:04 pm
I had to travel up north (Australia) yesterday and saw some aptly named Pretty Faced Wallabies feeding on the road verge near the airport.

The locals also swore that the creek had crocodiles but I didn't see any!

Several eagles though (not in the creek - had to look up for them)

When I was in Cairns in 2007 I saw a lot of Agile Wallabies. No Bloody Clumsy ones, though.......
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 03 May, 2009, 03:50:19 pm
Seen: nothing unusual.
Heard: lots of woodpeckers. The woods of South Oxfordshire are ringing with the sound of beak on tree.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 03 May, 2009, 05:40:46 pm
A couple of what I think were Goldfinches in the back garden, if I've found the right birds from the RSPBs website.

They were very small birds, with a very noticeable red patch on their heads.  They were quite low down, on plants, very near the ground.  Luckily Talisker wasn't around, or was snoozing (as he is now), or they would have supplemented his diet.

I grabbed my camera, but they'd gone by then.  I'm watching out for them, they were very attractive looking birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 May, 2009, 05:44:28 pm
Almost certainly goldfinches, and not that uncommon. We saw quite a few yesterday. Gorgeous little birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 03 May, 2009, 08:41:00 pm
We get them in the garden quite often, but irregularly: lots for a while, then they disappear for a while, unlike the tits & blackbirds, which turn up every day. Mrs B got quite excited the first time she saw them. I think she didn't realise there were such colourful birds in Britain.

We had a couple of linnets grubbing around today. I've been wondering what I could do to encourage them. They seemed to like the blackcurrant bush.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 05 May, 2009, 05:51:16 pm
As I was going round Richmond Park a quartet of Egyptian geese landed on the grass by the road just ahead of me. It's unusual to see them flying. Two then started fighting , and they looked like vultures squabbling over a carcase.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 06 May, 2009, 12:37:14 pm
On Monday we saw a red kite mooching for road kill on the road between Munlochy and Avoch. Then there were dolphins at Chanonry Point.

In Glen Coe at the weekend we think we saw a treecreeper.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 06 May, 2009, 01:17:01 pm

In Glen Coe at the weekend we think we saw a treecreeper.
And lots of bats
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: robbo6 on 06 May, 2009, 09:05:48 pm
This chap has been watching me nearly all day:
(http://i8.photobucket.com/albums/a38/StevenROBSON/PICT0108.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 06 May, 2009, 10:56:39 pm
Looks a bit too reddish to qualify for the cajun treatment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 07 May, 2009, 12:58:41 pm
When I was in Cairns in 2007 I saw a lot of Agile Wallabies. No Bloody Clumsy ones, though.......

A mate of mine encountered a Bloody Clumsy Wallaby a few years ago, when it bounced out of the scenery and into his lap while he was descending at some 80 km/h on a recumbent :o  No sign of the wallaby found afterwards, which was probably just as well for its continued well-being.

I've just seen something flying past the office which looked alarmingly like a puffin.  While I believe there are colonies of wallabies living in various places in the UK, I cannot cope with the idea of puffins - especially solitary puffins - on the Essex/Herts border :hand:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 07 May, 2009, 05:29:59 pm
A great big one eyed rat in the City today (a few yards from where Mr. Tomlinson and the Police tangled last week).

I stood a couple of feet away from it and watched and it ignored me completely. It couldn't care less about a human.

… and when I turned my head, it turned it's head. My God, it was my reflection in a window!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 07 May, 2009, 07:27:47 pm
Rode through a swarm of bees today. Had to stop to shake the blighters off. No stings!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 08 May, 2009, 05:19:23 pm
Swifts calling in Embra last night ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 08 May, 2009, 06:49:27 pm
Rode through a swarm of bees today. Had to stop to shake the blighters off. No stings!

A swarm of bees in May...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 08 May, 2009, 06:53:24 pm
Rode through a swarm of bees today. Had to stop to shake the blighters off. No stings!
A swarm of bees in May...
What else would you call lots of bees flying across the road? (a lot of bees flying across the road  ::-))
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 08 May, 2009, 07:54:58 pm
Mr & Mrs Blackbird are making a nest in the hedge right outside our kitchen window  :thumbsup:.

Looking forward to some domestic goings-on in the next few weeks - assuming they aren't all eaten by one of the cats  ::-).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 08 May, 2009, 10:25:06 pm

A swarm of bees in May...

"A swarm in May is worth a load of hay; a swarm in June is worth a silver spoon; but a swarm in July is not worth a fly"
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 09 May, 2009, 12:08:56 am
When I was bee-keeping, we changed the last line to "Let the buggers fly."
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 09 May, 2009, 04:01:26 pm
Swifts calling in Embra last night ...
They've been squealing around here for a while.

As I was trying for size the roof I've made for the birdtable, a blue tit decided it was time for lunch. I could have reached out & grabbed the cheeky little bugger.

A pair have taken over a neighbours nestbox. I'm looking forward to fledglings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 09 May, 2009, 04:08:41 pm
That squealing sound of the Swallows is deep-rooted in my mind. One of my earliest memories is of me kneeling on my bed in my jim-jams, looking out of the window at a hot dusty red setting midsummer sun; way too hot for bed (I was probably about 5, so had to go to bed about 7pm), and the swallows squealing around in the street and between the houses.

< sigh >
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 10 May, 2009, 11:01:30 am
A Peacock on someone's front lawn. The bloody noisy, eerie sounding bugger!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 10 May, 2009, 11:06:51 am
A Goldfinch on the feeder.  First time I've spotted one in our garden - we normally have Great Tits rather than finches around.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 10 May, 2009, 09:47:17 pm
We had a goldfinch today, after a long spell of not seeing any. They seem to come & go. The feeder was mobbed by them at times last year, but sometimes there are none for weeks. The blue tits & great tits - and blackbirds visiting the bird table & rummaging around on the ground, particularly in whichever bed has most recently had compost put on it (more worms!) - are regulars, but only in small numbers.

Greenfinches, chaffinches, linnets & coal tits come & go. Thrushes come slug or snail hunting now & again. Collared doves & feral pigeons pick up bits dropped from the feeder.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 14 May, 2009, 11:14:34 am
A pair of greater spotted woodpeckers feeding young.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 14 May, 2009, 11:34:33 am
Well, Butterfly didn't mention it, so I will.

Turns out that the gardening didn't drive the fox away.

In fact, last night, as we ate dinner, three cubs tumbled out of the den and played in the garden.  Delightful.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 14 May, 2009, 11:51:03 am
A Heron. Out of all birds they seem to be the hardest to get close to. They're off like a shot.
Must be a 'fear of humans' thing inbred into them from century's of man guarding his fish stocks.



(Thanks Nobby)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 14 May, 2009, 02:18:12 pm
Heron at Betws Y Coed. Standing in the river near the Tourist Info place.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 14 May, 2009, 02:26:22 pm
Which reminds me (indirectly).  This morning, on carshalton Ponds, I saw an altercation between a Coot and a Moorhen.  If I didn't know better, I'd've said one of them had dishonourable intent...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 14 May, 2009, 02:43:40 pm
Which reminds me (indirectly).  This morning, on carshalton Ponds, I saw an altercation between a Coot and a Moorhen.  If I didn't know better, I'd've said one of them had dishonourable intent...

Which one?  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 15 May, 2009, 11:31:13 am
I think coots are grumpy aggressive gits.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 15 May, 2009, 11:33:04 am
It was the coot who was chasing.  They were a bit more subdued in the rain this morning... :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 15 May, 2009, 11:34:28 am
Just seen as I went outside - a fox in the car park.  Seemed to be either moulting or mangy.  The rear half had quite long hair; the frons seemed to be much shorter...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 15 May, 2009, 06:03:53 pm
Two goldfinches on my bird feeder, fighting a blue tit for possession of it. He chased one off for a while, but the finches have won it back now.
Title: The Partridge Family
Post by: border-rider on 17 May, 2009, 12:07:40 pm
In the yard.  They come and eat the ground food by the kitchen window too, but they're very timid.

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/partridges.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: IanDG on 17 May, 2009, 04:28:00 pm
A heron

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3055/3539244822_ff036215fe.jpg)

I see it most days, but I had a camera with me today  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 18 May, 2009, 11:41:27 am
Just had four Canada goose goslings wander right up to me with their mum.  :thumbsup:
They were too cute. I wanted to Ozzy Osbourne them for being overly cute.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 May, 2009, 11:49:09 am
Smart birds in our garden:

Great tit
Magpie

No others...

The great tit has found the new bird table, and has been nomming peanuts like mad.

I haven't seen any other birds near it.

The magpie, on the other hand, watched me from a distance as I hoed the veg patch, then, when I'd gone, swooped down and ate the grubs I'd disturbed.

Pigeons had better stay clear.  One of them gave me a fright.  As i came into the kitchen saturday morning, I thought I heard someone messing with the bikes.  I got into neanderthal security mode, but, when I peeped out, it was just one of those feathery pests perched on top of the tarpaulin.
Title: Re: The Partridge Family
Post by: Regulator on 18 May, 2009, 11:52:10 am
In the yard.  They come and eat the ground food by the kitchen window too, but they're very timid.

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/partridges.jpg)

Don't you like it when dinner comes to you...  :P ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 18 May, 2009, 01:37:31 pm
Well, seen on Friday: a hobby cruising over the treetops in Orpington.  I've only ever seen one once before, but a very distinctive and stylish animal.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 18 May, 2009, 01:48:14 pm
Pigeons had better stay clear.  One of them gave me a fright. ...

Do you want to borrow Talisker? ;D

... on the other hand, the last Pigeon I know he caught, he brought into the house and managed to loose control of it, until I came home and released it. :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 May, 2009, 02:26:26 pm
Awfully kind offer and all that, but I think my house is messy enough without feathers & pigeon cr@p everywhere! ;D
Title: Re: The Partridge Family
Post by: Tourist Tony on 18 May, 2009, 08:38:59 pm
In the yard.  They come and eat the ground food by the kitchen window too, but they're very timid.

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/partridges.jpg)
Frenchmen!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 19 May, 2009, 12:52:25 pm
It was the coot who was chasing.  They were a bit more subdued in the rain this morning... :-\

Coots are very aggressive and like to try and drown each other (and other birds if they can get away with it).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 21 May, 2009, 10:53:39 pm
Buzzard being mobbed by two crows less than a mile from the city centre.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 22 May, 2009, 09:47:21 am
2 ducks lving dangerously.

Probably haven't got a floating duck house to go to
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/P1020781.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 22 May, 2009, 11:22:34 am
That would be a confusing call from the front of a group of cyclists...

"Duck!"
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 22 May, 2009, 11:30:15 am
Reminds me of this (http://www.infoplease.com/images/ispantani.gif) that I posted earlier, as it happens :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 22 May, 2009, 01:05:56 pm
A small bat at 10.00 last night, flying out of Newington Cemetry over Dalkeith Road (hurrah for urban green space).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 22 May, 2009, 01:31:03 pm
The house martins have returned. Saw loads of them catching insects yesterday evening. Soon they will be building nests under our eves.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 22 May, 2009, 01:39:17 pm
The house martins have returned. Saw loads of them catching insects yesterday evening. Soon they will be building nests under our eves.

You'll be getting up early from now on then! Noisy buggers... :)

We had them at our last house, outside the kids bedroom. They used to love sitting on their bed watching the Martins come and go, feeding their babies.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 24 May, 2009, 10:49:45 am
An urban fox

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/Fox%203.jpg)

More photos here (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=19267.0)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 26 May, 2009, 08:51:24 am
Couple of newly fledged rooks, at two separate points on the trip.  Both dim as dust and intent on sitting in the road waiting to get squashed by whatever happens along next.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 27 May, 2009, 09:33:23 pm
This week: lots of painted lady butterflies :D. Some guinea fowl in a tree; swallows; swifts and a kestrel :D.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 27 May, 2009, 09:43:30 pm
Quote
In what could be the biggest influx of butterflies into this country in decades, millions have flown into Britain from the deserts of north Africa. Up to 18,000 were spotted sailing on the breeze across Scolt Head Island on the north Norfolk coast: 50 arriving every minute according to Natural England nature reserve staff.

The mass migration began last Thursday when large numbers were seen off Portland Bill in Dorset.

         Patrick Barkham on the arrival of millions of painted lady butterflies in Britain |
            Environment |
            The Guardian
    (http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/may/27/painted-lady-butterflies-migration-britain)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 28 May, 2009, 10:19:33 am
Wahay.  They definitely are here.  I just saw a Painted Lady flying through my garden, and I rarely seem to see butterflies these days. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 28 May, 2009, 10:24:16 am
I saw a LHD two seat car the other day where the passenger had a dog on his lap which looked, at first glance, to be driving the car. I was a little concerned because it was a springer which might not be first choice as a canine chauffeur.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 29 May, 2009, 11:58:48 pm
A muntjac crossing the road ahead of me & panicking when it noticed me coming, & a little later, a much rarer sight: a fallow deer walked onto a track in front of me. Turned & ran down the track ahead of me for a little while before running off into the woods.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 30 May, 2009, 01:06:30 pm
Goldfinch & tit:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3625/3577721841_d14b504c34_o.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3361/3578525554_37aa35af66_o.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2483/3577721995_b9977bba8c_o.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3360/3578525696_886b6d32c6_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 30 May, 2009, 03:21:32 pm
Later that same day, sparrows & the tit again:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3559/3578756532_36fffca744_o.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3323/3577952983_90d72b04c6_o.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2480/3577953087_b2b1ffc8c0_o.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3328/3578756824_ec1324f580_o.jpg)

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3587/3578756934_ec8be2c28e_o.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2465/3578757032_6dd0bbfe26_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 31 May, 2009, 09:22:48 pm
And today, a blackbird:

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2433/3582138611_d967b09934_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 31 May, 2009, 11:08:42 pm
Tonight - bats in our garden. This is the first year we've managed to see them here  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 01 June, 2009, 10:08:05 am
Yesterday I was watching the bats at dusk.  Doing a few dozen circuits of my garden before zooming off to moth central.

Also saw a few dozen chub up to 4lb, and a few dozen mirror carp up to 15lb basking just under the surface of the local river.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 01 June, 2009, 02:05:49 pm
Buzzard being mobbed by two crows less than a mile from the city centre.

At my parents over the weekend, there are a number of raptors have moved in, meaning that the little birds are keeping a low profile.

We saw a buzzard being 'mobbed' by one crow, which I'd not seen before.  And a buzzard and kestrel flying close together, taking no apparent notice of each other at all.

Heard a cuckoo and woodpeckers, which is always good. :)

Oh - and newts in the pond.  And mayfly, dragonfly and libelulla* flying over it.





* Yeah, I had to look it up too.  Butterfly noticed a 'fat dragonfly', and we didn't know what it was.  we do know :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 03 June, 2009, 10:41:00 pm
It seems the second robins' nest in our garage has been cuckoo'd.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 06 June, 2009, 11:21:03 am
Found UNDER my groundsheet on Tuesday morning:

(http://img188.imageshack.us/img188/6181/img0199j.jpg)



And:

(http://img4.imageshack.us/img4/3325/img0201cck.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 06 June, 2009, 09:08:34 pm
Aww, a lady Great Crested. Haven't seen one of those for ages now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 06 June, 2009, 09:50:12 pm
We saw a peacock today - he gave a wonderful display.  And there was a completely white one - not seen that before.  Is it an albino?

We were at Dene City Farm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 06 June, 2009, 10:15:18 pm
Aww, a lady Great Crested. Haven't seen one of those for ages now.
Yup. Spot which one I remembered to switch to the macro function for!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 06 June, 2009, 10:19:03 pm
Aww, a lady Great Crested. Haven't seen one of those for ages now.
Yup. Spot which one I remembered to switch to the macro function for!

 ;D 

Aww, seems Common Toad is too common.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 07 June, 2009, 12:47:48 am
There were two Bufos, but only one Livingstone
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 07 June, 2009, 11:09:32 am

Newt mostly comes out at night, mostly.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 08 June, 2009, 09:59:17 pm
On the Dunning Done In (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=18873.0):

Red squirrel, oystercatcher chicks, deer, ubiquitous buzzards & small goats on a caprine activity centre.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 08 June, 2009, 10:35:37 pm
We saw a peacock today...

That reminded me, we saw a couple of peacocks on the chimney's of a house as we cycled past on Saturday morning, I can't remember where we were exactly, but it must have been in the second half of the ride to be in daylight.

Rather bizarrely I had to think a bit about peacocks flying, since I've only ever seen them wandering about the estates of large houses (National Trust etc).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 11 June, 2009, 11:42:17 am
A Red Kite over the High Street in the village :thumbsup:
Apparently there is a pair nesting in the Dove Valley between here & Uttoxeter.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 11 June, 2009, 06:23:31 pm
Just heard a very voluble cuckoo here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=592985&y=184132&z=115&sv=592985,184132&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=723&ax=592985&ay=184132&lm=0). Possibly already reported by Wowbagger. And loads of wabbits!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 11 June, 2009, 09:47:57 pm
Someone's been sleeping in my garden...

(http://www.ivy-house.org.uk/images/deer1.jpg)

Bambi for dinner darling...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 13 June, 2009, 08:06:27 pm
Greenfly  :demon:.

Many Many of them - same as yesterday. I returned from a bike ride yesterday, literally coated in them - arms, torso and shorts. I inhaled them, swallowed them and had to stop on occasions to extract them from my nose and ears.

There is a large cloud of them in my front garden right now.

This can only mean one thing.

DDT

It's only a week or two before the...

*shudders*

thunderflies appear.  :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 13 June, 2009, 10:22:46 pm
A Barn Owl hunting in broad daylight at 8.30 this evening.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 17 June, 2009, 10:28:35 pm
A heron.  Nothing new there, but I was on the fifth floor of the delightful Premier Lodge, West Bromwich, and it was flying across the town, way below me. Looked dead good, so it did.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 17 June, 2009, 10:49:32 pm
A heron.  Nothing new there, but I was on the fifth floor of the delightful Premier Lodge, West Bromwich, and it was flying across the town, way below me. Looked dead good, so it did.

There is quite a lot of Wetland just up the motorway from there,near the M6/M5 intersection
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 18 June, 2009, 11:08:00 pm
Road kill 200 yards from my front door. Glove in for scale

(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/6281/img0217jog.jpg)

(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/4049/img0218aob.jpg)


She was pregnant.
(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/1313/img0219y.jpg)


Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 19 June, 2009, 03:12:41 am
Eight separate urban foxes on the way home, about 2/3rds of them nowhere near parks, presumably foraging in rubbish bins.  Certainly the one I almost ran over when I surprised him, was going through rubbish bags put out by a shop on the A23.

That's a record for foxes on the way home, although I've seen six on previous occasions.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 19 June, 2009, 10:13:32 am
I watched 'our' vixen for nearly an hour last night as I did the washing up etc..
She's darker brown than you average fox.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 20 June, 2009, 08:53:55 am
Buzzard, over Coulsdon, yesterday. Rather unusual over this side!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 20 June, 2009, 03:28:22 pm
Cockatiel.  At the suggestion of a couple who might be the owners,  I've spent half the morning standing in the garden waving a bit of cucumber and calling Jonjo. It looks interested, but doesn't come near. Now waiting for them to turn and up and entice it, if indeed it's their Jonjo.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 20 June, 2009, 03:55:51 pm
2 marmots, whistling loudly and not noticing me :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zoidburg on 20 June, 2009, 04:21:21 pm
Yesterday morning I was awoken at dawn

By a small bird that had perched on the window sill and then  couldn't figure out how to get back out from underneath the partly open window which hinges from the top

It was bloody loud bird song follwed by a frantic flapping of wings between the curtains and the window.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 21 June, 2009, 05:39:43 pm
A dozen kites over Nuffield, wheeling around shrieking at each other. Someone must be feeding them.

A bloody blackbird which had dug up two of my lobelia plants in its search for worms. That bed is full of compost (my own manufacture), & is therefore also full of worms  - which makes it blackbird heaven. I don't mind them rooting around for worms, but digging up my flowers is taking the piss. I am annoyed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 21 June, 2009, 09:39:15 pm
Treecreeper, part timing as a wall creeper, just by Salter's Steamers in Oxford.

Terns, doing their thing yesterday, at Hardwick Park campsite.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 June, 2009, 01:23:02 pm
Today: saw, and heard, a late cuckoo ("late" not as in dead, but approaching the unseasonal). It cuckooed whilst on the wing, which is fairly unusual. Also a green woodpecker and two brace of shelduck.

Saturday: buzzard, hobby (over Glastonbury tor), barn owl, and several badgers, one encounter being so close that the bugger knocked me off my bike!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 23 June, 2009, 09:51:35 am
I'll see your Duck, young master MV and raise you one Pheasant:

(http://www.ivy-house.org.uk/images/pheasant.jpg)

They have a very evocative call on a crisp Autumn morning, echoing through a foggy wood as the suns rays shine through golden leaves in misty shafts of light. It starts to grate a bit when it's right outside your back door for two bleedin' hours  >:(.

* resists temptation to grab air rifle *
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 23 June, 2009, 09:58:24 am
* resists temptation to grab air rifle *

Why?  8)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 23 June, 2009, 10:04:09 am
* resists temptation to grab air rifle *

Why?  8)

I'm not a terribly good shot...  :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 24 June, 2009, 12:22:34 pm
A fly/beetle. The front half was vivid green and the back half iridescent ruby red. Quite spectacular. It was about a centimetre long. Any ideas what it was?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 24 June, 2009, 07:26:35 pm
A fly/beetle. The front half was vivid green and the back half iridescent ruby red. Quite spectacular. It was about a centimetre long. Any ideas what it was?

At a guess we are all doomed
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 June, 2009, 08:41:49 pm
Yesterday: a pair of sparrowhawks wheeling above our outdoor tai chi cavortings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 24 June, 2009, 08:54:07 pm
Yesterday: a pair of sparrowhawks wheeling above our outdoor tai chi cavortings.

Chinese take-away?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 24 June, 2009, 11:16:04 pm
A man out walking a rather pretty ferret :D. Lots of butterflies and dear in Richmond Park. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 24 June, 2009, 11:17:22 pm
My first Leopard slug tonight, in the compost bin.  Bloody huge, it was.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 24 June, 2009, 11:43:51 pm
A pair of buzzards twirling above the M23 near Outwood.   I've seen a solo one that way before, so I guess they must live round there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 June, 2009, 07:48:36 am
A man out walking a rather pretty ferret :D. Lots of butterflies and dear in Richmond Park. :)

You had him out in his bathchair, then? ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 25 June, 2009, 05:18:25 pm
A cormorant, stretching its wings and basking in the sun on a mud bank beneath Monnow Bridge.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 27 June, 2009, 12:04:50 pm
A green woodpecker, again near Outwood.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 June, 2009, 03:07:25 pm
Yesterday, whilst we were out walking the dog, I noticed that a lot of large carp could be seen close to the surface of the park lakes. There are usually one or two, but then I noticed that I could see the shoals of rudd near the surface as well. Then, the clincher form me: there was a sizeable tench close to the surface, gulping in water from the very top. Tench are bottom-feeders and rarely come close to the surface. I was sure that the lakes were dangerously deoxygenated so I phoned the council to tell them so.

This morning, Mrs. Wow took the dog out. There were two pumps spraying the water into the air and a notice "No fishing on 27th & 28th June due to low oxygen levels."

Smug mode! :smug:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 27 June, 2009, 04:24:56 pm
Well done that man
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 27 June, 2009, 05:38:46 pm
Indeed! Well done!   :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 27 June, 2009, 11:03:59 pm
A female sparrowhawk zooming over the crowd, pointed out by Tourist Tony,as we watched "Touchstone" at Crawley Folk Festival.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 01 July, 2009, 08:48:20 pm
A stoat, which ran three quarters of the way across the road, then turned and ran back again.

It was so quick that I couldn't see it turn, it was facing right one moment, then left a millisecond later. It almost looked like a computer arcade animation, it changed direction so quickly.

I see a lot of weasels at home but this is the first stoat this year, and was in Norfolk.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 01 July, 2009, 11:30:43 pm
Not seen: a black cap.

The bloody thing was singing in a tree right in front of me, but in spite of searching with binoculars, I'm damned if I could see it.

I walked quietly round the other side of the tree in order to get a different view, and when I got there the git flew into a tree which was closer to where I had been standing originally, but I didn't see it go. Its song just came from a different place.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 01 July, 2009, 11:34:45 pm
f'in loads of horse flies

My usual run has a stretch though a field with, erm, some horses and I get bitten to death whilst fumbling with the decrepit old gate.

Ow. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 July, 2009, 02:22:16 pm
Ripe mulberries in our local park. I ate them! :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tom M on 09 July, 2009, 10:49:21 am
Saw a badger at about 9-45 in the dusk last night on way home from the track league.

Heading along a country lane and spy something at the side of the road, which I though might have been a cat initially. As I got closer I realised what it was and stopped.

It just sat there for about 20 seconds looking at me in a rather curious fashion, then decided he'd run up the road for about 30m, and dive off into a hedge.

Not sufficient time to extract my phone (for camera) from my bag though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 09 July, 2009, 11:10:58 am
You're just lucky that it wasn't one of the Ninja Badgers that went for Wow. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 09 July, 2009, 11:17:28 am
Yesterday, whilst we were out walking the dog, I noticed that a lot of large carp could be seen close to the surface of the park lakes. There are usually one or two, but then I noticed that I could see the shoals of rudd near the surface as well. Then, the clincher form me: there was a sizeable tench close to the surface, gulping in water from the very top. Tench are bottom-feeders and rarely come close to the surface. I was sure that the lakes were dangerously deoxygenated so I phoned the council to tell them so.

This morning, Mrs. Wow took the dog out. There were two pumps spraying the water into the air and a notice "No fishing on 27th & 28th June due to low oxygen levels."

Smug mode! :smug:

Well done that man, and well done to the council too for acting on it.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 09 July, 2009, 09:39:45 pm
A small flock of long tailed tits on Mitcham Common and a HUGE flock of seagulls near Hackbridge, probably 1000 birds.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 09 July, 2009, 09:59:40 pm
I saw a Cormorant on the Thames , not unusual in itself , feasting on a great shoal of very small fish. After I had taken a few photos it hopped out of the water and posed in front of me for some close-ups. I was struck by how similar it looked to the Booby of the Galapagos.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/70368/b50ca7437/posingcormc.jpg)

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)


Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 12 July, 2009, 02:12:09 pm
A Large White butterfly being eaten alive by ants. Not sure what species: I'm useless on ants. Deep reddish-brown, vicious things that bite people at the drop of a hat, & therefore a bit of a nuisance in the garden. They'd bitten off parts of its wings & the end of its abdomen when spotted. It was struggling weakly.

A blackbird sunbathing on a neighbours shed roof. It was spreading its wings & tail in the sunshine. After a while, it preened its feathers back into shape, & flew off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 12 July, 2009, 02:53:26 pm
Cabbage White? Possibly no great loss.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 12 July, 2009, 04:39:19 pm
Cabbage White?
Yep. That's what a Large White is. But I spent years being told that Cabbage White (what I always called it as a child) was a local name, not necessarily understood in other parts of the country, & rather got out of the habit.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 12 July, 2009, 04:54:13 pm
Yesterday, a muntjac deer decided to cross the road in front of us as we left Wicken Fen.  One look at Wobbly John on his recumbent contraption, bearing down on it, and it bounded back into the hedge.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 12 July, 2009, 06:44:52 pm
Interestingly, Butterfly removed a few caterpillars from the blackcurrant bush to the birdtable, but some ants got in there before the birds...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 12 July, 2009, 07:18:50 pm
Some Deer in a field between Haywards Heath and Ardingly :).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 12 July, 2009, 07:22:09 pm
Stopped off at the river, there's a disused barn there that's home to lots of house martins.
I stood still and was "buzzed" by them. They sometimes came within 3ft of me.  :o

I also watched a kingfisher fly inches above the water just as the sun broke out of the clouds.
A wonderful spash of iridescent turquoise.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 12 July, 2009, 10:29:09 pm
Stopped off at the river, there's a disused barn there that's home to lots of house martins.
I stood still and was "buzzed" by them. They sometimes came within 3ft of me.  :o
Last summer, Mrs B & I had a swift fly between us as we walked across a field (we felt the draught!), & saw one take an insect we were watching from maybe 3 or 4 feet away. Amazing birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 13 July, 2009, 12:09:15 am
Heard, rather than seen:  several quail out in the fields of East Lothian.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 14 July, 2009, 06:18:18 pm
A young fallow deer in the middle of the road. It seemed lost. It looked at me, I stopped and it walked towards me for a few paces. After I spoke to it, it pranced into a wheat field and was gone. It must have been less than ten yards from me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 14 July, 2009, 07:06:24 pm
It was an advance scout for the badgers.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Clare on 16 July, 2009, 03:40:35 pm
A bat, not sure what type, flew into me last night as I was riding home, got caught on my sleeve, flapped about a bit then flew off.

That's the second time a bat has flown into me in the past week, what happened to sonar?

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 16 July, 2009, 03:42:18 pm
Perhaps you're the ultimate stealth cyclist?

Sorry Mate I Didn't Sonar You?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Clare on 16 July, 2009, 03:56:18 pm
Maybe; both events happened on the same stretch of road, so maybe it's just one very stooopid bat.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 16 July, 2009, 04:00:11 pm
Maybe it just likes you?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Clare on 16 July, 2009, 04:03:11 pm
I shall love it and hug it and call it George.

 ;D

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 17 July, 2009, 09:28:31 am
Seen yesterday... a weasel  :thumbsup:

It dashed across the road in front of me, then sat on the verge looking at me and 'chirping' at me.  I stopped to get the camera out but it did a runner as soon as I stopped.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 17 July, 2009, 10:08:33 am
This morning on my (deepest rural suffolk) commute:
Momma roe deer and her two spindly legged bambi bambinos. So purty. And dozens of hares- I think the start of harvest has sent even more of them running about.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 18 July, 2009, 06:23:09 pm
Mummy, daddy & fledgling chaffinch in the garden. Fledgling sat on the fence while the parents fed at my seed feeder, sometimes popping over to to give the youngster some grub.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 19 July, 2009, 11:50:11 am
An owl

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2522/3734125201_7a33c17f7a_o.jpg)

Wrong camera with me though!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 19 July, 2009, 12:10:39 pm
Chaffinch mother & young have been back. Youngster was still being fed, but had a tentative go at the feeder. It'll be back on its own soon. Also (at the same time) a blue tit & a slightly fluffy fledgling, but the latter stayed in the neighbours buddleia, while mum commuted back & forth.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 July, 2009, 12:50:42 pm
28 sparrows in our hedge, and a little owl sitting on the barn roof and shouting his head off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 19 July, 2009, 03:08:24 pm
four!!! rabbits sitting on the lawn this morning. Cocky little buggers didnt even run off when I opened the kitchen door, they just sat there and watched me. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 21 July, 2009, 05:23:39 pm
I was cycling round Trafalgar Square earlier and I saw this .......





(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/71642/0ad00ad4f/CormorantOnPlinth.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 30 July, 2009, 12:05:09 pm
A virtuoso display of flying and insect catching right in front of our windows.

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/birds.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 30 July, 2009, 01:00:59 pm
A (wild) black rabbit.  Third sighting of same.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Kathy on 30 July, 2009, 02:42:12 pm
A (wild) black rabbit.  Third sighting of same.

Whereabouts are you? There used to be lots along Pilgrim's Way in Kent, near Wrotham. We had one in our garden.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 30 July, 2009, 04:36:08 pm
6 moorhens and a heron sheltering under the trees next to the now very large pond.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: docsquid on 30 July, 2009, 04:52:40 pm
Sparrowhawk devouring a collared dove in our garden.

(http://www.alvecotewood.co.uk/images/sparrowhawk3.jpg)

The cats were most perturbed by seeing a bird as big and fierce as they were (actually, a bit more fierce than them, judging by the way they kept behind me!)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Julian on 30 July, 2009, 06:58:23 pm
The reason the cat didn't fancy his usual sitting outside in the garden this morning:

(http://i57.photobucket.com/albums/g219/liz1848/Vegetables/P7300004.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 30 July, 2009, 07:02:09 pm

93, 94, 95, 96... O Hai... I iz the pushup master.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zipperhead on 02 August, 2009, 11:24:39 pm
I saw lots of animals today, but this snail was most impressive

(http://lh3.ggpht.com/_3a8mQ6kkehU/SnYRAjMW3mI/AAAAAAAAFDM/ugFJbOYsInE/s640/IMG_2088.JPG)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 02 August, 2009, 11:33:45 pm
Sparrowhawk devouring a collared dove in our garden.

(http://www.alvecotewood.co.uk/images/sparrowhawk3.jpg)

The cats were most perturbed by seeing a bird as big and fierce as they were (actually, a bit more fierce than them, judging by the way they kept behind me!)

Aren't they magnificent creatures?

That's a female. Males are smaller and their barring is brown rather than grey.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 03 August, 2009, 07:53:52 am
A (wild) black rabbit.  Third sighting of same.

Whereabouts are you? There used to be lots along Pilgrim's Way in Kent, near Wrotham. We had one in our garden.  :thumbsup:
Deepest, darkest, wildest Glowsestershire.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 03 August, 2009, 07:10:25 pm
I saw lots of animals today, but this snail was most impressive

(http://lh3.ggpht.com/_3a8mQ6kkehU/SnYRAjMW3mI/AAAAAAAAFDM/ugFJbOYsInE/s640/IMG_2088.JPG)

Jesus! That thing would just shrug off Nutty's mouse traps.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 11:47:27 am
Well, seen a week or so ago....

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/5273/img0726ykm.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/6356/img0730mhi.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/1817/img0732b.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/8104/img0695c.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/7121/img0736w.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/799/img0699h.jpg)

(http://img33.imageshack.us/img33/2083/img0264o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 August, 2009, 11:52:54 am
What is it? </ignorant> :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 11:59:52 am
What is it? </ignorant> :-[
three different birds
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 August, 2009, 12:06:17 pm
Oh.  I only saw the top two first time round, and thought they might be the same species. :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 12:15:34 pm
What is it? </ignorant> :-[
three different birds
edit: a several of birds and some butterflies, for others to ID
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 04 August, 2009, 12:48:02 pm
Woodchat shrike; red-backed shrike; middle-spotted?? woodpecker; black stork x2 pics; butterfly sp; white admiral.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 01:43:55 pm
Woodchat shrike; red-backed shrike; middle-spotted?? woodpecker; black stork x2 pics; butterfly sp; white admiral.
Nope; yep; nope; yep; -; nope.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 04 August, 2009, 02:01:40 pm
Ah.  Lesser grey shrike #1.  Lesser spotted woodpecker.  Purple emperor.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 02:13:27 pm
Ah.  Lesser grey shrike #1.  Lesser spotted woodpecker.  Purple emperor.
Which one?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 August, 2009, 02:20:45 pm
Emperor Rosko? (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emperor_Rosko) ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 04 August, 2009, 05:29:24 pm
In order, the butterflies are a lesser purple emperor (which was sitting on my hand just before that shot) and a purple emperor.
I had to stalk the lesser grey shrike for about half an hour before I could get some decent pics, but the redbacked is incredibly common in Hungary--a garden bird. Another stunningly common bird, which made up my dawn chorus in Tiszafured, was the golden oriole.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 05 August, 2009, 11:30:27 pm
A Pipistrelle in the lounge just now.

Dunno how it got in, but it seemed quite relaxed.  It let me pick it up once it had settled, and then clung to my finger.  I took it out but it seemed quite happy, sitting there looking at me.  So I poked it gently and it squeaked disapprovingly and buggered off into the night :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 06 August, 2009, 01:45:22 am
In' a bat jussa vole wiv wings?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 06 August, 2009, 08:08:13 am
:)

This chap was tiny (of course) compared to the hefty voles that the cat dines handsomely upon.

One of those buggers swooping round the lounge would have been...startling
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 06 August, 2009, 09:07:03 am
Lucky the cats didn't get it.  I lurv bats, and was quite upset when Rebel brought a half-chewed one in & left it on the carpet in front of where I was eating my dinner... :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 06 August, 2009, 09:22:55 am
Lucky the cats didn't get it.  I lurv bats, and was quite upset when Rebel brought a half-chewed one in & left it on the carpet in front of where I was eating my dinner... :'(

The cats had gone to bed.  I was half watching the end of Terminator 2 when something black moving on the carpet caught my eye - I thought it was a cat's paw at first (I wasn't really looking) and then it took off.

I still can't figure out where it came from, and why it was walking across the carpet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 06 August, 2009, 11:07:09 am
A half-sized rabbit. 

I noticed it sitting on the paving slab outside my office door, looking in at me, probably no more than 10 feet away. I swore at it and it it hopped slowly away and lolloped into the house.  It got as far as the kitchen table then spotted one of the cats sitting on a chair under the table, turned and ran for it before the cat realised that it's lunch had self-delivered.

Darwin may be proven right if it tries it again and the cat is awake.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 06 August, 2009, 03:56:05 pm
Yesterday, I discovered an unusual potential food allergy.

I am highly allergic to ant bites - particularly so when they are flying.

Yesterday was one of those extremely humid days, and, as I crossed Figges marsh, I felt something thudding against me.  Several ants were getting caught in the hair on my arms and legs.  I stopped and removed them, but there were so many it was really difficult.

Up by Mitcham eastfields station, there were swarms of them all along the road.  Then, when we got to Hackbridge, there were more clouds of insects.  Bouncing off us as we rode along, but one got into my mouth.  OK, so I did pretty much panic at that point, but I spat (most of) it out, very aware of how an anaphylactic reaction in my mouth or throat might affect and tried to get another ant out of my eye before we got to the supermarket.

Is it me, or are we getting more of these beasties each year?  I don't like it, I tell ya. >:(

to be fair, I think the ants and I agree that they are not for human consumption...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 07 August, 2009, 11:37:00 pm
A couple of ferrets, some rabbits, pigs, cows, goats, pretty birds, alpacas, turkeys, ducks, hens and peacocks and sheep at Deen city farm :D. And the heron in the wandle again. I hope he catches more than the anglers ;D.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 09 August, 2009, 08:34:50 am
Lots of bunnies on the FNRttC.  I'm normally hopeless at spotting wildlife on rides, but for some reason I kept on seeing rabbits sprinting away from the mad cyclists that clearly they hadn't expected to see that early in the morning!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: smiles on 09 August, 2009, 09:39:59 am
We now sleep on a small gallery in the Barn that's been under renovation for longer than I'd like to say ..... woke up in the early hours of this morning  :o with bats flying around the place, flying something like a figure-of-eight up and down the barn, swooping to within a foot of my face ...... not sure what to make of that !!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 09 August, 2009, 09:51:24 am
We now sleep on a small gallery in the Barn that's been under renovation for longer than I'd like to say ..... woke up in the early hours of this morning  :o with bats flying around the place, flying something like a figure-of-eight up and down the barn, swooping to within a foot of my face ...... not sure what to make of that !!

You're a bit batty you two.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 09 August, 2009, 10:45:16 am

Grasshoppers. I love the way they STFU when you get too close.   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 10 August, 2009, 09:25:27 am
Strolling along by the Beaulieu river between Beaulieu and Bucklers Hard at the weekend I discovered a bird watching hide that wasn't there (I'm sure) the last time I visited the area.
I sat inside for a while looking at a bird-free pond then noticed a finch-sized , mainly brown bird in the pondside vegetation. It had a reddish upper breast. I thought of Redpoll and Linnet. I didn't notice any red on the head. Could this indicate the female Linnet ? Could it be anything else ? Is anybody familiar with that area and its birdlife ?

Snake


 Cycling Items  (http://www.yudu.com/groups/details/58/The-Open-Group-For-Cycling-Related-Items)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 14 August, 2009, 08:36:49 am
Sounds like a linnet to me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 14 August, 2009, 11:44:45 am
A tawny owl last night as dusk approached and I was rushing hom to beat the dark.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 15 August, 2009, 02:37:01 pm



Privet hawk moth caterpillar in the garden, I always forget just how big the things are.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 15 August, 2009, 08:19:07 pm
On a tangent:

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v138/Chickenhawk66/DSC00004.jpg)

Found that rather amusing. Across the road from Imperial College in London.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 16 August, 2009, 07:15:22 am
... Found that rather amusing. Across the road from Imperial College in London.

LOL, the opposite of the normal "missing, answers to the name of ...". :)

I guess it proves that those posters work!


Yesterday I saw a fox at 5-30 in Norbury, wandering around amidst the few pedestrians out at that time, but then little else until a bunny sitting by the road in the evening, and then stacks of deer in Richmond park a few hours later.  Nothing too exotic, but nice to see all the deer, far more than I've seen in the past when the park was open to motor vehicles.  It was a solid indication that cycling through the park at speed in the dark would be a very very bad idea.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 16 August, 2009, 09:57:20 pm
Spotted an extremely large caterpillar during today's CTC ride.

(http://i200.photobucket.com/albums/aa292/Crumbling-Nick/100_1972foryacf.jpg)
It was walking rather rapidly along the road - a quiet Warwickshire lane in the Alne hills near Shelfield (or not too many miles from the Purity brewery, if that's your preferred navigation system). I'd guess it was about 10 cm long. The roadside verges were full of great willow herb. Seems to be an elephant hawk moth larva.

But...  Why was it on the road? Had it finished feeding and was searching for a place to pupate?



Also saw/heard lots of buzzards making very agitated noises in a couple of locations, as well as a quartet soaring and making the ususal call ('song'?). Dunno what's going on, but it seems to be an important time of the year for buzzards.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alexb on 17 August, 2009, 01:51:17 pm
Spotted an extremely large caterpillar during today's CTC ride.

(http://i200.photobucket.com/albums/aa292/Crumbling-Nick/100_1972foryacf.jpg)
It was walking rather rapidly along the road - a quiet Warwickshire lane in the Alne hills near Shelfield (or not too many miles from the Purity brewery, if that's your preferred navigation system). I'd guess it was about 10 cm long. The roadside verges were full of great willow herb. Seems to be an elephant hawk moth larva.

But...  Why was it on the road? Had it finished feeding and was searching for a place to pupate?


Definately an elephant hawkmoth, had you poked it it would have inflated the section with all the eyes on and waved it around at you in an extremely alarming manner. We used to get them near to us and the dog found one once and was terrified of it. Very funny.

Not sure why it would be on the road, however some caterpillars do move around to find food. There were loads of peacock caterpillars on my local common moving from one patch of nettles to another across the footpath recently.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tom M on 22 August, 2009, 10:08:08 am
Was out with the wife on her birthday the other day at Trentham Gardens (Stoke) and we saw our first wild otter. A nice treat anyway.

I called him Harry (otter)...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 23 August, 2009, 12:51:56 am
Seen a couple of weeks ago when I was making a bonfire (I moved all the stuff to burn from the pile to a new lace, just in case of this happening!)

Two babies - one awake, one not. Relocated to a sheltered spot. The not awake on looked just like a bundle of dry gorse needles.
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/hedgehogs_1.jpg)

A parent - quite heavy and way bigger than my hand
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/hedgehogs_2.jpg)

The adult scuttled off pretty quickly.
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/hedgehogs_3.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 23 August, 2009, 08:25:10 am
Very cute, and impressive camouflage.

Well done on making sure they didn't get toasted. :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: docsquid on 24 August, 2009, 07:30:49 pm
Well, OK, two days ago, but we've been busy with an open day at the woods.

(http://www.alvecotewood.co.uk/images/badger.jpg)

At last we managed to capture the badger at our woods using our remote IR camera.  We knew where he was scent marking his territory, but had a number of false starts with the camera battery running out and the wind dislodging the camera strapped to a tree.  Hope to see him again!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 24 August, 2009, 08:36:14 pm
Just seen: an owl flying across the field we're camping in :D. WOW! Also lots of swifts or swallows, can't tell the difference and just heard some bats. A good site :thumbsup:.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 26 August, 2009, 08:48:18 pm
Swallows and swifts:
Two completely different families of birds.
Swifts are apodidae, "footless". Four toes turned forward, legs too short to walk, or groom, so they suffer from parasites. Very long wings, which they sometimes beat alternately, so they seem to rock as they fly. They have very short "arms", so their wings look like simple sickle blades. Look all dark. Often fly in groups around buildings, screaming.

Swallows are hirundines, with three UK species: swallow, and sand and house martins. The two martins have shorter tails than the swallow, but all three have white bellies.
Swallow and house martin: dark blue-black, white belly.
House martin: white rump.
Sand martin: brownish, no white rump. smaller, brown band across breast.
All three twitter in flight. Swallows and house martins make mud nests, sand martins use burrows.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 27 August, 2009, 12:15:09 pm
Can someone explain to me why the bird feeder is unused for an hour, & then a greenfinch, goldfinch, blue tit & robin all arrive at once & squabble over it?

What do they think they are? Buses?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 27 August, 2009, 12:30:59 pm
Can someone explain to me why the bird feeder is unused for an hour, & then a greenfinch, goldfinch, blue tit & robin all arrive at once & squabble over it?

What do they think they are? Buses?

Nah, just hungry...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 27 August, 2009, 12:33:51 pm
Can someone explain to me why the bird feeder is unused for an hour, & then a greenfinch, goldfinch, blue tit & robin all arrive at once & squabble over it?

What do they think they are? Buses?

12.15pm .... lunch time init? ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 01 September, 2009, 11:34:19 pm
An apparently famished & extremely messy juvenile goldfinch, which I shall call Onan for reasons you should be able to work out, that spent a longer time munching through the contents of my back garden feeder than any other bird I've seen on it.

Meanwhile, a juvenile dunnock sat on the wall nearby looking wistfully at the feeder & Onan's scatterings as they flew past it, apparently unable to work out what to do. It eventually went for a forage among my tomato plants.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 03 September, 2009, 12:11:54 pm
A pigeon, bouncing off my windscreen.

At least it didn't leave its entrails in the radiator grill like the last one I got.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 September, 2009, 05:19:41 pm
Kingfisher. A flash of emerald-green over the Kennet by Waterloo meadows, in Reading.

And Onan's been back. It's growing up: got a little red showing on the face now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 05 September, 2009, 01:46:30 pm
Today at last I saw our friendly neighbourhood Sparrowhawk in my garden. It shot out of one of the bushes about 20ft in front of me , did an abrupt U-turn , and went back after its intended prey , which I suspect was a blackbird.
What noises do they make when devouring their prey. There was a prolonged but intermittent single-note sound from a neighbouring garden.

Snake

 Cycling Related Items  (http://www.yudu.com/groups/details/58/The-Open-Group-For-Cycling-Related-Items)  
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: numbnuts on 05 September, 2009, 02:25:10 pm
I saw a stoat, but it was dead  :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 05 September, 2009, 07:53:08 pm
I saw a stoat, but it was dead  :'(

Dead badger at the side of the road today. Pretty fresh-looking, no smell as we sailed past.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 05 September, 2009, 11:23:25 pm
(http://www.reb.co.uk/sssssssssssss.jpg)

Our cats are branching out from mice and voles - one of them bought home a dead baby grass snake today!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 06 September, 2009, 12:02:24 am
This, with others, on Friday evening, near Brigstock.

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/red_kite.jpg)

I think it is a red kite?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 06 September, 2009, 12:11:03 am
Could be a Black Kite in that part of the world, an even better spot if it is.

Have Red Kites got that far east yet?   I didn't think so, although they're getting almost common in Wales, which is a bloody good result.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 06 September, 2009, 05:35:39 pm
Could be a Black Kite in that part of the world, an even better spot if it is.

Have Red Kites got that far east yet?   I didn't think so, although they're getting almost common in Wales, which is a bloody good result.
I don't know how far they've spread from where they were reintroduced north of Henley, but Red Kites are now very common in South Bucks,  South Oxfordshire, & some parts of Berkshire. We very often see them over Reading.

Aha! One of the other reintroduction sites was Rockingham Forest. I didn't know about that.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 06 September, 2009, 10:03:09 pm
Could be a Black Kite in that part of the world, an even better spot if it is.

Have Red Kites got that far east yet?   I didn't think so, although they're getting almost common in Wales, which is a bloody good result.

Red kite is *much* more likely.  Also, the tail looks too forked to me to be black kite (though it's been a while).

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 06 September, 2009, 10:12:23 pm
Large fungus in Glen Esk:

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2541/3894409276_ae645b9345_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 07 September, 2009, 12:21:18 pm
Could be a Black Kite in that part of the world, an even better spot if it is.

Have Red Kites got that far east yet?   I didn't think so, although they're getting almost common in Wales, which is a bloody good result.

Red kite is *much* more likely.  Also, the tail looks too forked to me to be black kite (though it's been a while).


Definitely a red kite.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 09 September, 2009, 01:08:17 pm
Just seen a Kingfisher fly under Kingston bridge just above the surface of the water.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 09 September, 2009, 08:23:57 pm
Bless my soul , I must get down to the river more often. Just by Teddington weir I saw a cormorant with a nine(ish) inch eel in its beak. The cormorant had a struggle killing the eel , at one point the eel wrapped itself round the cormorant's neck. Eventually subdued it went down in a couple of gulps.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 September, 2009, 09:28:03 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 10 September, 2009, 10:19:03 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.

Yes, I saw some when cycling between Oakham and Oundle earlier in the year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 10 September, 2009, 10:45:47 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.

Yes, I saw some when cycling between Oakham and Oundle earlier in the year.
Well, yes . . .  as I said above, it's one of the reintroduction sites.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 10 September, 2009, 10:59:26 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.

Yes, I saw some when cycling between Oakham and Oundle earlier in the year.
Well, yes . . .  as I said above, it's one of the reintroduction sites.

Did you add that line about Rockingham Forest as an edit? I don't remember it being there before...?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 10 September, 2009, 11:07:57 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.

Yes, I saw some when cycling between Oakham and Oundle earlier in the year.
Well, yes . . .  as I said above, it's one of the reintroduction sites.

Did you add that line about Rockingham Forest as an edit? I don't remember it being there before...?
Nope. It's always been there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 10 September, 2009, 11:08:55 am
Mrs. Wow and I have seen red kites in Northamptonshire while we've been driving along the A14. There's quite a decent colony in that area, it seems.

Yes, I saw some when cycling between Oakham and Oundle earlier in the year.
Well, yes . . .  as I said above, it's one of the reintroduction sites.

Did you add that line about Rockingham Forest as an edit? I don't remember it being there before...?
Nope. It's always been there.

Must get my eyes tested  ::-)  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 13 September, 2009, 10:05:32 pm
A horde of seagulls following a plough (no surprise there), & a smaller, but still substantial (they wouldn't stay still to be counted, but maybe 20) flock of kites, near Ipsden, South Oxfordshire, this afternoon. Tried to get pictures, but didn't get a decent one. The ploughman stopped for a chat, & told me they routinely followed the plough now, & wherever he went, he was sure to soon have a flock behind him. He said (& after he moved on, I confirmed it by observation) that the gulls (& he also said rooks, but there were none present on this occasion) kept out of the way of the kites, although he was confident that kites posed no threat to them. He thought perhaps they didn't distinguish between kites & more dangerous birds of prey.

I'd thought of the plough turning up worms, but he said as well as worms & other invertebrates, it turned up mice, voles & the like.

He reckoned that the crowds following him were one symptom (he though there were others) that there were too many kites in the locality for the available natural food (i.e. carrion), & agreed that people feeding them was probably a contributory factor, encouraging them to stay in the area when they should be dispersing to as yet uncolonised territory. He said that some of them were pretty tame - "not as they should be", in his words, & would approach very close to anyone with food, which he disapproved of, thinking wild creatures should remain wild.

A thoughtful ploughman.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 13 September, 2009, 10:15:56 pm
Two young kookaburras visited my balcony to enjoy the view of the river.

I've got a picture but can't post it (don't have a flicker account or similar)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 13 September, 2009, 10:32:02 pm
A horde of seagulls following a plough (no surprise there), & a smaller, but still substantial (they wouldn't stay still to be counted, but maybe 20) flock of kites, near Ipsden, South Oxfordshire, this afternoon. Tried to get pictures, but didn't get a decent one. The ploughman stopped for a chat, & told me they routinely followed the plough now, & wherever he went, he was sure to soon have a flock behind him. He said (& after he moved on, I confirmed it by observation) that the gulls (& he also said rooks, but there were none present on this occasion) kept out of the way of the kites, although he was confident that kites posed no threat to them. He thought perhaps they didn't distinguish between kites & more dangerous birds of prey.

I'd thought of the plough turning up worms, but he said as well as worms & other invertebrates, it turned up mice, voles & the like.

He reckoned that the crowds following him were one symptom (he though there were others) that there were too many kites in the locality for the available natural food (i.e. carrion), & agreed that people feeding them was probably a contributory factor, encouraging them to stay in the area when they should be dispersing to as yet uncolonised territory. He said that some of them were pretty tame - "not as they should be", in his words, & would approach very close to anyone with food, which he disapproed of, thinking wild creatures should remain wild.

A thoughtful ploughman.

I've seen kites pouncing down behind a plough in ones and twos, but never that many...they are much less common in West Berks though
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 13 September, 2009, 10:34:38 pm
Seen on Friday actually.  A big fox  - which is quite rare to see tiddling about round here - and two sheep that thought they were cows.  They were in with a small herd of young bulls, and the whole lot came trotting after me when I was running, in that curious way that cattle have.  The sheep seemed very at home with their bovine colleagues and came right up to me with the rest of the herd to have a good look.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 14 September, 2009, 01:22:37 pm
Two young kookaburras visited my balcony to enjoy the view of the river.

I've got a picture but can't post it (don't have a flicker account or similar)
Photobucket is free, up to a certain amount.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 15 September, 2009, 06:25:10 pm
A greedfinch. Sat on the feeder munching for so long I was beginning to wonder if it would be able to fly away. Looked very well-fed when it arrived.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 15 September, 2009, 09:01:05 pm
Two young kookaburras visited my balcony to enjoy the view of the river.

I've got a picture but can't post it (don't have a flicker account or similar)
Photobucket is free, up to a certain amount.

so is flickr, at least in the UK.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 18 September, 2009, 11:10:09 pm
3 red kites  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 19 September, 2009, 05:17:41 pm
And another today  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 20 September, 2009, 07:55:34 pm
A field of alpacas next to the A346 between Ogbourne St George and Ogbourne Maizey.  They are for sale, according to a large sign.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 20 September, 2009, 09:08:10 pm
A field of alpacas next to the A346 between Ogbourne St George and Ogbourne Maizey.  They are for sale, according to a large sign.

Don't tell Mrs. Wow...

Seen in the early hours of this a.m. whilst dog-walking - a badger and a fox in fairly quick succession crossing this road (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?X=587660&Y=186920&A=Y&Z=120).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 20 September, 2009, 09:14:44 pm
According to a colleague who keeps alpacas, the males get aggressive when they haven't been "relieved" for a while, and he sometimes spends winter evenings out in the field, wearing rubber gloves, er...there isn't really any way to skate around this...

(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 20 September, 2009, 09:20:10 pm
Some late(ish) swallows in Holyrood Park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 21 September, 2009, 02:17:38 am
These are the kookaburras who visited the other day.  Thanks for the photo tips.
(http://i787.photobucket.com/albums/yy155/sandyvigar/IMG00031-1.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: vorsprung on 21 September, 2009, 09:41:27 am
On last weeks trip to the pub I saw a badger on the way there, it was barely dark.
Usually I see them at 3am
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 21 September, 2009, 11:47:33 am
Did you buy it a drink when it got there?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 21 September, 2009, 07:12:25 pm
Last week, the Swallows were all lined up gossiping on the telephone wires1. Now they are all gone  :(

----------
1 No, I don't mean on the telephone  ::-)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 21 September, 2009, 10:46:44 pm
We saw some swallows yesterday. They're probably like the annoying twats who you hear getting called at airports. 'Just a couple more flies, they won't go wivout us'.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 24 September, 2009, 08:19:37 am
A finch fight! Goldfinch, chaffinch & greenfinch squabbling over the feeder, with a blue tit popping in & out while they distracted each other.

There's a dunnock on it now. No, chaffinch. No, that's gone now. Every time I look, it's changed.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 24 September, 2009, 10:00:17 pm
The sweetest thing :)

I was trundling up the lower reaches of the Gospel Pass on a very quiet road.  I passed a farm with a woman and a dog watching a gnarled Welsh farmer-type carrying a box to his car. He'd not seen me, and didn't see me seeing him lifting out a tiny puppy and giving it a surreptitious kiss :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 24 September, 2009, 10:59:14 pm
This morning, i saw a fox in Sandy Lane, Mitcham, with plenty of people around.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 24 September, 2009, 11:10:49 pm
This morning, i saw a fox in Sandy Lane, Mitcham, with plenty of people around.

I've also seen urban foxes quite blithely wandering about where there are a substantial number of people around.  Many seem to have learnt to be quite casual about humans in towns.

Having said that, I seem to get quite a varied responses to me and my bicycle from foxes that I've met on my commute.  Some seem quite surprised and leg it at speed, whilst others are unperturbed and just watch me cycle past.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 September, 2009, 12:31:30 am
Almost certainly the same badger tonight, in the same place as we saw it a few days ago. This time we were much closer to it - 20 or 30 feet away as it scampered across the road. It then stood in a garden and watched us for quite some time, and we watched it. The dog was very well behaved - I just spoke quietly to him and stroked him as he and the badger eyed each other up from, again, a distance of about 30'. Then the badger turned and disappeared into the shadows. All of this took place in a very urban environment, in Hill Road, just behind Prittlewell church. I wished I'd had my phone on me because I'd have got a pretty decent photograph.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 25 September, 2009, 01:12:57 pm
Skeins of geese honking their way south.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 25 September, 2009, 01:14:41 pm
Honking?  I thought it was downhill that direction ???
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 26 September, 2009, 06:42:33 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/vole.jpg)

This fine fellow of a vole.  I've been trying to catch him in the house for days - part of Big Cat's captive breeding programme.

You can see the cat bite marks on his back from when he was brought in.  He was feisty though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 September, 2009, 10:39:56 am
Almost certainly the same badger tonight, in the same place as we saw it a few days ago. This time we were much closer to it - 20 or 30 feet away as it scampered across the road. It then stood in a garden and watched us for quite some time, and we watched it. The dog was very well behaved - I just spoke quietly to him and stroked him as he and the badger eyed each other up from, again, a distance of about 30'. Then the badger turned and disappeared into the shadows. All of this took place in a very urban environment, in Hill Road, just behind Prittlewell church. I wished I'd had my phone on me because I'd have got a pretty decent photograph.

Last night there were two! They trotted along the road in front of me for a while and then disappeared into the same garden. Their movement turned the outside light on and the last I saw of them was on the back lawn of the house about to disappear through a line of conifers.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 27 September, 2009, 10:52:34 am
They're fairly bold.  The big males tend to stomp down their usual routes truculently, and won't get out of the way.  I've had to stop for them on the bike in West Berks, and once or twice, on quiet roads, in the car too

We had one resident in the garden for a while at our last house.  He was unconcerned by us watching him rootle as long as we didn't try to approach too closely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 September, 2009, 10:58:09 am
I was knocked off my bike by one on the Solstice Warty a couple of miles out from Glastonbury! ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 27 September, 2009, 11:03:32 am
Several people have been taken out by them on audaxs - as you can imagine, whizzing along rural lanes at night in summer you see quite a few*

Some of the injures have been quite nasty, and not just to the badger**

*On my first Denmead 600 in 2001 I was heading out to do the last 200 at about 1 am, and on a little lane in the middle of nowhere I encountered a family of cubs, rolling and playing :)

**It's usually the case that everyone asks how the badger faired. This tends to irritate a rider who may have spent a night in hospital and had their bike trashed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 September, 2009, 02:25:41 pm
An acquaintance of my brother's came off badly in a bike-badger interface. The same brother hit a badger with his car and the repair cost quite a bit. The badger was a write-off.

In my case I was on the Thorn doing my usual 10 or so mph so the bike was fine and I was only slightly grazed. The badger made a fair bit of noise as it ran off into the reeds & sedges beside the road.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 27 September, 2009, 05:04:40 pm
Loads of these:

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3491/3958487567_1d181a9b87_m.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner/3958487567/)

Then I saw these three. They didn't hang around very long.

(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/IMG_9575-01.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 27 September, 2009, 08:17:24 pm
Several people have been taken out by them on audaxs - as you can imagine, whizzing along rural lanes at night in summer you see quite a few
I've had a near miss with a young one that really, really had to cross the road in between two cyclists one Wednesday evening near Sonning Common, but never an actual collision.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 September, 2009, 12:53:20 am
(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/6677-1/badger01.jpg)

I decided to take the dog out a bit earlier than usual and then waited where I'd seen the badgers. I waited some time - over half an hour - during which time the church clock struck 12 and a police car trundled up the road. The officers failed to spot me. I was dressed in prowler's navy blue and concealed behind a telegraph pole. Then, shortly after midnight, this chap appeared. That's about the best photo I took. Soon afterwards a young lady opened the door in her nightie and introduced herself as Michèle. It is she that feeds the badgers. She invited me to come and take photos of them any time I wanted.

This fellow was eating bread that Michèle had put out, and although he was wary of me, he was clearly not sufficiently worried to bolt. Apparently there are four badgers that come along and have a midnight feast outside Michèle's house. Superb!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 28 September, 2009, 07:34:51 am
If you speak to Michelle, apparently they eat cat food but really love raisins. Obviously like just about everything else I have been told in my life this could all be bollocks.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: little miss mac on 28 September, 2009, 09:24:11 am
My first post on this thread for a very long time.
Seen this weekend at my parents' holiday place in W Sussex, a pair of rotund little quail, pecking around just outside the conservatory window early one morning.

Not stunningly exciting to those that see them all the time, but rather nice for a wildlife-starved Lunnener.    :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 28 September, 2009, 09:30:59 am
...a young lady opened the door in her nightie ...

What an odd place to have a door!

Good pic, though - old Brock sauntering down the street.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 28 September, 2009, 10:58:15 am
Soon afterwards a young lady opened the door in her nightie and introduced herself as Michèle.  She invited me to come and take photos of them any time I wanted.

Do you think that if I loiter around the streets late at night with a camera I might get an offer like that?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 28 September, 2009, 11:16:52 am
Soon afterwards a young lady opened the door in her nightie and introduced herself as Michèle.  She invited me to come and take photos of them any time I wanted.

Do you think that if I loiter around the streets late at night with a camera I might get an offer like that?
Either that, or the attentions of Fuzzy's ilk.   :P

Back to critters: why do all the birds turn up at once? None for an hour, then a robin, two blue tits, & a goldfinch, queuing up to eat.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 29 September, 2009, 05:48:01 pm
When cycling home from Walton-on-the-Naze and having just had a short diversion through Wix to buy some bread, I cycled past the following beastie.

So what is he/she? I think it's an adder but I'm not sure. He/she was about two and a half feet long.

(http://i738.photobucket.com/albums/xx30/Auntie_Helen/General%20pictures/DSC00046.jpg)

(http://i738.photobucket.com/albums/xx30/Auntie_Helen/General%20pictures/DSC00047.jpg)

(http://i738.photobucket.com/albums/xx30/Auntie_Helen/General%20pictures/DSC00048.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 September, 2009, 05:51:05 pm
Adder - not much else it can be.

There was a huuuge one just outside Newbury a few years ago that had gone a strange dark blue colour after death.  It looked really exotic...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 29 September, 2009, 06:01:53 pm
Well, I'd say grass snake, with those distinctive markings on the "neck" and the lack of zigzags.  But I've never seen a grass snake that big.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 September, 2009, 06:04:33 pm
I'd tend to agree - markings are not typically as an adder, but at that size I'd discounted a grass snake...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bumper on 29 September, 2009, 06:58:52 pm
It's a grass snake, apart from looking 100% like a grass snake  ;D

The best way to tell is to look at the pupils

grass = round pupils
adder = vertical slits

Grass snakes can grow way over 3ft, we have lots in a nature reserve at the bottom of my street. Lovely creatures and remind me of nice warm days, not seen many this year  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 29 September, 2009, 07:02:54 pm
There was a grey squirrel on the lawn this morning for quite a while.He busied himself burying stuff & eating other things before scuttling away via the framework of the gazebo on the bottom patio.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 September, 2009, 10:43:34 pm
Except it's a grass snake.

Edit: overlooked several posts on page change.

Grass snakes tend to grow considerably larger that adders. ISTR someone recording a grass snake over 5' in length somewhere in Hampshire once.

Grass Snake: Facts, Discussion Forum, and Encyclopedia Article (http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Grass_Snake#encyclopedia)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: robbo6 on 30 September, 2009, 10:17:49 am
It's a grass snake, the round pupils give it away even if the snake has odd colouring. Adders (and asp vipers in France) have slit pupils, like a cat in bright light.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 30 September, 2009, 12:13:53 pm
Grass snake -

(http://www.frizlite.co.uk/images/grass%20snake.jpg)

Adder -

(http://www.cdb.ucl.ac.uk/research/evans/Wild_adder_MarcEHJONES_080531.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 September, 2009, 02:17:49 pm
When you catch them, grass snakes have a very malodorous defence mechanism. I know this from personal experience.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 30 September, 2009, 06:42:28 pm
When you catch them, grass snakes have a very malodorous defence mechanism. I know this from personal experience.
You can always retaliate by getting Morph to breathe on 'em!!   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 September, 2009, 08:44:03 pm
When you catch them, grass snakes have a very malodorous defence mechanism. I know this from personal experience.
You can always retaliate by getting Morph to breathe on 'em!!   ;D

He's better now - better being relative. You can no longer smell him from the other side of the room, unless he farts.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 02 October, 2009, 09:28:39 am
There was a grey squirrel on the lawn this morning for quite a while.He busied himself burying stuff & eating other things before scuttling away via the framework of the gazebo on the bottom patio.

We had an action replay earlier this morning even using the same exit route.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 02 October, 2009, 09:50:05 am
Yesterday, near Elephant & Castle, I saw a black squirrel.  Yes, black ???

It was a tiny thing that ran across the road in front of me.  And it had a bushy tail, so it wasn't a rat. 

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 October, 2009, 06:07:58 pm
I was at Center Parc in Elveden Forest this week for a Workshop, and saw no end of squirrels and small deer.  I'm not sure what the deer species was, they were a lot smaller than the larger deer you see wandering around places like Richmond Park, probably only about the size of a medium sized dog.  I'll post a photo next week, since I've just had to power the server down for the weekend (electrical safety testing).

The squirrels are incredibly tame and cheeky, checking around the chalets for anything they can find to eat.  You come across them all the time when walking around the site, but on a bike you catch them even more unaware.  The entire site must have tens of thousands of them at least.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: docsquid on 02 October, 2009, 06:09:56 pm
Not today - last Sunday - a grey wagtail at our woods.  This was the first time ever it's been seen there (we have records going back to the 1960's from a local naturalist).  It was probably attracted by one of our ponds that is drying out a bit so there is plenty of mud.  Really pleased about that sighting.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 02 October, 2009, 06:37:38 pm
I was at Center Parc in Elveden Forest this week for a Workshop, and saw no end of squirrels and small deer.  I'm not sure what the deer species was, they were a lot smaller than the larger deer you see wandering around places like Richmond Park, probably only about the size of a medium sized dog.  I'll post a photo next week, since I've just had to power the server down for the weekend (electrical safety testing).


Would they be muntjac? (http://www.bds.org.uk/muntjac.html)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 02 October, 2009, 08:48:51 pm
Would they be muntjac? (http://www.bds.org.uk/muntjac.html)

Yes. Vermin of the Norfolk/Suffolk woods (among other places, doubtless).

If I had a garden (rather than a clearing) I'd not be happy- they root up plants. As it is, I am devising traps....

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 October, 2009, 09:21:28 pm
Yes, that looks like what we saw.  I guess in places like Center Parcs they don't do too much damage, it's basically forest with chalets scattered throughout.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 02 October, 2009, 09:25:30 pm
This was at the bottom of the garden at former Volio Towers.  For a sense of scale, look at the leaves in the hedge behind

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/muntjac3.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 03 October, 2009, 09:24:18 am
On the first Reggie Ride, a muntjac nearly lodged itself in the wheels of a rider as we departed Wicken Fen.  I don't know who was the most surprised....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 October, 2009, 12:49:30 am
Would they be muntjac? (http://www.bds.org.uk/muntjac.html)

Yes. Vermin of the Norfolk/Suffolk woods (among other places, doubtless).

If I had a garden (rather than a clearing) I'd not be happy- they root up plants. As it is, I am devising traps....
Free venison! Do you have a big freezer, or will you hang the meat to mature?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 04 October, 2009, 10:52:51 am
Rats  >:(

Eight pink baby ones and a gert big Mummy one:

(http://www.ivytodd.com/images/rats.jpg)

IN MY WORM BIN FFS! I hate squatters.

Needless to say, Mummy rat did a runner when I opened the lid to find this scene of Norveticus domesticity. The babies are now under my compost heap - very dead.

I've thrown away the contents of the wormery, rescued what few worms were left and started again, this time inside one of the sheds. I now can't stop washing my hands.

Hate rats.Hate rats.Hate rats.Hate rats.Hate rats.Hate rats.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 04 October, 2009, 07:57:07 pm
Free venison! Do you have a big freezer, or will you hang the meat to mature?

They're teeny things, hardly worth it Couple of casseroles and a few game pies.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 05 October, 2009, 07:40:59 pm
Here are the shots of the probable Muntjac's that I mentioned a few days back.

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/Deer1.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/MagnetometerWorkshop2009/P1010579.JPG)

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/Deer2.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/MagnetometerWorkshop2009/P1010580.JPG)

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/Deer3.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/MagnetometerWorkshop2009/P1010581.JPG)

Earlier on, one came much closer to the Chalet, but these were a hundred feet or so from the window.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 05 October, 2009, 07:44:43 pm
Not probable. Definite.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 06 October, 2009, 02:58:25 pm
Yesterday evening an enormous flock of crows gathering in the field inform of our house. Haven't seen such a big flock for ages. If it persists someone will be getting a shotgun out soon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 06 October, 2009, 04:48:34 pm
Not today exactly , last week actually , Turnstones in St Ives Cornwall , wandering around on the quayside and the harbour wall , not way off in the distance where you could hadly see them ....... http://www.yudu.com/i/1xwz (http://www.yudu.com/i/1xwz)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 07 October, 2009, 11:29:27 pm
Just rode in from work, on a dreary wet night. Cut off the road onto the bit of footpath that runs past my flat and somebody's dog was out for a walk on its own in the rain. i drifted up to a yard behind, and he looked round. I had a lovely clear view of the black and white stripes in my headlights before Brock dove into the hedge.
Closest I have ever been to a live one! Magic! But no camera to hand.....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 08 October, 2009, 12:06:01 am
Fleeting view last Thursday from the train as it left Poole. Large predatory bird on a post, not 20 yards from the train. I thought "That buzzard's breast feathers are very pale and with no dots... perhaps it's a juvenile."

It was only today, on reading that an osprey has been seen at the Arne RSPB site only a mile or so away, which makes me think that that is probably what I saw.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 08 October, 2009, 08:36:57 pm
I think I saw a heron yesterday but it flew away pretty quickly.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 08 October, 2009, 08:39:30 pm
I think I saw a heron yesterday but it flew away pretty quickly.

That would be the turbo version then.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Zoidburg on 09 October, 2009, 05:09:02 pm
I saw the half swan half canada goose hybrid again this afternoon.

Poor fella was all alone, I will have to get a picture, grey beak like a goose, swan shaped but with a dirty snow coluored plumage.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 09 October, 2009, 11:30:31 pm
Got any pictures, Zoiders? I suspect you've got a juvenile swan that has grown to full size but has yet to get an orange bill and the white plumage. They stay grey for quite a while.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Höckerschwan_Cygnus_olor_7b_Richard_Bartz.jpg may help?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 10 October, 2009, 08:27:15 am
I saw the half swan half canada goose hybrid again this afternoon.

Poor fella was all alone, I will have to get a picture, grey beak like a goose, swan shaped but with a dirty snow coluored plumage.


Cygnet? (http://anchor-ramblers.com/USERIMAGES/Mute%20Cygnet%202.jpg)  :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 12 October, 2009, 06:37:07 pm
I saw the heron again today and it was definitely a heron this time, but it still flew away before I could get a pic.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 14 October, 2009, 09:57:11 pm
Two herons having a right barney on the shore outside work. They were making a right vicious-sounding hissing noise at each other whilst fighting.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 17 October, 2009, 11:18:55 am

A water vole beside a fenland drain  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 17 October, 2009, 08:48:06 pm
A Green Woodpecker as we cycled along NCN21 just south of Gatwick.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 October, 2009, 09:21:08 pm
Heard, not seen, last night, as we camped in a field near Woodstock:  At least two, probably three. different types of owl. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 19 October, 2009, 09:08:01 am
First barn owl company of the season this morning. Nice to see she's survived the summer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 19 October, 2009, 05:15:49 pm
Heard, not seen, last night, as we camped in a field near Woodstock:  At least two, probably three. different types of owl. :)
The one going knor, knor, knor was cycleman. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alexb on 19 October, 2009, 10:10:00 pm
OK, so not terribly exciting on the face of it, but I was walking the dog last night and one of our local urban foxes tried to cross the road and had to scarper to avoid a car, he ran between two parked cars to emerge on our side of the road about 6 feet in front of us, face to face with the dog.
Who promptly froze and scarpered behind me.
Fox then adds to her humiliation by deciding to trot past us and into one of the alleyways...

He was a pretty big lad too, glad they were able to be civilized about it!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 19 October, 2009, 10:32:23 pm
When I took the dog out on his late-night walk a few days ago he was slightly ahead of me as we turned a corner and he too came face to face with a fox.

I feel rather fortunate that I didn't have to go to A & E to have my shoulder put back.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: tonycollinet on 19 October, 2009, 11:20:44 pm
Saturday - saw a buzzard on the ground in a field. Not seen that before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 20 October, 2009, 06:41:34 pm
Just got back from a longish walk , saw........

Teddington Lock , half a doz cormorants and a heron
Bushy Park , several heron on different bits of water , red crested pochard , lesser black backed gull , pair of egyptian geese
Hampton Court , kingfisher , another couple of heron , great crested grebe , wagtail of some kind
Ditton , large group of tufted duck , jay
All the way from Hampton Ct to Kingston those irritating ring necked parakeets

plus a selection of the usual park and water birds
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 23 October, 2009, 08:29:34 pm
The first Robin of the season seen at the bird table this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 26 October, 2009, 05:57:35 pm
A dipper and a kingfisher in the River Wey near Bentley. I just happened to have my camera resting on the parapet of the bridge when the unmistakable blue flash appeared.
(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/G11325.jpg)
Can't see it? Look closer, centre foreground.
(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/G11325_kingfisher.jpg)

Oh, and some geese.
(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/G11293.jpg)
(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/G11290.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 26 October, 2009, 06:16:54 pm
Last night, about 9 pm: a fox trotting along the top of a wall in central Reading. It gave us a glance, then carried on as before.

Yesterday afternoon: a fresh-looking dead badger by the side of the road, south Bucks.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 26 October, 2009, 06:30:05 pm
The first Robin of the season seen at the bird table this morning.
Robins are odd birds---both resident and migratory.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 27 October, 2009, 05:34:48 pm
Several times recently I have flogged past the old Seething Wells water works site on the Surbiton/Thames Ditton border and thought 'that looks nice , I realy must have a good look at that place one day'.
Today was that day , and what a delight the place is. It's an unnatural lake which now has reeds growing round the edges. It also has lumps (or rather interesting bits) of concrete and steel railings sticking out of the water , which may sound unattractive but they provide perches for a variety of birds.
I saw three heron , at least half a dozen cormorant (two with their wings held out attractively in the pale low late afternoon sun) , coot , moorhen , tufted duck , lesser black backed gull , and countless black headed gulls , none of which is that unusual for this area.
But what then surprised and delighted me were at least three Little Grebe in winter plumage ( I haven't seen any of these for years)  and the sudden arrival of up to twenty Lapwing which circled around for a bit then came down and stood in a shallow area.

What joy !




 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 28 October, 2009, 11:11:09 am
Dabchicks! Lovely little chaps. And such a quintessentially English name, just like lapwing. I prefer Peewit,though both names say so much more about the bird than green plover.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Luke on 28 October, 2009, 02:07:56 pm
A ladybird!

Only the second one I've seen this year.  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 28 October, 2009, 02:15:30 pm
Joking, surely!  We've had several - including in the house, and a whole colony of them inside the coolbag for the milbottles on the front step ???
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Luke on 28 October, 2009, 02:29:13 pm
Joking, surely!  We've had several - including in the house, and a whole colony of them inside the coolbag for the milbottles on the front step ???

Nope. They seem to have deserted these parts.  :-\

On the plus side, now spotting just one is enough to instantly cheer me up.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 28 October, 2009, 03:26:24 pm
Only the second one I've seen this year.  :(

I'm guessing you weren't in Norfolk this summer then...

BBC - Norfolk - Ladybird swarms invading coast (http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/norfolk/hi/people_and_places/nature/newsid_8185000/8185894.stm)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 28 October, 2009, 03:47:19 pm
Marj has got the spotting scope on a tripod set up in the kitchen to see down the garden.
Seems like she intends to miss nothing/none of our autumn visitors.
I expect the camera will be next with the seeasfarasStoke lens fitted ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 28 October, 2009, 08:07:17 pm
Longtail tits in the garden this morning. First I have seen here for a few years.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 28 October, 2009, 08:56:39 pm
Haven't seen any in our garden since we had the cats, but I used to love watching them when they arrived. They were like a marauding gang.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 October, 2009, 09:09:45 pm
Haven't seen any in our garden since we had the cats, but I used to love watching them when they arrived. They were like a marauding gang.

... of squeaky little balls of fluff with sticky-out tails.   :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 29 October, 2009, 08:30:53 am
I prefer Peewit,though both names say so much more about the bird than green plover.
I hadn't realised just how green they are until I saw them in the pale sunlight on Tuesday afternoon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 October, 2009, 01:47:52 pm
I prefer Peewit,though both names say so much more about the bird than green plover.
I hadn't realised just how green they are until I saw them in the pale sunlight on Tuesday afternoon.

When Mrs. Wow and I were pushing the tandem up Waddington Fell, a lapwing came and flapped around us, presumably because it has its nest nearby. We were both struck by how loud its wingbeats were.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 29 October, 2009, 05:32:07 pm
deer in the field behind our house, lots of them, with the stags making roaring noises.  I guess they're making babies..

and we've heard but not seen a really noisy owl that's taken to sitting on the fencepost in a field opposite the house and shrieking 't'wit, t'woo' at the top of its voice from about 10pm for an hour or so
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 29 October, 2009, 09:44:24 pm
Sounds like two owls are involved. Sadly I can never remember which of the two sounds is the male and which is the female.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 30 October, 2009, 02:42:44 pm
Parakeets over Dorking.

A bunch of ladybirds of all different (FSVO "all") colours basking on a handrail in Redhill.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 October, 2009, 02:46:58 pm
A very large flock of brent geese.

Nutty's parents.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 30 October, 2009, 04:17:29 pm
I went for an off-road roll round Richmond Park (Surrey) and popped in to Isabella Plantation just before leaving. There is a small but rather lovely pond just inside what I consider to be the main entrance to the plantation. The small pond has a large island in it , on to which the water fowl can retire when they have had enough of humans and the food that they bring.
In addition to the expected species I saw a pair of Shoveller , two male (I think) Pintail , half a dozen Shellduck , a similar number of Mandarin (both sexes) a pair of Egyption Geese , a female Red Crested Pochard and a couple of other birds which I am still researching ........

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/98052/91d1b84cb/IMG_2881.jpg)

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/98055/64a20a34d/IMG_2882.jpg)

Any ideas ? The closest match I can find is the Ferruginous Duck
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 30 October, 2009, 04:19:22 pm
A VERY large Peacock (I think - hard to tell from underneath)  butterfly just flew into the window.  Quite the biggest butterfly I've ever seen in this country.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 30 October, 2009, 04:38:23 pm
A very close (<10m away) view of a kingfisher sat on a post by a pond (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=362140&y=178965&z=115&sv=362140,178965&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=544&ax=362140&ay=178965&lm=0) in N Bristol, on my lunchtime 'get out of the office before I go mad' stroll. It flew off to a tree, then came back to the same post for another 30s before finally departing.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 01 November, 2009, 03:20:09 am
A good sized goanna sunning itself on the road. When I slowed it ran the wrong way (back in front of the car) - luckily the brakes are good so it got away.  No time for a picture though!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 02 November, 2009, 09:45:59 am
Snakehips, looks like a ferruginous duck (female that is) to me, but the head is a little too rounded. May be a hybrid, but FD is still best bet there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 02 November, 2009, 02:50:16 pm
A bird of prey of some sort flying at 90* to traffic flow across the M53 just south of J4 (on the Wirral).The wing tips & colouring were definately those of some sort of hawk.
Despite it's low altitude I couldn't identify it further 'cause both of us were travelling at a rapid rate.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 02 November, 2009, 09:28:54 pm
flap-flap-glide style of flying or glide?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: alan on 02 November, 2009, 10:07:00 pm
flap-flap-glide style of flying or glide?
flipflap
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 02 November, 2009, 10:28:52 pm
At Two Tree Island:-

thousands of knots
hundreds of avocets, dunlin, lapwings
lots of redshank, shovelers, teal, wigeon
about 20 golden plovers
several little ringed plovers
a little egret
a few black-tailed godwit
about 8 greenshank
quite a few grey plovers

and probably a few odds and sods that I've forgotten about.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 03 November, 2009, 04:02:51 pm
flap-flap-glide style of flying or glide?
flipflap
Well,the most common hawk would be a sparrowhawk, which has a long tail, rounded wingtips and a very characteristic flight where it beats its wings two or three times then glides, then repeats (flap flap glide)
A kestrel (pointed wings, but can look rounder at times) has a fluttering series of rapid wing beats in horizontal flight. A buzzard (short tail) tends to have a set of three or four rapid and shallow wingbeats followed by long glides.
Kites will show lots of tail twisting. A goshawk, if you are really,really lucky just looks like pure power. Deep body, strong flight, very purposeful and direct.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 08 November, 2009, 09:56:36 pm
Yesterday: 5 seals, a heron anna deer.
Today, more herons, a deer, some kestrels anna bloody huge great sea eagle! (called 'Ralf (http://www.pressandjournal.co.uk/Article.aspx/1443920?UserKey=)' apparently)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 08 November, 2009, 10:14:03 pm
Yesterday on the Transporter 200: a close-up heron on the Newport levels, and an overhead shouty kite at Dyfennog, near Sennybridge, in the Brecon Beacons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 10 November, 2009, 03:51:25 am
on the 400 on sunday - 2 crows harrying a fox
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 11 November, 2009, 06:36:44 pm
Two roe deer just ahead of us, scrambling through a hedge to get off the road when they heard us coming. About half a mile south of the M4 south of Reading. Got to within 10 yards of 'em.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 11 November, 2009, 08:10:46 pm
Someone out walking a blue poodle this morning.  I have my suspicions that the colour wasn't entirely natural. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 15 November, 2009, 03:20:48 pm
Netted quite a haul at Musselburgh today.  Star billing was a Wilson's phalarope but also snow bunting, red throated diver, slavonian grebe, velvet scoter, long tailed duck, great crested grebe, red breasted merganser, goosander, goldeneye, wigeon, teal, curlew, oystercatcher, redshank, cormorant and shag to name but some !
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 15 November, 2009, 10:26:32 pm
Damn.  I *need* Wilson's phal. (in this country) ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 16 November, 2009, 07:44:18 am
It's been there for a few days.  There are several photies of it on The SOC: Bird photos (http://www.the-soc.org.uk/photos-2009-autumn.htm)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 17 November, 2009, 09:11:56 pm
Well, yesterday actually. A fox, sat just outside the entrance to Ebbsfleet International Station at about 9.15pm. Didn't seem to mind the people wandering past it. Looked perfectly healthy - good condition actually. Got up after a bit, walked about and sat back down again.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 17 November, 2009, 09:18:09 pm
Quite mundane, but a sight that always lifts my heart.  This morning, I saw a pied wagtail at Figges Marsh.  It was a bit hidden in the grass, but just lifted up & away in it's typical swooping flight as I went past, so I got a perfect view of it's back as it flew off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 18 November, 2009, 10:22:20 pm
On my way home yesterday I saw a pheasant stotting around in the grass.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 27 November, 2009, 02:34:09 pm
Seen yesterday on Wandsworth Common, a really beautiful Great Spotted Woodpecker. A few hours later there were 2 long tailed tits in almost the same place. It was lovely :D.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 01 December, 2009, 12:13:16 pm
The 'claimed' 900 lumens of retina searing power of my bike light were enough to
stop a Muntjac deer briefly enough for me to get within 20ft of it.

I'd heard tales of them being around here right inside this urban vicinity, never thought I'd see
one of these elusive and shy little fellas though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 01 December, 2009, 03:46:55 pm
The 'claimed' 900 lumens of retina searing power of my bike light were enough to
stop a Muntjac deer briefly enough for me to get within 20ft of it.

I'd heard tales of them being around here right inside this urban vicinity, never thought I'd see
one of these elusive and shy little fellas though.
See 'em often here in inner Reading. There are a few living in the cemetery at Cemetery Junction. Give them remains of salad sometimes. They seem to be very fond of lettuce. Pretty used to people, but won't let you get very close.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 02 December, 2009, 08:51:55 am
Pretty used to people, but won't let you get very close.

One of the little buggers was sleeping on my doorstep the other week. We have a glass front door, I couldn't believe the cheek of it. When she saw me trying to get my camera out, she ran off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 02 December, 2009, 05:43:31 pm
A pregnant (or very fat) muntjac in the office grounds....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: FatBloke on 02 December, 2009, 06:55:17 pm
Badger crossing my road! Chased him up the road where he turned right then along a fence beside the footpath until he managed to escape under the fence and into the golf course.

I like badgers, me!!!   (http://smiley.onegreatguy.net/badger.gif)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 07 December, 2009, 02:08:18 pm
2 nuthatches in a tree by the cafe in Oaks Park. That cafe is always a good birdwatching spot :D.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 07 December, 2009, 02:51:22 pm
A mundane bird, but a pretty one - a magpie that walked past just outside the window of the cafe.  Very close, with the iridescence of the feathers clearly visible, the colours changing as the bird ambled by.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 07 December, 2009, 03:57:25 pm
About 4:30 the other morning. A very large very fat badger ambling down the road. He wasn't to be hurried. Made my morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 07 December, 2009, 07:16:25 pm
A family walking with an adult dog and two teeny tiny little puppies, smaller than big guinea pigs. They might have been Jack Russell puppies or some sort of terrier. The puppies were a bit all over the place so I decided to stop until they were past. They stopped for a sniff and explore of the bike and my right foot - one of them had to stand on his hing legs to sniff my trouser band! I'm not really that fussed about animals, particularly not dogs and especially particularly not little dogs, but the puppies were just so cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 08 December, 2009, 08:13:58 am
Seen on Sunday. Perigrine falcon on Brighton beach swooping down to plow through a swarm(?) of Starlings. Smashing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 08 December, 2009, 01:41:39 pm
A mundane bird, but a pretty one - a magpie that walked past just outside the window of the cafe.  Very close, with the iridescence of the feathers clearly visible, the colours changing as the bird ambled by.

(http://farm1.static.flickr.com/74/176467251_2a6da9cace_b.jpg)

Seen in the right light, magpies are incredibly coloured birds, one of my favourites.  Like mallard ducks I think their ubiquity can blind us to how deceptively attractive their colours are.

(I didn't kill the bird for the photo)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 08 December, 2009, 02:23:49 pm
Exactly.  I can still remember my excitement as a kid the first time that I noticed a 'black & white' magpie could be blue.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 08 December, 2009, 02:33:27 pm
When my father was growing up, in one of the places where he lived, a lot of the land had been stolen generations ago was owned by the Duke of Buccleuch – my dad always marvelled at the sight of a magpie, thinking it the rarest of birds.  This was because the Duke’s gamies would blast the crap out of any magpie they saw.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 08 December, 2009, 02:41:21 pm
:hand:  Those gamekeepers are experts in wildlife conservation, don't you know?  I read it in a BASC press release, so it must be true ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 08 December, 2009, 03:35:50 pm
Magpies definitely rule the roost around here. Replacing all the sparrows and starlings which used to be the most common.
I too also like their iridescent colouring when the sunlight catches them, but f**kin' hate their non-stop Kalashnikov calling at dawn.

Although it doesn't even come close to the iridescence of a kingfisher which happily
 now are becoming a more familiar sight around here.  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 09 December, 2009, 09:03:19 pm
:hand:  Those gamekeepers are experts in wildlife conservation, don't you know?  I read it in a BASC press release, so it must be true ;)

Self-styled "guardians of the countryside" :-\.    What the countryside probably needs is fewer guardians and more Guardianistas ...  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 09 December, 2009, 09:48:27 pm
:thumbsup: ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 14 December, 2009, 12:37:29 pm
Well, yesterday actually. A fox, sat just outside the entrance to Ebbsfleet International Station at about 9.15pm. Didn't seem to mind the people wandering past it. Looked perfectly healthy - good condition actually. Got up after a bit, walked about and sat back down again.

There was a photo on the BBC London news the other day of a fox on the escalator at Walthamstow Central station (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1233831/The-Lon-den-Underground-The-urban-fox-takes-escalator-Tube-station.html).  I think he was prevented from boarding a Victoria Line train to Brixton for not having a valid ticket.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 15 December, 2009, 08:32:42 am

There was a photo on the BBC London news the other day of a fox on the escalator at Walthamstow Central station (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1233831/The-Lon-den-Underground-The-urban-fox-takes-escalator-Tube-station.html).  I think he was prevented from boarding a Victoria Line train to Brixton for not having a valid ticket.
Twenty or so years ago I used Walthamstow Station a lot. I often saw a  guy who had a pet fox and carried it on his shoulder (yes I am sure it was alive , and not one of those things that some women used to wear round their necks).
Presumably the fox does not require a ticket if being carried.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28169/52eadfed3/regards.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28170/346c719a5/from.jpg)(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/28171/5eb32df38/snakehips.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 15 December, 2009, 11:15:27 am
Um, not today.  Well, yes, today, but in a different way.

Today as I crossed Figges Marsh, I was joined by a pied wagtail that flew beside me, banking and weaving away & back as it conducted its stalling flight.

But last week, I disturbed a pair, and they flew ahead of me, an escort of synchronised swooping. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 16 December, 2009, 12:23:00 pm
I've been house bound with a cold for the past few days so wasn't expecting to see anything to merit a posting here.  That was until a buzzard glided into view from the sitting room window this morning.  In 10 years here that's only the second one I've seen from the house.  But given that we're, as the corvid/buzzard flies, only 2 miles from Embra city centre that's not bad.  :) 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 16 December, 2009, 12:34:34 pm
The birds are hungry. My bird feeders are being mobbed. I think I have to go outside & refill the most popular one, that all the finches go for. It looks almost empty.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 16 December, 2009, 07:50:11 pm
The birds are hungry. My bird feeders are being mobbed. I think I have to go outside & refill the most popular one, that all the finches go for. It looks almost empty.

Hehe. We have a bird table outside the kitchen window, beside a Hawthorn hedge. A Robin owns it. He's a bloody bully - and chases off everything. He has three fat balls and a heap of seed all to himself.

He watches me through the window as I make tea.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 December, 2009, 03:50:38 pm
The birds are hungry. My bird feeders are being mobbed. I think I have to go outside & refill the most popular one, that all the finches go for. It looks almost empty.

I'm having to fill ours 2-3 times per day at the moment, and they're big feeders.   They're covered in birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nobby on 17 December, 2009, 05:08:25 pm
My wren is back. Haven't seen him for a few weeks.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: scott on 17 December, 2009, 05:52:43 pm
He's a bloody bully .... He has three fat balls

clearly too much testosterone

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 20 December, 2009, 04:36:25 am
Seen yesterday (location rural New South Wales - Audax 300)
Big black snake (2 metres long) crossing the road 
lots and lots of birds including many lorikeets and rosellas
cattle grazing along the roadsides because of the drought (accompanied by stockmen on horses and dogs)
3 wallabies
2 foxes
many rabbits
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 20 December, 2009, 08:24:56 am
A barn owl flying over our garden this morning. Beautiful against the snow.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 20 December, 2009, 09:40:57 am
A barn owl flying over our garden this morning. Beautiful against the snow.

I am so envious !  One of my favourite birds but I haven't seen one for decades  :( Now in the space of two days both you and Chris S describe seeing them over your gardens !
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bluebottle on 20 December, 2009, 09:45:36 am
At work yesterday I managed to get within 10 feet of a snipe (quite sure it wasn't a woodcock - couldn't quite make out any bars on the nape) sitting on concrete in a corner of the work car park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 20 December, 2009, 12:18:25 pm
A barn owl flying over our garden this morning. Beautiful against the snow.

I am so envious !  One of my favourite birds but I haven't seen one for decades  :( Now in the space of two days both you and Chris S describe seeing them over your gardens !

Well it's not that surprising here, we are lucky as there are several pairs round the village. They hunt in the field opposite my house and roost in the tee. In the summer they tend to fly up behind me when I'm walking home from the pub then scare the hell out of me by shrieking.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 20 December, 2009, 01:16:43 pm
I've been house bound with a cold for the past few days so wasn't expecting to see anything to merit a posting here.  That was until a buzzard glided into view from the sitting room window this morning.  In 10 years here that's only the second one I've seen from the house.  But given that we're, as the corvid/buzzard flies, only 2 miles from Embra city centre that's not bad.  :) 

I've seen a buzzard flying over our garden and we're close the centre of Aberdeen
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 20 December, 2009, 05:18:57 pm
Just a gentle walk from the house today, lots of robins, blackbirds and wrens, another buzzard, and a small group of fieldfares.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 20 December, 2009, 05:20:38 pm
Heron standing on the bank of  the small brook.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 December, 2009, 01:01:46 pm
We had a good view of a nuthatch in Hockley Woods this morning. We heard it before we saw it and it was the unfamiliar call that made us look a little harder.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 23 December, 2009, 08:08:30 pm
A flock of what I think may have been redwings, stripping a couple of bushes of berries this morning.

And then some more (or the same lot?) about half a mile away this afternoon, stripping some trees.

Two weeks ago, those trees were rather colourful. Hardly a berry left now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bluebottle on 23 December, 2009, 08:39:27 pm
Redwings! Lovely wee things.  Saw a few of them feeding on cotoneaster berries up Balgay Hill today.  Also on the list:

Mistle thrush
Blackies
Chaffinches
Corbies
Greylag geese
Goldcrests
Blue Tit
Great Tit
Buzzard
Woodcock!
Sparrowhawk

Never known a woodcock to be up Balgay before but it was very close quarters and corroborated by a fellow twitcher. Seems to be the season for that sort of thing!  Siskins also heard, but not seen. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 23 December, 2009, 11:26:35 pm
A moorhen sitting on the wall outside the kitchen, boggling at me through the window. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 25 December, 2009, 11:04:17 am
I've been house bound with a cold for the past few days so wasn't expecting to see anything to merit a posting here.  That was until a buzzard glided into view from the sitting room window this morning.  In 10 years here that's only the second one I've seen from the house.  But given that we're, as the corvid/buzzard flies, only 2 miles from Embra city centre that's not bad.  :)  


I've seen a buzzard flying over our garden and we're close the centre of Aberdeen
I too saw a buzzard flying over our garden yesterday, getting 'mobbed' by a singular corvid.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 25 December, 2009, 07:06:03 pm
A jay. A woodpecker (heard, not seen). And some very hungry ducks on the frozen lake at Reading University, who mobbed us when they realised we had food.

And an igloo.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 25 December, 2009, 10:23:05 pm
A small flock of Long-tailed Tits worked their way across my back garden several times in a most pleasing manner this morning.

Snake


 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 26 December, 2009, 03:52:16 pm
We've just come across a little group of l-t tits too, in one of the gardens up the road.  They really are the most delightful little creatures.   :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 26 December, 2009, 04:00:38 pm
A couple of green woodpeckers, one greater spotted, a redshank and lots of geese: mostly grey lag, lots of Canada geese, and one snow goose! Very pleased about this last. I've only ever seen one before, and that was fleeting. Today's sighting was from quite close quarters. It was grazing with hundreds of grey lag geese. I could see its black wing tips very clearly as well as the brilliant whiteness of its plumage.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 28 December, 2009, 12:29:43 pm
A first for us today.  Male pheasant on the garden fence.  They're quite common round here (lots of 'shoots'), but it's the first time we've ever seen one actually in the garden.  Mrs C got a picture, but it had, of course, moved before I could get the big camera ready.

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 December, 2009, 04:33:06 pm
A walk from Gullane Beach to the Aberlady reserve today.  Saw hundreds of fieldfare, and what I think was a tawny owl hunting in broad daylight.  (Never seen that before).  Also roe deer, redwings, wigeon, eider, turnstone, oystercatcher and redshank.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 28 December, 2009, 06:13:27 pm
Just remembered from Boxing day, in fields beside Brechin, hundreds of geese being watched by a buzzard sat on a fence post.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 28 December, 2009, 07:18:02 pm
A couple of green woodpeckers, one greater spotted, a redshank and lots of geese: mostly grey lag, lots of Canada geese, and one snow goose! Very pleased about this last. I've only ever seen one before, and that was fleeting. Today's sighting was from quite close quarters. It was grazing with hundreds of grey lag geese. I could see its black wing tips very clearly as well as the brilliant whiteness of its plumage.
Only ever had snow geese in Iceland! Usual front window stuff at the moment with flocks of long tailed tits working through, and a nice female great spotted woodpecker yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Noodley on 28 December, 2009, 09:43:19 pm
A blue tit hitting our utility room window.  Followed by a Sparrowhawk trying to grab it off the window sill where it was holding on....the Sparrowhawk could not get to it due to being too large.

Mrs Noodley 'rescued' the blue tit and put it in a box, thinking it would die as it was in a bad way.  A few hours later she went back to find it totally revived and released it  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 29 December, 2009, 10:49:56 pm
Not very exotically, from my parents dining room in the rain, I saw these two, amongst others.

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/ParentsSeagull2_Thumb512.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/ParentsSeagull2.jpg)

The seagulls do manage to land in the garden, just.  There wingspan is so big that they can only just land and take off, but they do frequently check back to see if there is anything that they can nab from the stuff my Mum's put out for the garden birds.

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/ParentsDove1_Thumb512.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/ParentsDove1.jpg)

We're not 100% sure what sort of Dove this is, although after hunting through the RSPBs website, and Wikipedia, I reckon it's a Eurasian Collared Dove, which explains why it isn't in my Dad's Observer book of birds, since it was published before that species of Dove was seen in the British Isles.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 29 December, 2009, 11:20:24 pm
It looks like a collared dove to me.
We saw a Female Great Spotted Woodpecker in the tree in our back garden. Also a flock of medium sized brown birds but we couldn't really see enough detail to identify them accurately. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 December, 2009, 11:25:02 pm
It looks like a collared dove to me.

def. a collared dove. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 30 December, 2009, 12:00:55 am
It looks like a collared dove to me.

def. a collared dove. 

An ex twitcher friend has given up on caring about pigeons and their ilk, is a dove a pigeon?

I did see my second bullfinch a couple of days ago. He was sat next to a very colourful Chaffinch and I thought it was a pair of them at first. Very bonny. It made me realise how few birds I get to see.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 30 December, 2009, 02:03:26 am
An ex twitcher friend has given up on caring about pigeons and their ilk, is a dove a pigeon?
Doves are the same family as pigeons.
On the whole, the bigger species are called pigeons and the smaller are called doves.

It's not a solid distinction though. For example the wild version of the Trafalgar Square type domestic pigeon is a rock dove.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 December, 2009, 08:49:18 am
The wood pigeon is also known as a ring dove.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 30 December, 2009, 01:24:51 pm
A first for our area (well, spotted by me anyway) - a flock of fieldfares  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 31 December, 2009, 04:23:32 pm
Red kite flying low over the M4 near Membury.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 31 December, 2009, 04:58:01 pm
A first for our area (well, spotted by me anyway) - a flock of fieldfares  :thumbsup:

Back again today - counted over 30 in the flock.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 31 December, 2009, 05:01:13 pm
Red kite flying low over the M4 near Membury.

There's a pair nesting close to there.  We used to live just down the valley, and often saw them over the garden or in the fields around the village.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 01 January, 2010, 05:23:29 pm
A first for our area (well, spotted by me anyway) - a flock of fieldfares  :thumbsup:

Back again today - counted over 30 in the flock.

We've not managed a flock, but we've had a regular visitor in the last few days.

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4038/4233744108_f7131f3d66.jpg)

T'was an odd day for birds altogether. Apart from our usual suspects (pigeons, crows, magpies, blue tits, collared doves, spuggies, blackbirds and robins) we had a couple of bullfinches and a great spotted woodpecker...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 01 January, 2010, 07:39:17 pm
Two deer somewhere near Shere.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 03 January, 2010, 03:37:01 am
On the 200 yesterday it rained and rained (very welcome but not great for riding).  The wallabies at the first control  seemed to take it in stride though!  4 wary but not overly concerned.

(http://i787.photobucket.com/albums/yy155/sandyvigar/BingaraandBeyondWallabies2020110.jpg)


(http://i787.photobucket.com/albums/yy155/sandyvigar/BingaraandBeyondWallabies3020110.jpg)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rapples on 03 January, 2010, 07:48:45 am
On the 200 yesterday it rained and rained (very welcome but not great for riding).  The wallabies at the first control  seemed to take it in stride though!  

That's impressive, I suppose they never lose their brevet card stamps, and can keep them dry in the rain ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 03 January, 2010, 02:19:42 pm
Just back from Hogmanay in Dumfries & Galloway - highlights were hen harriers (2), twite, and tree sparrows.  And of course thousands of barnacle geese and the odd red squirrel.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 03 January, 2010, 10:57:36 pm
On the 200 yesterday it rained and rained (very welcome but not great for riding).  The wallabies at the first control  seemed to take it in stride though!  

That's impressive, I suppose they never lose their brevet card stamps, and can keep them dry in the rain ;)
[/ quote]

 ;D

 ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 January, 2010, 09:56:50 am
Hey, Sandy, I didn't know you were riding in Derbyshire! ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 04 January, 2010, 10:10:49 am
 ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 04 January, 2010, 02:09:02 pm
One huge fox - easily the biggest I've ever seen.  He must have been hungry cos he was hunting in clear daylight and didn't back off very quickly at all.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: docsquid on 04 January, 2010, 04:48:17 pm
Bullfinches at our woods.  Never been seen there before.  Can't actually think why they are there as the berries have all gone from the berry-bearing trees (holly and hawthorn).  Nice to see though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 04 January, 2010, 05:21:34 pm
Hey, Sandy, I didn't know you were riding in Derbyshire! ;D

It doesn't necessarily have to have been in Derbyshire, it could have been Loch Lomond, or even further south, around Horley (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=17735.msg318863#msg318863), possibly, although Tim may have been describing some in a Zoo.

Apparently they are sometimes seen at another location, rather a lot further south than that. :-\ ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 January, 2010, 06:50:42 pm
Visit Whipsnade Zoo, & you find wallabies roaming free. Some escaped many years ago, but it seems they had the wit to realise that the environs of the zoo were a wallaby-friendly zone, so hung around.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 04 January, 2010, 07:28:38 pm
In the Pentlands today - a dipper, a buzzard, quite a few red grouse, and a woodcock
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: dasmoth on 04 January, 2010, 07:45:51 pm
A fox, crossing the A10 just north of town.  At first, I thought it was a large cat.  Then the lights of an approaching car silhouetted his brush, and there could be no mistake.

I knew there were foxes in the area, but it's the first time I've seen a live one there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 04 January, 2010, 09:41:38 pm
On a walk yesterday

Mallard
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2673/4240423885_ba850f3bde.jpg)

Canada Goose
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2700/4241198370_9d92cd6ffb.jpg)

Coot
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2701/4240424437_1f90ea705e.jpg)

Pheasant
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4055/4241199398_b841f9aa1e.jpg)

Lapwing
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2768/4241199578_38d4cef06c.jpg)

Long-Tailed Tit
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4019/4240427707_238f1e6fb2.jpg)

Juvenile Cormorant
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2738/4240428525_07029811f3.jpg)

All within Edinburgh city...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 04 January, 2010, 11:15:35 pm
On a walk yesterday

Mallard
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2673/4240423885_ba850f3bde.jpg)

Duck!


(Cracker of a photie, btw  :thumbsup:)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 05 January, 2010, 01:44:52 pm
Yesterday, my first little egret of the year.
Flying over my house and seen from my armchair!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 05 January, 2010, 01:57:53 pm
This morning a barn owl flying down a snow laden avenue of trees - magical. And on the way back from taking Mrs Pcolbeck to work about a thousand pigeons all in one field.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 07 January, 2010, 06:38:21 pm
I will try and get some pics up, but owl traces in the snow. Rodent run......big hole and wing and tail imprints. Will try and stick some pics up.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 07 January, 2010, 09:56:38 pm
Looked out of my window about five minutes ago and saw two foxes motionless at the end of my lawn , rear to rear , in what must have been the post-coital configuration.

I took a couple of flash photos , opened the door , took a couple more shots and they didn't move. They only went off when I tried to get closer to them.

Unfortunately my efforts yielded nothing in the way of visual evidence.

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 07 January, 2010, 11:23:03 pm
Vulpine voyeurism!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 08 January, 2010, 03:31:27 pm
Parakeet as I cycled to work.  And I wasn't even in Richmond Park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 08 January, 2010, 03:49:20 pm
Parakeet as I cycled to work.  And I wasn't even in Richmond Park.

They are all over the place (http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/nature/invasion-of-the-parakeets-441304.html) these days. They are quite common round here and I have heard them as far in as The Kennington Road as I go to and from.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 08 January, 2010, 03:50:26 pm
Superstoker is a bit fed up of their screeching in the back garden waking him up.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 08 January, 2010, 03:58:22 pm
Parakeet as I cycled to work.  And I wasn't even in Richmond Park.

They are all over the place (http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/nature/invasion-of-the-parakeets-441304.html) these days. They are quite common round here and I have heard them as far in as The Kennington Road as I go to and from.



Might be a few less after this winter I would think.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 08 January, 2010, 05:49:26 pm
Finally got a clear sight of the handful of newcomers to the locality and identified them as Redwings.
Took a stroll by the Thames and saw a flotilla of up to 40 Tufted Duck (all male) on the river , and a Heron sitting in a Weeping Willow.

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 08 January, 2010, 06:19:41 pm
I saw a fair few redwings today. Also, a cormorant which had abandoned the estuary and taken up on a small freshwater creek. Oh, a solitary mute swan flying about in a snowstorm. It looked lost.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 09 January, 2010, 03:00:41 pm
I took a stroll along the Thames to Seething Wells on the Surbiton / Ditton border. Unfortunately it wasn't even remotely seething , being almost completely frozen over.

Most of the birds I saw on my last visit had gone , but about 50 Lapwing were standing around resolutely on the ice sheltering from the Northerly wind. One Heron remained to keep an eye on the one patch of unfrozen water.

The ice surface was marked by animal (presumably fox) tracks.

The highlight of my walk however was the male Pochard that I saw on the river in Kingston just where the Hogsmill joins the Thames.

Snake

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/117711/3f79e8714/PochardC.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 09 January, 2010, 04:33:27 pm
Topped up the bird feeders with high energy grub today. They're queuing up. Replaced the ice in the water dish with warm water as soon as I was up. Everything that isn't flowing is frozen.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 09 January, 2010, 08:13:25 pm
Now getting redwings and fieldfares mixing it with the long tailed tits outside my window.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 09 January, 2010, 09:36:11 pm
A wren in the back yard, after the food which is somewhere under all that snow:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4026/4260547570_c8d081e529_o.jpg)

I also saw a couple of moorhens duck walking at the local (frozen) pond :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Dinamo on 10 January, 2010, 11:56:34 am
A Fieldfare has been taking refuge in our back garden for the last couple of days.
Feeding on berries and taking shelter under our fir trees.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 10 January, 2010, 04:42:49 pm
A couple of Fieldfares have been hiding amongst the Starlings over the last few days. On our walk today we saw masses of bunny rabbit tracks and other unidentifiable marks in the snow. I should never have thrown away those Tuff Wayfinder shoes.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 10 January, 2010, 06:57:42 pm
. I should never have thrown away those Tuff Wayfinder shoes.  ;D

I think I remember those !  Were they the ones with the compass in the heel ?  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 10 January, 2010, 08:37:59 pm
. I should never have thrown away those Tuff Wayfinder shoes.  ;D

I think I remember those !  Were they the ones with the compass in the heel ?  :)

The very same.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 11 January, 2010, 09:52:32 pm
Standing outside the back door at 0700 - a fox ran ran up to me, failing to see me, and only stopped when he was almost at my feet. No idea where he thought he was going - if I hadn't been there I'm sure he'd have run in to my kitchen.

Also seen in garden lately: boisterous parakeets.

This is in TW9: the wilds of, er, North Sheen  :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 11 January, 2010, 09:57:05 pm
It was yesterday, but to my utter delight and astonishment, I saw a pair of Otters frolicking in the Tees. Otters, in the Tees!  Darlo has otters :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 January, 2010, 10:35:58 pm
That's still an unfulfilled ambition of mine: to see a wild otter.

There was a piece on the BBC website the other week about a pair of dead otters found in an illegal crafish trap on the river Wid, between Chelmsford and Billericay.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 11 January, 2010, 11:14:21 pm
That's still an unfulfilled ambition of mine: to see a wild otter.

I've seen them in the US, but never here.  I'd love to.  They had them (apparently) on the lower reaches of the River Lambourn
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 12 January, 2010, 07:05:30 am
That's still an unfulfilled ambition of mine: to see a wild otter.

We've seen several whilst touring in the Western Isles.  Our best spot was on Jura when one was busy catching his/her lunch in front of us while we sat eating ours.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 12 January, 2010, 09:00:04 am
Most of a Peregrine, chomping on something, about 1 foot away from my feet, for several minutes.  In fact it’s still there.

To explain, I work on the 15th floor of a 16 floor building and we are regularly privileged to see a peregrine, sometimes two, swooping round the building.  At the moment it is perched below my window and I can only just see it by pressing my forehead against the window and looking down, seeing its body lengthwise, its head busily working away at a dead something, probably a pigeon.  It was the flying feathers that alerted me to it.  Thaty was 10 minutes ago and it is still there.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 12 January, 2010, 02:48:35 pm
(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2734/4262429317_3bc7072132.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4040/4263175460_42e9e475d5.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4029/4262422395_18315ca39d.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 12 January, 2010, 02:58:50 pm
I like to see coots out of the water. Just to look at their really weird looking feet.  ;D
I'm sure they're a Friday afternoon rush job by Mother Nature.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 12 January, 2010, 03:05:25 pm
I like to see coots out of the water. Just to look at their really weird looking feet.  ;D
I'm sure they're a Friday afternoon rush job by Mother Nature.

They're also a good bet for the Ministry of Silly Walks

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4018/4262424421_1565dbceaa.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 12 January, 2010, 04:17:30 pm
I like to see coots out of the water. Just to look at their really weird looking feet.  ;D
I'm sure they're a Friday afternoon rush job by Mother Nature.

we have teenage moorhens in our pond, and in the cold weather they've been coming round to the house to eat the birdfood.  They're really funny, and their tracks in he sno are great :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 12 January, 2010, 08:24:37 pm
(http://img189.imageshack.us/img189/1011/owlrodent.jpg)

One of three spots where Mr Rodent met Mr Owl


















Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 12 January, 2010, 08:28:15 pm
Great photo Tony !

It's been noticeable how many bloody splodges there are on the snow in and around the woods.  Predator heaven...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 13 January, 2010, 11:40:39 am
Fox has just strolled down the street.  We saw one down nearer the town earlier (next to the cemetery).  And I saw a porky one last night near Trinity Church Square near Elephant & Castle last night.  Not at all bothered by the few people around.  I suspect the Southwark Hunt haven't been active lately.

Yesterday morning, as I passed the pond, I saw the heron sat on the edge of the road, so I passed within a metre of it.  Cool.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 13 January, 2010, 10:24:02 pm
Two Redwings in a tree on our street, looking all dumpy and fluffed up :D.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 14 January, 2010, 06:51:43 pm
Lots of redwings in the Meadows today
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 15 January, 2010, 03:38:46 pm
The foxes have been out and about in some numbers around Larrington Towers recently.  I've seen them while both on the way to work and coming home.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 15 January, 2010, 03:44:53 pm
A rather nice cock pheasant in our garden just now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 15 January, 2010, 03:48:03 pm
Cormorants.

I saw three of them in the park a few days ago, coinciding with the cold weather. I had never seen any in the park previously. This morning there were five, four at the top of a tall sycamore, the other one fishing. I didn't see it catch anything, but the lake has loads of roach and rudd in it normally, so I don't think the anglers will take too kindly to the cormorants' presence.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 15 January, 2010, 03:49:27 pm
Great photo Tony !



+1

Nicely spotted.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 15 January, 2010, 04:54:20 pm
A couple of tits.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Deano on 15 January, 2010, 10:31:19 pm
That's still an unfulfilled ambition of mine: to see a wild otter.

There was a piece on the BBC website the other week about a pair of dead otters found in an illegal crafish trap on the river Wid, between Chelmsford and Billericay.

I've spoken to a friend who works at the municipal golf course, and apparently the otters have been resident in Darlo for a couple of years, and he used to see them regularly on summer mornings.  The git never mentioned them to me >:(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 16 January, 2010, 04:43:41 pm
A small group of long tailed tits flitting about at the back of the house.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 17 January, 2010, 08:29:48 am
Great photo Tony !



+1

Nicely spotted.
I will tray and get some of the other shots up
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 17 January, 2010, 05:22:19 pm
A walk along the East Lothian coast today east from Gullane, where several hundred fieldfare are still munching their way through all the buckthorn berries.  On the water eider and long tailed duck.  On the shore bar tailed godwits, grey plover, rock pipts, oystercatcher, turnstone, redshank, and (I think) dunlin.  Further inland several good views of roe deer and a small flock of pink footed geese. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 January, 2010, 05:45:49 pm
A buzzard doing a very good kestrel impersonation, hovering by beating against the wind, above Wolesnewton.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 17 January, 2010, 10:47:24 pm
The FNRTTC wallabies. And the lesser spotted (in fact completely spotless) Knee Bandage.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 January, 2010, 11:08:28 pm
Yesterday and all last week, Alpine choughs and snow buntings :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 18 January, 2010, 09:08:05 am
Seagulls, lots of 'em, although I'm about fifty miles inland.  The flood plain at the bottom of the garden has flooded and they're all swimming about.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 January, 2010, 09:35:56 am
Some lots of birds in East Anglia.  Singing, flying about, & just generally enjoying the mildness of yesterday in the sunshine.  I'll need to work out what they all were later on :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ray 6701 on 18 January, 2010, 01:53:06 pm
3 birds of prey on my ride yesterday.  2 Buzzards, one flew overhead near to Catton Hall & 1 was hovering looking for food in a field between Orton on the hill & Austrey.  The other bird was perched in a tree near the river trent at Alrewas but not being much of a birder (something I'm trying to rectify) I do not know what it was  :(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mattc on 18 January, 2010, 02:07:56 pm
For cute small mammal fans:

Photo of the Day: Best of August 2009, Photo Gallery - National Geographic (http://photography.nationalgeographic.com/photography/photos/best-pod-august-09/#4549_600x450.jpg)

In the wrong thread entirely, but I didn't want to start a new one, and hopefully someone will appreciate this!

[Oh OK: I saw about 8 red Kites in 4 miles this morning, including two feasting on some roadkill - they scarpered only just in time to avoid a talon/car-roof interface. Fantastic sight.]
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 January, 2010, 05:03:37 pm
Snowdrops in flower (just) outside Grosmont, and a Hazel hedge in bud.  Spring is sprung :)

(more sno forecast for that area tonight & tomorrow though)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: redshift on 23 January, 2010, 10:24:08 pm
Out for a walk, and testing the new K20D:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4020/4298880200_2e602f8bd6.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/27345381@N03/4298880200/)

I think I like my new camera.  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 23 January, 2010, 11:06:34 pm
Lambs!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 24 January, 2010, 07:51:00 pm
Cormorants. At least 4. Three in sight at once at one point, two perched on a dead tree, one swimming in the river.

On the Thames just downriver of Kennetmouth.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 24 January, 2010, 08:12:05 pm
I saw a pair of cormorants today on the River Wandle and an egret
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 25 January, 2010, 02:05:41 pm
Snow Buntings up at the Cairngorm Ski Centre

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4019/4300779812_ed423e3ab1.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4061/4300031591_1b5c4cb990.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 25 January, 2010, 02:11:38 pm


(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4061/4300031591_1b5c4cb990.jpg)

Snacking between meals... I dunno.





I've seen a heron in the brook.
They're getting a familiar sight now though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 26 January, 2010, 02:17:42 pm
I saw a pair of kites circling over the woods at the top of Heath House today.
Actually I think they knew how close to death I was as I grovelled to the top of the hill & were doing their impression of a vulture.I had not,at that time,shovelled my heart & lungs back into my chest cavity so I probably did resemble a carcass.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 26 January, 2010, 03:04:24 pm
Lots of urban foxes last night on the way home, more than I think I've ever seen on my commute before, although that was later than usual for my commute on a Monday, after midnight.  I didn't actually count them, but I saw well over a dozen, whilst not making the slightest attempt to look for them, so most of these were crossing roads or very close to them (in fact since I've got a bit of a stye in one eye, I was watching for traffic more than normal to compensate for poorer vision).

It may have just been that I was out when few humans were about, but I believe that this is the breeding season for your bog standard red fox.   I suspect given that it was relatively mild and dry a few more than usual would have been out on the pull. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 26 January, 2010, 04:12:11 pm
I saw a fox cub this morning! 

It's really early for one to be on it's own, but it clearly wasn't a cat, and dashed across the road near Carshalton Ponds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 27 January, 2010, 08:40:13 pm
I've seen several wrens in the last 2 days. Either that or I have a very small stalker ;D.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 28 January, 2010, 09:14:22 am
I've seen several wrens in the last 2 days. Either that or I have a very small stalker ;D.

I could relate my naked wren capturing adventure one Christmas morning ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 31 January, 2010, 07:14:30 pm

Some amazing bird captures on the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8487031.stm).

I love the barn owl being pursued by the kestrel. It's a superb capture.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 31 January, 2010, 07:19:05 pm
^ Fantastic  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 01 February, 2010, 02:55:27 pm
Two pairs of eyes looking at me in Gunner's Copse.

(http://i238.photobucket.com/albums/ff320/jspooner99/big.jpg)

Can't spot them? Here they are (heavily cropped version of above).

(click to show/hide)



Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 01 February, 2010, 03:31:54 pm
A redwing. Hopping about on the grass just by Sainsbury's.

First one I've seen this winter.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JT on 01 February, 2010, 10:32:47 pm
(http://i33.photobucket.com/albums/d69/JT808/IMG_0075.jpg)

These two little fellers were waiting patiently for their owner while he had elevenses.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 01 February, 2010, 10:34:09 pm
 ;D Fantastic stuff, JT  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 02 February, 2010, 10:24:29 am
Another snatched shot out of my front window. Not great, but you can see what bird it is

(http://img713.imageshack.us/img713/2605/redwingzoom2o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 February, 2010, 07:33:05 pm
(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/6972-1/DSC00599.JPG)

Well, Monday actually. Coming in to land at Doggetts Gravel Pit, Rochford.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 06 February, 2010, 05:14:09 pm
A small clump of snowdrops just coming out  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 07 February, 2010, 04:38:41 pm
First lamb of the season. Unfortunately, it was just the front half of lamb at the side of the road being pecked at by a crow :hand:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 07 February, 2010, 10:55:59 pm
I could relate my naked wren capturing adventure one Christmas morning ...
You probably did it a favour. I wouldn't give a naked wren much chance of surviving winter. Did you knit a little jumper for it?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 08 February, 2010, 12:08:24 pm
A kestrel in a tree just a little off the Innocent Path this morning. He flew off as soon as I stopped.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 08 February, 2010, 10:13:40 pm
Bobb's hat.


Maybe.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 08 February, 2010, 10:18:10 pm
10 days ago now, but anyway:

2 ravens cronking over the Grassmarket and in front of Edinburgh castle ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 10 February, 2010, 10:56:03 am
A large brown rat, mooching about on the patio. Cheeky bugger. We were warned that our new abode might attract these chappies but I didn't realise they would be here so quickly.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 10 February, 2010, 01:33:08 pm
A large brown rat, mooching about on the patio. Cheeky bugger. We were warned that our new abode might attract these chappies but I didn't realise they would be here so quickly.

Time to get a large <colour of your choice> cat.  It won't cost much in food. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 10 February, 2010, 01:47:18 pm

A clattering of Jackdaws. (about a dozen)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: ugly on 10 February, 2010, 01:59:48 pm
Last night riding along the sustrans track north of Didcot power station a Barn owl flew alongside me for about 150 metres. It was about 3 metres away, at head height, a bit of a "wow" moment
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 11 February, 2010, 08:40:24 pm
The biggest pigeon in the world. It was as big as a lamb! And a kestrel in a tree over the Wisp.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 11 February, 2010, 09:55:21 pm
The biggest pigeon in the world. It was as big as a lamb!
Does this mean that the dodo is not extinct?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 13 February, 2010, 06:14:19 pm
At Musselburgh this morning - 1 Slavonian grebe, 3 long tailed ducks, good numbers of velvet scoters, goldeneye, c100 bar tailed godwit.  Wigeon and teal on the lagoons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 13 February, 2010, 06:58:06 pm
Larks, loadsa geese honking the fields, ubiquitous buzzards, snowdrops, lambs.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 14 February, 2010, 05:23:57 pm
Half a dozen, possibly eight buzzards soaring together at Countesswells.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 14 February, 2010, 05:27:41 pm
As I rode past, a kestrel alighting on a tree to make a meal of an unfortunate rodent that it was holding in one of its talons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 14 February, 2010, 06:39:51 pm
Half a dozen, possibly eight buzzards soaring together at Countesswells.

Drat. I was going to post about the two Buzzards that were wheeling about in circles 500' above our house earlier - but you win!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 14 February, 2010, 07:54:41 pm
Saw four or five buzzards today around between S. Derbyshire and Rutland, but the best was a Kite soaring over the Welland Valley.  I didn't know they'd made it this far east.

Oh, and what looked like a swift.  Way too early, surely?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 15 February, 2010, 06:21:32 pm
An enormous grey heron swooping down the Angidy River just up from my house on the way back from my ride today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 15 February, 2010, 08:22:45 pm
Saw four or five buzzards today around between S. Derbyshire and Rutland, but the best was a Kite soaring over the Welland Valley.  I didn't know they'd made it this far east.

Oh, and what looked like a swift.  Way too early, surely?
Kites have been reintroduced in Fineshade Woods, by, IIRC, RSPB in conjunction with the Forestry Commission. There's a Visitor Centre at Top Lodge - about 2 km S. of Duddington or about 7 km. E of Harringworth viaduct. It has a live display from a camera aimed at one of the nests, or at least it did last July when Mrs N & I stopped at the nearby caravan site for a few days (we used to live in Stamford). I saw a few kites in the air while riding through the woods to collect provisions from Kingscliffe, though not many.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wobbly John on 17 February, 2010, 10:06:48 am
I've taken to doing late evening rides out to the Washes at Welney. It's eerie out on a road almost level with miles of flooded land. Only the sound of hundreds of wildfowl calling.

Anyway, before I get there I ride alongside the river bank for a mile or so and the barn owls are getting quite used to me trundling past. they sit on fence posts, a metre or so from the edge of the road. Six of them spotted last night - four of them just sat on their posts and watched me ride by. Two of them took off, one no more than 18" above my helmet.  :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 17 February, 2010, 01:34:31 pm
Kites have been reintroduced in Fineshade Woods, by, IIRC, RSPB in conjunction with the Forestry Commission. There's a Visitor Centre at Top Lodge - about 2 km S. of Duddington or about 7 km. E of Harringworth viaduct. It has a live display from a camera aimed at one of the nests, or at least it did last July when Mrs N & I stopped at the nearby caravan site for a few days (we used to live in Stamford). I saw a few kites in the air while riding through the woods to collect provisions from Kingscliffe, though not many.

Thanks Nick.

Saw a pair of herons this morning, mooching through the drainage ditches around some beet fields near the Trent.  A little later on, a kestrel and a few buzzards.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 17 February, 2010, 07:57:10 pm
Half a dozen Red Crested Pochards on a pond in Bushy Park , Hampton Court.
They look so spectacular at the moment that my young nephew , not a bird enthusiast up til now , exclaimed 'what are they ' when he saw them.

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 18 February, 2010, 09:02:03 pm
Forgot to say. A cormorant on the Kennet in the middle of Reading, day before yesterday. Gave me a filthy look & dived when I stopped to look at it. Don't usually see them there: they generally hang about on the Thames, in less urban settings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 19 February, 2010, 10:26:08 pm
Sparrowhawk from the train, somewhere between Kirkcaldy and Leuchars
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 21 February, 2010, 04:46:00 pm

Pied Wagtail that kept scarpering close just in front of me. Overly cute.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 21 February, 2010, 06:47:18 pm
As todays ride was cancelled due to snow I had a wander and saw a Dipper this afternoon.

I also ended up in the Art Gallery and they had a conservation and naturalist exhibition showing some of their collection from a long time ago when eggs and birds were collected legally. There were two Golden Eagles and they were huuge!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 21 February, 2010, 08:11:09 pm
Nice view of a kite on our Beacons 200 yesterday.  Not that unusual, maybe, but it's the first I've seen this year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 22 February, 2010, 06:46:55 pm
4 redwings and 2 wrens out the back window.  The redwings were busy turning over fallen leaves and the wrens seemed to be taking advantage picking at whatever the redwings were leaving.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 22 February, 2010, 08:54:54 pm
I've got a good view of the beach on the south side of Aberdeen harbour from our new office. I'm going to have to learn waders  :)

Today there were oystercatchers, ringed plovers (I think) & something else I couldn't identify.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 23 February, 2010, 07:03:07 am
I've got a good view of the beach on the south side of Aberdeen harbour from our new office. I'm going to have to learn waders  :)

Today there were oystercatchers, ringed plovers (I think) & something else I couldn't identify.

I'm jealous ! 
What did the 'something else' look like ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 23 February, 2010, 09:05:44 am
A skein of geese wheeling and honking overhead in a grey, snowy winter sky

Again, not rare but it made me smile as I was trudging down the drive with the rubbish & recycling :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 23 February, 2010, 10:14:57 am
Neighbour has just reported an otter swimming upstream in the ditch at the bottom of our gardens.  Must keep working, must keep working, must keep working................

Green parakeet attempting to get seed out of hanging feeder with wrong shaped beak, plenty of food on bird table, why not eat that?

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 23 February, 2010, 04:27:09 pm
I've got a good view of the beach on the south side of Aberdeen harbour from our new office. I'm going to have to learn waders  :)

Today there were oystercatchers, ringed plovers (I think) & something else I couldn't identify.

I'm jealous ! 
What did the 'something else' look like ?

Slightly smaller than an oystercatcher, grey on top, white underneath, red/orange legs, couldn't get a good view of the bill - so it obviously wasn't large & colourful like an oystercatcher's.

I think the plovers are of the little ringed variety.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 23 February, 2010, 05:51:36 pm
I've got a good view of the beach on the south side of Aberdeen harbour from our new office. I'm going to have to learn waders  :)

Today there were oystercatchers, ringed plovers (I think) & something else I couldn't identify.

I'm jealous ! 
What did the 'something else' look like ?

Slightly smaller than an oystercatcher, grey on top, white underneath, red/orange legs, couldn't get a good view of the bill - so it obviously wasn't large & colourful like an oystercatcher's.

I think the plovers are of the little ringed variety.

Could the "something else" be redshank, possibly? 

I'd be quite surprised if the ringed plovers were "little", as they should still be in Africa and even in summer they're (really) rare in Scotland ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 23 February, 2010, 07:04:24 pm
Could the "something else" be redshank, possibly? 

Redshank sounds good to me too.  Or possibly turnstone ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 23 February, 2010, 09:25:10 pm
I looked up the RSPB bird guide & I'm leaning towards redshank for the unknown.

As for the plover, perhaps I should read a bit more & not just look at the pictures  ::-)

I'll have to take binocs & a bird guide to work  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 February, 2010, 01:19:54 pm
A curlew flew acroos the road in front of me on my way home last night.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 24 February, 2010, 01:55:13 pm
I looked up the RSPB bird guide & I'm leaning towards redshank for the unknown.

As for the plover, perhaps I should read a bit more & not just look at the pictures  ::-)

I'll have to take binocs & a bird guide to work  :thumbsup:

See if you can talk to some of the people sharing your shiny new building (I think) ...

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 February, 2010, 02:59:35 pm
I looked up the RSPB bird guide & I'm leaning towards redshank for the unknown.

As for the plover, perhaps I should read a bit more & not just look at the pictures  ::-)

I'll have to take binocs & a bird guide to work  :thumbsup:

See if you can talk to some of the people sharing your shiny new building (I think) ...



They're not arriving until April.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 24 February, 2010, 03:10:12 pm
A Dunnock on he fence. I like Dunnocks. They are small brown things but nicely proportioned and usually overlooked even though very common.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 February, 2010, 03:46:33 pm
Some people might question the moral standards of dunnock females (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunnock)  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 25 February, 2010, 11:36:33 pm
Seen last weekend rather than today, but a load of Reed Buntings.

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4057/4372707321_4699aa222e.jpg)

Also Curlews, Oystercatchers, some small wader that I'm not sure of, Wigeons and possibly Goldeneyes...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 26 February, 2010, 01:24:30 pm
Took a pair of binocs & a guidebook to work today. I'm pretty certain that what I thought were redshanks are redshanks.

Also saw some turnstones.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 26 February, 2010, 01:27:03 pm
Took a pair of binocs & a guidebook to work today. I'm pretty certain that what I thought were redshanks are redshanks.

Also saw some turnstones.
:thumbsup:

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 26 February, 2010, 05:38:05 pm
Took a pair of binocs & a guidebook to work today. I'm pretty certain that what I thought were redshanks are redshanks.

Also saw some turnstones.
Redshanks tend to walk a bit like chickens.....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 26 February, 2010, 05:39:25 pm
Tufted duck in amongst the mallards.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 26 February, 2010, 09:22:13 pm
Tufted duck in amongst the mallards.

Have you seen a specialist?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 27 February, 2010, 08:45:42 am
A first for our back garden this morning - a cock pheasant.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 27 February, 2010, 09:58:38 pm
Cycling north of Aberdeen saw loads of buzzards, several curlews & a lark (heard a few of these).

At the Ythan estuary there was a raft of eiders gossiping like a gaggle of grannies on the no. 17 bus ("Ooh..", "Ooh..").

Oh, and a dead blue tit on the road  :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 01 March, 2010, 01:22:36 pm
At the Ythan estuary there was a raft of eiders gossiping like a gaggle of grannies on the no. 17 bus ("Ooh..", "Ooh..").

Which is why (I'm told) they're known as "wifies" down the coast.  Long-tailed ducks are called "oldsquaw" in N America for the same reason, though with a different rhythm (ooh OOH ooh ooh).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 01 March, 2010, 04:39:47 pm
Crocuses and a beautiful Jay. The sunshine really helping to show off his iridescent colours.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 01 March, 2010, 05:26:42 pm
We once shared a house with a bloke from Wakefield (who later became slightly famous in a political scandal)

He'd never seen a Jay before:

"Hard bastards, those" he said,  "You'd f'in have to be if you were a pink crow"

I've had a soft spot for them ever since :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 01 March, 2010, 05:28:44 pm




"Hard bastards, those" he said,  "You'd f'in have to be if you were a pink crow"



 ;D

I've always thought of them as the Danny La Rue of the crow world.


Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 01 March, 2010, 06:29:03 pm
From Bill Oddie's Little Black Bird Book....
'I've seen this funny bird in my garden'
'It was a jay'
'Shall I describe it'
'No, it was a jay'
'It wasn't a jay'
'Yes it was'
'No it wasn't, I've seen jays'
'Yes I know, you saw one in your garden'
and so it goes on... ;D

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 01 March, 2010, 06:35:38 pm
From Bill Oddie's Little Black Bird Book....
'I've seen this funny bird in my garden'
'It was a jay'
'Shall I describe it'
'No, it was a jay'
'It wasn't a jay'
'Yes it was'
'No it wasn't, I've seen jays'
'Yes I know, you saw one in your garden'
and so it goes on... ;D



I saw him doing that stuff on the telly once. He came across as an arrogant knob.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 01 March, 2010, 06:38:37 pm

I think he used to sometimes grate on Kate Humble's nerves. But she was ever the professional.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 01 March, 2010, 07:34:40 pm
Anyway, seen today...dozens of redwings in the Meadows. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 02 March, 2010, 05:46:26 pm
60-foot "peregrine" outside the Scottish Parliament  ;)

BBC online (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/8543983.stm)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 02 March, 2010, 10:00:47 pm
Geese

Lapwings

Gulls

Rats

Badgers (dead)

Deer (dead)

Fish (in the verge, by the road. WTF?)

Two Stoats.

Quite a lot of squashed Frogs.


Ahh... a bike ride in The Fens  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 March, 2010, 10:03:00 pm
Have you been suffering rains of fish and frogs (and possibly badgers and deers!) ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 02 March, 2010, 10:05:05 pm
Have you been suffering rains of fish and frogs (and possibly badgers and deers!) ?

That area between Downham Market and St Ives? Who knows what happens there...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 03 March, 2010, 11:15:53 pm
Hundreds and hundreds of starlings, doing the swirly coalescing, folding group flying thing near Knighton

Lovely :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 04 March, 2010, 10:00:41 am
Not by me but by Mrs Pcolbeck. A Red Kite sat on some road kill about a mile from our house.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 04 March, 2010, 01:11:39 pm
Anyway, seen today...dozens of redwings in the Meadows. 

...and dozens of them in our local park in Sydenham on Sunday.  I've been used to seeing the odd one or two around our area this winter but this was quite a sight - perhaps a hundred or so picking around on the very waterlogged grass, mixed up with a handful of starlings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 March, 2010, 01:47:49 pm
Not by me but by Mrs Pcolbeck. A Red Kite sat on some road kill about a mile from our house.
On my ride on Tuesday, I commented to my cycling partner that I wished I'd kept count of the kites. At the time, I could see six. I'm not sure what double figure number I saw altogether.  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 04 March, 2010, 02:24:36 pm
Not by me but by Mrs Pcolbeck. A Red Kite sat on some road kill about a mile from our house.
On my ride on Tuesday, I commented to my cycling partner that I wished I'd kept count of the kites. At the time, I could see six. I'm not sure what double figure number I saw altogether.  ;D

Not as common up here as they are on the South Downs. I often see them from the M40 where it goes up through the big chalk cut.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 04 March, 2010, 03:33:45 pm


Fish (in the verge, by the road. WTF?)



What a strange plaice?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 04 March, 2010, 03:34:58 pm

Buzzard.   :D

And I got within 20 metres of it before it decided to launch itself off from the fence.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rower40 on 05 March, 2010, 05:25:52 pm
Decapitated Fox in the 4-foot (the gap between the rails) at Proof House Junction, Birmingham.  Seen yesterday morning, still there just now.  I had the misfortune that both yesterday's and today's trains stopped with me next to the corpse, giving a grandstand view.

Proof House - Known to train drivers as "the crucible" as you have to get a red before you get a colour.

PS [Dom Joly Voice]I'm On The Train[/Dom Joly Voice]
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 05 March, 2010, 10:27:04 pm
I saw an intact fox from the train on Weds afternoon trotting across a snow-covered field near Blackford.

This evening a pair of deer in a field just past Carnsnootie.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 06 March, 2010, 10:48:46 am
Cycling north of Aberdeen saw loads of buzzards, several curlews & a lark (heard a few of these).

At the Ythan estuary there was a raft of eiders gossiping like a gaggle of grannies on the no. 17 bus ("Ooh..", "Ooh..").

Oh, and a dead blue tit on the road  :'(

Went to Arundel WWT reserve with some friends and their little girl, and all the eider were doing their "Ah-OOH!" calls. Jessy goes "Look, mummy, Frankie Howerd ducks!"
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 06 March, 2010, 12:35:27 pm
A couple of goldfinches and a little group of long tailed tits at the back of the house. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 07 March, 2010, 06:05:44 pm

I heard loads of great tits reinflating their tyres with a rusting foot pump.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 07 March, 2010, 06:12:10 pm
First dolphin of the year today  :thumbsup:

Also this weekend: heard larks, yellowhammers & woodpecker; saw deer, kestrel, geese (skeins & in the fields) & lambs plus the usual plethora of buzzards.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 07 March, 2010, 09:26:09 pm
Barn owl about 90 minutes before sunset.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 07 March, 2010, 09:50:45 pm
Near Sonning Common this morning. A kestrel, hovering maybe 20 foot up, & so intent on something at the side of the road that it ignored Mrs B & me as we cycled almost directly under it.

A kite at Sonning Common, apparently chasing another one away from its patch.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 07 March, 2010, 10:26:23 pm
Yesterday, on the Grand Union canal towpath near Knowle, was a Chinese Mandarin duck (drake presumably) mixed in with the usual mallard. All were in full breeding plumage, looking truly splendid in a brief spot of sunshine.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 10 March, 2010, 12:57:41 pm
A seal scoffing a fish in the harbour yesterday evening.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 10 March, 2010, 08:38:19 pm
A pair of dunnocks acting strangely in the back garden.  One was flitting about following the other and stopping every so often to flick its wings.  I assumed this must be some sort of courtship display but I've just looked it up and found it to be quite the reverse, the birds in question must've been both male and the wing flicking is the owner of the territory telling the other to be on his way.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Glosbiker on 10 March, 2010, 09:37:00 pm
The sex life of dunnocks is hugely complicated and, frankly, rather louche.  A female may copulate with up to 20 males ejecting the sperm of those she reckons aren't up to it!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 10 March, 2010, 09:47:22 pm
The sex life of dunnocks is hugely complicated and, frankly, rather louche.  A female may copulate with up to 20 males ejecting the sperm of those she reckons aren't up to it!

The stuff I learn here is amazing. This ejecting of the sub optimal sperm, is it a conscious choice?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 11 March, 2010, 03:21:14 pm

Last night it was so clear that I could see M42 and M43  next to Orion's Belt.  (naked eye)
I've got crappy peepers even when wearing glasses, so a bit of a scoop for me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 11 March, 2010, 04:01:41 pm
Mr. Reynard strolling across  open fields over Cauldon Low near Ashbourne.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 March, 2010, 06:07:49 pm
Marsh harrier near Walton on the Naze.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 11 March, 2010, 10:27:34 pm
On my way home this evening, a curlew stood in the middle of the road.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 12 March, 2010, 09:40:55 am
Heard today - woodpecker next to the surgery.  I couldn't see it, but it must have been on the far side of one of the two closest trees.  He gave a hammer as I drew to a halt, then two more as I was getting my breath back and my keys from my bag. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 12 March, 2010, 09:41:22 am
Five ladybirds on the ceiling of my Bathroom.  I occasionally see one in there, but I don't know why five of the wandered out today.  Presumably just the right combination of moisture and temperature kicked them into activity.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 12 March, 2010, 10:33:29 am
Fairly fresh dead badger beside the road between Henley & Wargrave this morning. Looked as if something had been munching on its guts.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 12 March, 2010, 12:35:07 pm
Five ladybirds on the ceiling of my Bathroom.  I occasionally see one in there, but I don't know why five of the wandered out today.

Ah... The Gathering. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xr8vUTm64h0)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 12 March, 2010, 12:41:47 pm
Last night, on the road back from son number 2's school after a parents' evening, a badger.  A live badger. Trotting happily along the side of the road and then hopping up the embankment and looking round at us as we passed.  We were absolutely over the moon about this.  We've never seen live badgers in the wild before and, what's more, this was in London. 

(Well, on the edge of West Wickham:  here (http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=hayes,+kent&sll=51.51749,-0.42746&sspn=0.129894,0.362892&g=hayes&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Hayes,+Bromley,+Kent,+United+Kingdom&ll=51.369115,0.02708&spn=0,359.977319&z=16&layer=c&cbll=51.369177,0.026979&panoid=TFXC3Se2AfQF4XbHG-DHSg&cbp=12,318.04,,0,5))
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 14 March, 2010, 11:12:04 pm
A plethora of road kill today - a badger, a mountain hare & a frog  :hand:

Live stuff seen: buzzards, red grouse, lapwings doing their crazy aerobatics.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 15 March, 2010, 11:49:28 am
Mad March Hares.
I thought that was a bit of a myth but they were crazy like crazy things. Very distracting.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 15 March, 2010, 12:54:42 pm
Mad March Hares.
I thought that was a bit of a myth but they were crazy like crazy things. Very distracting.

Brilliant aren't they. We get loads of hares round here.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 March, 2010, 10:31:49 pm
Three old boys out on nice vintage club bikes near Kington; the one in front on the descent had  a cardboard box on his rack, containing a small dog :)

also a large fox near Llanfihangel Crucorney, a hare near Knighton and a kite near Llandrindod Wells.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 19 March, 2010, 09:44:11 am
last night, a tawny owl in Frank Dixon Way and two very athletic frogs on the pavement outside our house
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 19 March, 2010, 10:13:40 am
Last night, near Streatham Common station, I saw a ginger domestic cat and urban fox within about three foot of each other.  Neither seemed to be in the least bit interested in the other, and far more worried about me, even though I couldn't get anywhere near them because of a six foot high metal fence between us!

I've always assumed that there would be some animosity between the two species, or at least avoidance, since they must be targeting broadly the same sort of prey.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 19 March, 2010, 10:16:44 am
I saw a rather beautiful but very dead rat in the middle of the car park as I drew in to work.  I managed to move it before anyone drove over it.

It had been killed by a bite to the neck, but hadn't been eaten by the predator.  I'd guess a cat or a fox.

A number of birds - crows and magpies were worrying at the wound.  When I moved the corpse, the crows were wandering about as if they were saying, 'I'm sure I just left my breakfast here...' ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 19 March, 2010, 11:08:18 am
A swan in the local brook. It was sporting the last remnants of its juvenile plumage.
I was at least 10 metres away from it and it still had a hissy fit.   ;D

Yep, it's spring.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 March, 2010, 05:50:17 pm
Great close-up of a sparrowhawk dismembering a pigeon at the roadside.  I was nearly on it before it saw me; just up the road from Tewdric's house.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 19 March, 2010, 07:22:12 pm
It does suprise me how close you can get to wildlife sometimes on the bike before you are spotted.It realy can be a joy:especially on quiet country lanes with no vehicles & few folk about.
It has been one of the unexpected benefits of doing audax rides.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 March, 2010, 08:24:37 pm
Indeed

I did a perm Denmead 600 on my own in July 2006; it was a glorious weekend, and I managed to tweak the route to stop at home at about 400 k.

Just after dawn next morning, another beautiful day, I was tiddling up a little lane between Hungerford and the Test Valley and came up behind a big fox, just sitting in the road with his back to me looking at the day.  I got very close before he heard me and scampered off :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 19 March, 2010, 09:01:37 pm
Literally dozens of frogs/toads on the lanes tonight. They seem to be just sitting in the middle of the road drinking up the warmth and wet.
I didn't hit any, but 2 wheels are a better aim than 4, I reckon it'll be carnage in the morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 March, 2010, 09:37:17 pm
loads of frogs on the lane past our house last night and this evening, and so many in our yard that I had to use a torch to be able to walk across it without squishing lots.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 20 March, 2010, 03:52:57 pm
A stag with gert antlers on the little lane that goes up to Haresfield Beacon on the way home

I enjoyed something similar in Glen Garry last year.Taken from my Dear Diary thread in Ride Reports

A red deer is running along side me approx 10 metres away in the trees.It appears to be spooked & panicy:it suddendly hangs a very sharp right which brings it across the front of me so close that I am almost wearing the antlers on the barbag.Frightening & exciting at the same time to have wild life so up close.I wonder if the deer felt the same way

The deer did not  become aware of me untill I had almost passed it by
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 20 March, 2010, 04:17:54 pm
The first wasp of the year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 20 March, 2010, 04:51:31 pm
The first wasp of the year.
+1
and... 8 seals, the usual ubiquitous buzzards, noisy larks, anna red sqrl  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 21 March, 2010, 09:17:02 am
Not seen but heard, the year's first skylark. Yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 21 March, 2010, 11:40:42 am
The first wasp of the year.

+1 on Friday.
First mozzie in the kitchen too...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 21 March, 2010, 05:53:12 pm
Avocets on the River Clyst.  Last chance before they all migrate up north to breed.
Also godwits and widgeon feeding like mad, getting ready for their return to the breeding grounds.

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 21 March, 2010, 11:06:47 pm
A great white egret, in the half flooded field 3/4 mile from my regular sunday pub, along with 70-80 wigeon, 50 teal, a dozen or so shoveler, some canada geese, a couple of herons
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 22 March, 2010, 10:23:58 am
No today, but over the weekend I was back in the north-east (Scotland) to see me mam.

Saturday was seal day near Newburgh (around 200 on the beach)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2781/4447405683_2091d8280f.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4047/4447444023_7c978c73d8.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4005/4447420365_3a9b8d25b9.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4013/4447456797_33c853b0da.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4027/4447471553_927fc2e809.jpg)

Sunday saw an early morning spin around the town I grew up in (Ellon) and into the woods where I played as a kid. Never once saw a red squirrel in there before in all the years I wandered about in there. Saw at least half a dozen in the space of ten minutes...

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4025/4450418074_6aa85dbe55.jpg)

(http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2788/4449650777_76ec4fb3d4.jpg)

Saw a grey squirrel on the walk into work this morning and that got the proper 'meh' treatment after the reds yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 22 March, 2010, 11:23:09 am
And I thought I was doing well with 8 seals at the Bridge of Don...
What focal length were you using to get your grey seal shots anth?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 22 March, 2010, 11:49:48 am
And I thought I was doing well with 8 seals at the Bridge of Don...
What focal length were you using to get your grey seal shots anth?

You need to get yourself to Newburgh... ;) There's a short walk from the golf club to see the seals from the other side of the water (which we normally do), or a longer walk on the peripherary of the Forvie Reserve that took us here. There are usually maybe 15-20, this was exceptional.

We managed to get within about 30 yards. Any closer and they got a little spooked - and we'd got to that point very very slowly. We sat for about 45 minutes just watching and snapping away - the noise from them was incredible. 200mm for the close-ups - some are cropped down, others left full size.

Seriously, your seal fetish needs to be sated with a trip!

EDIT: there are certain times of year, when there are young pups, that you're not allowed to walk round this side as well.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 22 March, 2010, 12:15:55 pm
A great white egret, in the half flooded field 3/4 mile from my regular sunday pub, along with 70-80 wigeon, 50 teal, a dozen or so shoveler, some canada geese, a couple of herons
Great white? There's a rarity! Whereabouts was that?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 22 March, 2010, 06:10:40 pm
Ashleworth Ham (http://www.birder.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/Recent%201st%20half%2010.htm), here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=382895&y=226382&z=115&sv=382895,226382&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=770&ax=382895&ay=226382&lm=0)

I ride past pretty much whenever I go to the pub by a non-direct route. It's the second time I've seen one whilst riding past, though this time I knew about it in advance.

They aren't as rare as they used to be. There's been half a dozen floating round the country for most of the year. When I started back in the mid 70s there was onto about one every other year, and not for very long either.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 22 March, 2010, 07:29:06 pm


(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4047/4447444023_7c978c73d8.jpg)

Was the one on the left telling jokes?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 22 March, 2010, 10:56:49 pm


(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4047/4447444023_7c978c73d8.jpg)

Was the one on the left telling jokes?

Toilet humour - something to do with the privy seal.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 24 March, 2010, 04:39:44 pm
A grey wagtail down by the Water of Leith on a lunchtime wander:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4069/4459305837_07bef18173.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 25 March, 2010, 08:59:06 am
Ashleworth Ham (http://www.birder.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/Recent%201st%20half%2010.htm), here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=382895&y=226382&z=115&sv=382895,226382&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=770&ax=382895&ay=226382&lm=0)

I ride past pretty much whenever I go to the pub by a non-direct route. It's the second time I've seen one whilst riding past, though this time I knew about it in advance.

They aren't as rare as they used to be. There's been half a dozen floating round the country for most of the year. When I started back in the mid 70s there was onto about one every other year, and not for very long either.
Damn, far too far away for me
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Moloko on 25 March, 2010, 03:42:07 pm
Lots of pheasants. One cock pheasant seemed to be almost tame and almost nonplussed at me being 3ft away.
Lots of red deer and rabbits.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 25 March, 2010, 03:54:45 pm
I saw two black pheasants on Sunday. A bit of a contrast with how colourful the males look at the moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 26 March, 2010, 02:16:15 pm
Ashleworth Ham (http://www.birder.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/Recent%201st%20half%2010.htm), here (http://www.streetmap.co.uk/map.srf?x=382895&y=226382&z=115&sv=382895,226382&st=4&ar=y&mapp=map.srf&searchp=ids.srf&dn=770&ax=382895&ay=226382&lm=0)

I ride past pretty much whenever I go to the pub by a non-direct route. It's the second time I've seen one whilst riding past, though this time I knew about it in advance.

They aren't as rare as they used to be. There's been half a dozen floating round the country for most of the year. When I started back in the mid 70s there was onto about one every other year, and not for very long either.

I've just been on the phone to my mother (in Glos) who said she had just been over to see a GWE at Ashleworth.  I expressed suprise but then remembered that someone here had mentioned seeing one, and lo and behold it's this same one. 
What a fine bird it is too!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 28 March, 2010, 10:12:28 pm
Wild boar in the forest, shortly before dusk. Six or seven of them. They all turned to look at me as I stood stock still. After about a minute they decided I was harmless and turned round to continue eating. Then they all ran off in the opposite direction. First I've ever seen.
Title: Re: Seen today - Sparrowhawk vs jackdaws
Post by: border-rider on 04 April, 2010, 11:34:03 am
FIIIGHT !

A sparrowhawk took one of our resident jackdaws this morning.  She had it on the ground and was just about start butchering it when the cavalry arrived.  A couple of jackdaws went straight in and started pecking the hawk, and about 100 more streamed out of the barn and wheeled overhead, making the most unholy noise and filling the sky.

In the end the hawk gave it up as a bad job and exited, pursued by an angry mob...

The original jackdaw flew away.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 07 April, 2010, 01:41:33 am
3 (separate) barn owls tonight, and quite a number of bats, type unknown
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 08 April, 2010, 02:55:14 pm
Seeing urban foxes is not unusual in my part of the world, even in daylight, but they're usually to be seen bolting into gardens and so forth.  The other day, though, there was one trotting unconcernedly across Sainsbury's car park at about 3 pm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 10 April, 2010, 10:51:43 am
Out on a pre breakfast spin, I was concentrating on picking a line between potholes, while being aware that a car was approaching from behind, when a deer broke loose from the woods and ran across the road in front almost under my front wheel. A bit close.

Earlier I saw some cows. In a field. 

Yes, Mrs. Hall was similarly unimpressed, but there were English Longhorns.  I do like those traditional breeds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 12 April, 2010, 11:45:00 am
Some time over Easter Lt. Col. Larrington and I were sitting in his conservatory when a brown blur and a crashing of bushes signalled that a hen pheasant had failed to set down in his back garden.  Never seen a pheasant around those parts save as part of a Dinner.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 12 April, 2010, 07:37:09 pm
A goldfinch on the nyjer feeder on the patio.

This isn't so unusual, except that they've been missing since the bad weather.
 :D

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 13 April, 2010, 12:30:48 pm
On Saturday: several seals & a deer on the island at Bridge of Don, loadsa buzzards, larks, heard yellowhammers, bonkers lapwings, shelducks & hundreds of eiders on a beach.

And I saw a blue tit flying out of the nest box I put up a couple of months ago, so fingers crossed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 13 April, 2010, 02:43:53 pm
I wandered out to the shop earlier, and spotted a fox in the car park.  Spotted me, too, and seemed to lope off.  But when I got back, it was still wandering about.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 14 April, 2010, 04:24:01 pm
A huuuuge owl pellet in the yard.  That must be one big owl  :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 14 April, 2010, 04:49:36 pm
It's a football from your next door neighbour's Mallers. Throw it back.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JJ on 14 April, 2010, 06:48:13 pm
Day before yesterday really, but anyhow.

A BIG pod of dolphins fishing in between supertankers in the Bosphorus. (back home now  :'( )
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: plum on 15 April, 2010, 09:56:45 am
What was it that I saw the other day while riding about?

Looked like a sausage dog version of a mouse, long extended body, about 10 inches total, didn't look like it had much of a tail. Bright orange!?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 15 April, 2010, 09:57:28 am
Weasel ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 15 April, 2010, 10:20:27 am
I thought weasels had quite visible tails. We see them regularly round here (and stoats too) and they're like cartoon animals as they can change direction instantly.

Last night driving home from the pub I saw a pair of green eyes in the verge beside the quiet road. We realised it was a badger, who then decided to step out in front of the car and trundle across the road. Fortunately we stopped in time. He then stuck his head in a hole in the bank beside the road (back end still sticking out, just like my dog does - she thinks you can't see her now) and we carried on.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 15 April, 2010, 10:23:41 am
I think you're right re the tail, but I couldn't think of anything that fits the description without much of a tail...

If it's 10" long and slim it's likely going to be a mustelid of some sort, I think.  Orange sounds weaselly...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 15 April, 2010, 11:27:54 am
Today seems to be the day for the magpies to plunder the blackbirds' nests. I had hoped it wouldn't happen this year. Council contractors removed the magpie nest on Monday while tree pruning in my street so I figured that without extra mouths to feed the magpies might leave the blackbirds alone.
I heard a commotion , two blackbirds were trying to fight off a pair of magpies from a nest about three gardens away. Then one of the magpies turned its attention to the nest in the tree at the end of my garden. No messing , it flew straight in to the tree directly at the nest. In a futile gesture of solidarity with the blackbirds I ran out and shook the tree and the magpie flew away. It was then that I noticed the two dead fledgelings (one decapitated) on my lawn , presumably dropped by a magpie on an earlier raid.
I find it odd that the magpies don't come down for the meal that is lying there waiting for them on the lawn.
Do they kill for pleasure ?

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)


 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: plum on 15 April, 2010, 12:34:29 pm
Yes having read you thoughts and googled weasel it does look like the best candidate. It went by fairly quickly, I probably didn't see the tails. That's pretty cool I don't remember ever seeing anything like that before, don't get many daytime creatures in Brum.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 15 April, 2010, 05:57:38 pm
My first lapwing of the year. There used to be huge flocks of them round here but not these days.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 16 April, 2010, 04:14:16 pm
Green Woodpecker on NCN21 near East Surrey Hospital, as I had a lunchtime pootle.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 17 April, 2010, 09:37:57 am
Mrs C cleaned the windows at the back of the house last week.  Ever since we've been beseiged by a variety of small birds attacking them.  Mostly chaffinches and robins from what I can see.  I presume they can now see their reflections and are seeing them as a threat.  The windows weren't that dirty to look through, but I guess that the thin coating of dust made all the difference in preventing a reflection.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 17 April, 2010, 10:40:06 am
Looked out of the window first thing this morning and saw this little creature tip-toeing about.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/151537/930c3828a/Fox1c.jpg)

Could have been this chap or its family that cleared up the dead birds on my lawn on Thursday (see previous post)

Snake
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 April, 2010, 05:57:10 pm
Ubiquitous buzzards, 3 deer (Roe, prolly) and a lizard :)

Oh, and a dead badger  :'(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 17 April, 2010, 06:01:32 pm
1 Bambi
1 long mousey rodenty type thing (maybe 1inch wide but long, 10cm-ish, and milk chocolate brown)
1 Squirrel.  Looked like a red squirrel, but bigger. Much redder than a UK Grey. Maybe we get different squirrels in Germany?
2 Birds with yellowish front, light brown back, and had ear tufts.

edit: birds look like crested tits
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 April, 2010, 06:54:02 pm
1 Squirrel.  Looked like a red squirrel, but bigger. Much redder than a UK Grey. Maybe we get different squirrels in Germany?
Red sqrls come in different colours. We saw a Black red sqrl when we were in Germany, running across the road in front of a group of people who looked like they'd just been at a funeral, spookily.
Bit like this one: File:Squirrel germany.jpg - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Squirrel_germany.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 17 April, 2010, 09:37:06 pm
Lots of interesting birdlife over the last couple of days as we were enjoying a short break on the Lancaster Canal and the Lune Estuary. But by far the most thrilling sighting of the weekend was a solitary swallow seen today. Made my heart sing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 17 April, 2010, 09:57:59 pm
Very out of date by now, but...
On the way to Lunnun 8 days ago, there were numerous red kites. The good lady at the Falcon Inn said that someone in Thame was probably feeding them, since they occurred in agitated flocks. I subsequently saw such a flock of 20-30 kites over Watlington and stopped to watch. The birds were, circling, wheeling, diving, maybe even tumbling, in a way that looked more like a display for the mating season than a feeding frenzy. I didn't see any of them diving to field level. It was an incredible display of aerobatic skill, way beyond the effortless gliding that seems the norm. Has anyone any idea what was going on?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 19 April, 2010, 01:40:22 pm
Three toads when the builders lifted the yorkstone slabs that form a path along the back of our house. Funny thing is I have lived here ten years and never seen a toad in the garden before, newts and frogs (next door has a pond) but toads no.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 19 April, 2010, 05:15:52 pm
am sat at my desk watching a woodpecker attacking the peanuts in the birdfeeder 5 meters away.  Such aggressive pecking, sounds like someone hammering in nails!

Sadly, the camera is in the house.   There's a bluetit on the other side of the feeder now too, and a finch of some sort picking up the crumbs underneath.  Cool.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 21 April, 2010, 12:04:46 am
Yesterday, actually. Woke up to find pigeon feathers all over the garden. Hypothesised that there had been a pigeon/cat interaction, resulting in a reduction in the pigeon population.

While pottering about by the bird feeder later in the day, I was scolded vociferously by a rather scruffy blue tit. Definitely aimed at me: it was looking me straight in the eye, from no more than 2 metres away. I think it was complaining that I was between it & dinner. Cheeky little bugger. Who does it think provides the grub?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 21 April, 2010, 12:23:06 am
a number of May Bugs.  (They're dumb creatures, and obviously can't read a calendar either)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 21 April, 2010, 08:36:33 pm
Buzzard. Not exactly remarkable but for the fact that it was the nearest I'd seen one to home - only just outside Sittingbourne.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: LindaG on 21 April, 2010, 08:42:02 pm
A brown hare.   :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 22 April, 2010, 11:42:57 am
Last Friday, a pair of otters - 1 adult & 1 young - foraging along the coast by Kyleakin (Skye)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 22 April, 2010, 06:02:44 pm
A stoat running away from me, then diving into the hedge.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 April, 2010, 06:05:10 pm
A heron, looking a little lost standing as it was in a field of what I think are going to be peas, and being dive-bombed by a gang of black-headed gulls.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CAMRAMan on 22 April, 2010, 07:24:03 pm
Buzzard. Not exactly remarkable but for the fact that it was the nearest I'd seen one to home - only just outside Sittingbourne.

I saw one flying over my house the other day in Warwick, which is nothing remarkable maybe, but I've never seen one here before and it was being harangued persistently by a crow, so I assume it's an occasional visitor.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 23 April, 2010, 08:55:48 am
NickNackers and Warwickestershirelad, interesting comment about sightings of buzzards over towns as I too saw one last weekend over Brighton, just calmly floating around, which got all the Herring gulls in a bit of a flap. They didn't go near it, and he/she was unconcerned by them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 23 April, 2010, 09:23:10 am
A grey squirrel perched on top of one of my neighbours fence posts making a hell of a racket, I think against an example of Felis Catus who was unconcernedly wandering off in the other direction.  I can't say I've ever heard a squirrel making quite such an odd sound.  Initially I wondered it if it was a large bird.  A very strange sound.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 23 April, 2010, 09:34:52 am
Right now (9.35am). Blackbird on top of an Elm tree singing his heart out trying to attract a mate or declare his territory. Beautiful sound.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 23 April, 2010, 11:37:57 am
A couple of deer wandering unconcernedly around the motorcycle training area next door to the office.  Though I bet as soon as there's any motorbike activity they'll be off like a shot and probably end up under a lorry on the A414 :-[

I've seen muntjac around these parts but these were full size proper bambis.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 April, 2010, 10:11:07 pm
Living: first swallows of the year, bullfinch, siskin, jays, buzzards, yellowhammers, deer gracefully jumping over a fence, (not so) wild boar, zillions of lambs.

Dead: badger, 3 deer (2 on railway track).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: kevinp on 25 April, 2010, 09:12:49 am
Stripy cows mmmmmmmmmm

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v437/kenderworld/DSCF0789.jpg)

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v437/kenderworld/DSCF0791.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 25 April, 2010, 09:26:24 am
Belted Galloways (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belted_Galloway), or 'Belties'. Not seen that much in Galloway, except at the Wigtown Show.
Quote
In the US these cows are often informally known as "police car cows,""panda cows" or "Oreo cows" after the Oreo cookie.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 25 April, 2010, 12:25:14 pm
On my ride to Blackheath at around 5-30am, I passed an amazingly cheeky fox.  I was just coming to the top of a bit of hill, around Sydenham iirc, so slowing slightly, and the fox who had been slowly wandering across the pavement, towards some houses, actually turned around and started to come towards me.

I'm guessing that it was reasonably used to humans, and maybe gets fed by someone, so when it saw me slowing, it thought that food was a possibility!  I quite often see foxes on my commute, but most of them are quite wary of people, and tend to run away.  The most "friendly" may stop and watch me pass, but normally fairly warily.  This is the first time I've seen one actually appear to decide to try and approach me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 25 April, 2010, 02:04:23 pm
A (very nearly) kamikaze squirrel.His brakes were sharper than mine & he had a very impressively small turning circle :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 25 April, 2010, 07:49:20 pm
2 Black Woodpeckers.

Thought they were crows or something when flying but were clearly woodpeckers when they landed on a tree.  Hadn't realised they were so big!  Usually tend to see Great Spotted Woodpeckers around the local forest.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 25 April, 2010, 10:22:46 pm
A not-barn owl between Bourne End and the next village at about 5 am on the last stretch of the Severn Across. It was sitting on the kerb, looked at me, realised I was quite close and flew off.

(Amazing wldlife identification, I know, but it was dark and I was tired)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fuzzy on 25 April, 2010, 10:38:50 pm
A not-barn owl between Bourne End and the next village at about 5 am on the last stretch of the Severn Across. It was sitting on the kerb, looked at me, realised I was quite close and flew off.

(Amazing wldlife identification, I know, but it was dark and I was tired)

Bourne End in Bucks? If so, were you heading West, towards Marlow?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fuzzy on 25 April, 2010, 10:39:26 pm
The first bat of the year doing batobatics around the garden :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 25 April, 2010, 10:48:10 pm
A not-barn owl between Bourne End and the next village at about 5 am on the last stretch of the Severn Across. It was sitting on the kerb, looked at me, realised I was quite close and flew off.

(Amazing wldlife identification, I know, but it was dark and I was tired)

Bourne End in Bucks? If so, were you heading West, towards Marlow?

East, from Marlow, through Bourne End to, erm, erm... Broadthingy? (It's been a long sleepless weekend...)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 25 April, 2010, 11:04:39 pm
2 Black Woodpeckers.

Thought they were crows or something when flying but were clearly woodpeckers when they landed on a tree.  Hadn't realised they were so big!  Usually tend to see Great Spotted Woodpeckers around the local forest.
They are BIG, aren't they?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 26 April, 2010, 12:42:10 am
A very good view of a buzzard soaring over Stambridge Mills, less than 3 miles from Southend Town Centre.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 27 April, 2010, 02:22:32 pm
A rust coloured stoat or weasel, whichever is the larger.

This snake, which I think is an adder rather than a grass snake. It had been run over, which I didn't realise until I'd taken the picture, and was still alive so I dispatched it with a blow from lock.  :'(
(http://www.delthebike.ukfsn.org/images/snake.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 27 April, 2010, 02:28:54 pm
With that pale patch on it's neck it looks more like a grass snake.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 27 April, 2010, 02:37:28 pm
With that pale patch on it's neck it looks more like a grass snake.
I've never seen either in the flesh and I thought the bright flash was a warning so my first thought was adder as I know they bite. That's why I didn't pick it up until I had killed it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 April, 2010, 02:40:12 pm
Yes, a grass snake.

I haven't seen one for a few years. Last year my brother came across one his his garden. It was almost certainly newly-hatched and he took some video of it which resides on his mobile phone. I'll see if Dez can put it on general release when we are next adjacent.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 27 April, 2010, 02:41:54 pm
I once saw a bird of prey take a grass snake from the verge on the side of a road. It flew off with the snake wriggling in its talons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 29 April, 2010, 09:39:03 pm
These are remarkably difficult to get pictures of. Their speed reflects their name.. The two pictures are taken at about 0.3 sec apart. Cropped so you see pretty much the full resolution shot on a 135/2.8 manual lens at f5.6 with a flash. I'll try and do better at the weekend.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3123/4564087718_c8f3386d4a_b.jpg)
(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3188/4564088386_c2306267d3_b.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 29 April, 2010, 09:53:07 pm
That's early for Dundee ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 29 April, 2010, 09:59:24 pm
I'm presuming there are no young yet as they weren't in and out the wholetime. Will try again at the weekend if the weather is good to get some better photos.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 29 April, 2010, 10:06:26 pm
What is it David?
edit: [oh sorry, I just got it]  :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 29 April, 2010, 11:07:02 pm
Swifts. Fantastic birds and very hard to capture.

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 30 April, 2010, 08:17:44 pm
A pair of redstarts on an extended commute home, I also had great close views of an otter fishing on the River Usk earlier in the week, but as that wasn't today I can't boast about it here...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 30 April, 2010, 09:50:49 pm
(http://i114.photobucket.com/albums/n275/yellowhammer_01/08%20herps/blackadderbredhurst03.jpg)

I was going to ask what that was but I can see it in the filename... how interesting, where do you find them all?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 01 May, 2010, 09:07:28 am
Heard yesterday, rather than seen today... first swifts of the year.
Wind must have been right, and it was warm with plenty of bugs in the evening.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 01 May, 2010, 11:56:54 am
Seen yesterday from the train. West of Chichester, male marsh harrier.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 01 May, 2010, 01:07:30 pm
Some say sparrows are on the decline. That is because they are all in my garden.

You can get very close if you stand still enough (about 10ft away).

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4052/4567341335_b70bc53e09_b.jpg)
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4010/4567973430_ae7c61460b_b.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 01 May, 2010, 05:27:14 pm
House martins - been around for a while here.

A pair of long-tailed tits collecting feathers (ex-pigeon) from on & under my blackcurrant bush. Nesting material, I presume.

A dead fox on the A4074 this morning. Looked freshly dead & young. Didn't learn about cars fast enough.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 02 May, 2010, 11:37:55 am
Cycling along the road near Dartford by myself on the FNRttC, when I had left the TEC group behind (dealing with yet another flat, unknown to me), and the main body of the ride was probably over half an hour ahead at the halfway stop.  Lots and lots of bunnies along the edge of the road, I guess the main ride would have scared them, but a single cyclist didn't really pose much of a threat.

Not particularly unique, but I haven't seen any bunnies up close for quite a while, normally the activities of the day scares them off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 02 May, 2010, 05:43:39 pm
A pair of buzzards sweeping low over the A30 at the junction for St. Brewards
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 02 May, 2010, 07:31:33 pm
Yesterday, two red squirrels in a wood just north of Glenfarg
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 02 May, 2010, 09:30:12 pm
The local magpies are feeding their young. Having eaten all the young blackbirds in the area they are now chasing adult starlings all around the place.

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 04 May, 2010, 06:40:22 pm
Three buzzards on St.Keverne beacon
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 04 May, 2010, 07:39:15 pm
A barn(?) owl on Saturday afternoon, near Melton Mowbray. It flew over our heads and landed in an oak tree by tthe side of the road,  blending in very well.  It took off as I was digging my camera out.

Saw a hare haring across a field a bit later.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 May, 2010, 09:48:03 pm
That is so beautiful
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 06 May, 2010, 02:33:33 pm
Yesterday evening as I was leaving Dunmow by car, five fox cubs playing in the road. Very sweet!

Today as I went to feed next door's hens - a dead hedgehog caught in the electric fence around their pen and presumably killed by the shock. It was quite difficult to extricate it from the fence as it had stuck its head through. Very sad to see it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 06 May, 2010, 03:56:07 pm
That is so beautiful

Isn't it? I do have a bit of a thing for hawkmoths, albeit tinged with a curiosity about what they'd taste like. Nutty, I'd think. ;)
How do you know what Nutty tastes like?  ???
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 06 May, 2010, 06:13:01 pm
A white deer by the railway line a little south of Three Bridges
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mattc on 06 May, 2010, 06:23:12 pm
Lapwings. Seen a week apart in farmed fields.
Last weekend, south of Hay-on-Wye, 5mins ahead of Arabella.
Previous weekend, somewhere in Hants, with Scottlington and Manotea.

The Audax bird!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 06 May, 2010, 08:07:19 pm
On St. Keverne beacon a moorhen & several chicks waddling along the road,in primary :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 07 May, 2010, 08:33:14 am
Yesterday I saw a green wagtail in Battersea Park. :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 07 May, 2010, 06:24:44 pm
a buzzard over Manhay near Falmouth
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 07 May, 2010, 06:50:35 pm
We saw loads of those today as well. We also saw a duck with 11 ducklings.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 10 May, 2010, 12:41:19 am
Couple of pics taken by my 11yo this weekend whilst looking for wildlife along the local ex-railway path.

(http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1190/4593724812_16d9615abc_b.jpg)
(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3479/4593726856_a873df825a_b.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 May, 2010, 08:36:21 am
That black adder was one of my favourites - he had just finished shedding his skin when I found him and looked absolutely mint, so black he was almost purple.

I was going to ask where you got the blue-rinse viper from. I thought she had been confined to the dustbin of history in 1990. ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 14 May, 2010, 09:04:55 pm
Numerous rodents, mostly a light chocolatey brown sprinting across the path, most being about 1inch long.

Another squirrel... (actually seen yesterday)...

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4052/4604394646_88daa98499.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/47663483@N00/4604394646/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 15 May, 2010, 11:45:58 am
Saw a blue tit in the back garden looking for spiders under the roof overhang of the shed. I've never seen one here before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 15 May, 2010, 12:02:51 pm
A fecking mosquito which was mainlining into a vein in the back of my left hand until I felt a sharp stab of pain and crushed the little git, but not before she had relieved me of a considerable quantity of blood, which exploded all over my fingers.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: anth on 15 May, 2010, 08:00:58 pm
(http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1392/4608930685_8f70d481be.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4026/4590934569_7fce165282.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 15 May, 2010, 09:48:56 pm
Ooh, nice sqrl pic :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 16 May, 2010, 08:09:14 am
Yesterday, spent a happy 15 minutes or so winding up a cuckoo. I cuckooed back at it and it came to find me. Mrs. Wow and I had concealed ourselves under a hawthorn bush.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 16 May, 2010, 12:15:00 pm
you can still pull the birds then Wow ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 16 May, 2010, 06:33:27 pm
Even more rodents in the forest.  Never seen so many.

And 1 Slow Worm (I think).  It was maybe 15-20cm long 5mm diameter and "snakelike", but had white marks behind its head.  Slithering across the path through the forest, and nearly squished it on the bike. Had stopped for a 30sec breather and literally 30cm from my wheel was this virtually camouflaged creature.

edit:  +1 squirrel
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 16 May, 2010, 07:55:00 pm
We can haz sqrl pic too. It wasn't very close, so apologies for crapness...

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4033/4612600420_6dc71076b8_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Noodley on 16 May, 2010, 11:48:40 pm
I had the company of a Roe deer running along a few yards in front of me today for about 100 yards until it could get off the roadside and into a field...I didn't have time to reach into my rear pocket and get my camera phone to take a picture  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 17 May, 2010, 09:56:07 pm
Three black swans seen in a mile of Thames, each with at least one cygnet.

And here is one of them -
(http://i432.photobucket.com/albums/qq48/Bledlow/IMG_0181.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: onb on 18 May, 2010, 09:44:14 am
Yesterday saw  pair of crows trying to harras a  Heron ,later on saw a vey scabby looking fox .Greenfinches fighting in hedgerows .
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 18 May, 2010, 12:35:35 pm
Saw my first swifts of the year at the weekend.

Dolphins in the harbour yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 18 May, 2010, 01:36:35 pm
Lesser whitethroat on the way into work this morning, first one of the year. :)
Haven't seen a lesser w/throat in years!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 18 May, 2010, 02:18:37 pm
Heron, stood on the riverbank by the office as I walked in from the station this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Flying_Monkey on 18 May, 2010, 03:08:35 pm
On my run this morning, I saw: a raccoon, several white-tail deer, a heron, a pair of orioles, and the young raven that one of our neighbours is hand-rearing after it fell out of its nest! It is really rather big, but it sits on her shoulder and takes meat from her hand. The parents are still around and come feed it too. It's almost ready to fly off...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 19 May, 2010, 07:05:35 am
A toad, I think, ambling across the road. Dark brown, warty, and driving an old vintage car. Ok, I lied about the last bit.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 19 May, 2010, 09:02:35 am
Yeah, it was a white van, wasn't it? ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 19 May, 2010, 10:03:08 am
I'd believe it if you had said he was riding a bike ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 20 May, 2010, 12:54:51 pm
Lesser whitethroat on the way into work this morning, first one of the year. :)
Haven't seen a lesser w/throat in years!

Saw a marsh warbler on the way home, in the same place! :smug:

 :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 20 May, 2010, 11:46:19 pm
(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/7791-2/DSC05269.JPG)

The biggest slow worm I've ever seen. About 18" long I reckon. That's Auntie Helen's hand just before it was bitten off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 21 May, 2010, 09:10:13 am
That's a big fella.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 21 May, 2010, 11:07:43 am
What a beauty!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 May, 2010, 08:23:01 pm
That's a whopper of a slowie WB. :) Did you find it out on the crawl or under cover?

Lots of grass snakes about early this morning, and a female broad-bodied chaser was ovipositing in my pond as the male patrolled above her.

It was in the path in front of us. I saw it and shouted "Stopping!". Fortunately AH also avoided running it over.

When I picked it up (by the upper body so that it shouldn't shed its tail) it became very lively and I plonked it in the undergrowth.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 May, 2010, 09:40:44 pm
(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/7798-5/DSC05277.JPG)

It's a bit noisy in our garden at the moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 21 May, 2010, 09:45:32 pm
It's a feline taunter!

"I blow my nose at you, you so called Dog.

I meow in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries".
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JonBuoy on 22 May, 2010, 12:25:08 am
Two smallish looking badgers scurrying along the bridleway making grunting noises at 2330 tonight.  They both dived down the big hole that I had narrowly missed cycling into earlier on in the evening.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Aidan on 22 May, 2010, 05:45:22 pm
Barn Owl hunting over the fields  about 10.30 this morning. See these fairly regularly, I reckon I've seen 3 or 4 this year, all in daylight.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 23 May, 2010, 05:48:24 pm
Heard a sparrowhawk making its "ki-ki-ki" noise. There was a lot of commotion in a willow tree and said sparrowhawk emerged with something tit-sized in its talons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 23 May, 2010, 05:57:39 pm
4 red kites at very low level, just beginning to spiral up on a thermal over the road, somewhere in deepest west-Wales :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mattc on 23 May, 2010, 10:17:00 pm
On Wednesday we had to swerve round a pretty big snake (rural Oxon Thames flood plain). Must check some pictures to ID it. It was big enough to put the wind up 2 of us!

This morning's club ride was  plagued by squirrels acting like sheep i.e. running down the road away from us instead of simply stepping into the hedgerow. Odd.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 23 May, 2010, 11:20:05 pm
Yesterday we saw a buzzard flying off with its lunch, looked like a wee rabbit or possibly a rat. It was holding its noms in the aerodynamic fashion that ospreys carry fish.

Also saw a brown hare  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 May, 2010, 12:19:28 am
Went badger watching with my brother. He often sees badgers in daylight, from quite close range.

We saw one badger at 8.35 - well before sunset. The trouble was that it either saw or smelt us and that was the end of that, apart from an hour being eaten alive by mosquitoes and shredded by thorn bushes.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 24 May, 2010, 08:21:56 am
Oooh yes, badgers

I was just turning into our drive on Saturday night at about 10:30, coming home from the Teifi Traveller, when I saw a pair of half-grown badgers playing in the road :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 24 May, 2010, 05:29:22 pm
Went badger watching with my brother. He often sees badgers in daylight, from quite close range. ...

Don't worry Wow, the Somerset Kamikaze Badgers will be out in force for the Solstice WARTY (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=32300.0) in a few weeks time. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 24 May, 2010, 06:23:34 pm
Went badger watching with my brother. He often sees badgers in daylight, from quite close range. ...

Don't worry Wow, the Somerset Kamikaze Badgers will be out in force for the Solstice WARTY (http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=32300.0) in a few weeks time. ;D

Not neccesarily. Our new Govt has authorised a cull. The conservatives will shoot 'em and the lib-dems will stroke their heads afterward (TM ChrisS)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 01 June, 2010, 01:43:21 pm
Not so much today, rather over the weekend on the North Yorkshire Moors: cuckoo and curlews waking us in our tents at 3.30am and a lunchtime snipe sitting on top of a roadside cross in the middle of absolutely nowhere (well, near Ralph Crosses up above the head of Rosedale).  Racing pigeons skimming low over the heather near Fylingdales.  Lapwings cartwheeling above Chimney Bank.  A grouse thinking about crossing a busy road at Hasty Bank and thinking better of it. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Regulator on 01 June, 2010, 02:03:08 pm
A juvenile Greater Spotted Woodpecker in our back garden this morning...

...or rather on our fence.  It seems to have realised that small insects live in the little gaps between the planks and the crossmember.  It was hopping along the crossmember and sticking its beak into the gaps.

I do hope it becomes a regular visitor.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Flying_Monkey on 01 June, 2010, 09:11:30 pm
Turkey vultures! I didn't think they bred on the island, but they do apparently. They are massive!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RichForrest on 01 June, 2010, 09:18:54 pm
On Sat' night on my way to Wetherby
4 owls, flying alongside me
1 badger, run across the road to get out the way
1 deer, stood in the road then bounded across the field and over the stream

Great to watch  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 01 June, 2010, 11:56:07 pm
The weekend's fare:

Aberdeenshire red kite, dipper, brown hare, red deer in a field in Tongue, buzzards, some seals, unidentified terns. At a cake shop, bolshy siskins, red squirrel, GSW, 3 varieties of tit.

And a male chaffinch which seem to have fungus growing on its left foot & on its left leg and it was missing its left eye - creepy looking.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 02 June, 2010, 07:47:18 am
The weekend's fare:

Aberdeenshire red kite, dipper, brown hare, red deer in a field in Tongue, buzzards, some seals, unidentified terns. At a cake shop, bolshy siskins, red squirrel, GSW, 3 varieties of tit.

And a male chaffinch which seem to have fungus growing on its left foot & on its left leg and it was missing its left eye - creepy looking.

we get them hereabouts too:often seen driving motor cars ::-)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rafletcher on 03 June, 2010, 01:50:34 pm
Our Bluebird chicks taking their first interest in the outside world - so expect them to fledge today or tomorrow  8)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 04 June, 2010, 04:11:21 pm
A rat. Nothing surprising there, see a few every day (alive and dead), but this one didn't run away when I approached. It also had two large wounds on its left hind-quarters. Perhaps it had rabies???!!!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 05 June, 2010, 02:02:37 pm
A praying mantis, flying around our room last night then jumping from wall to wall. Soon it settled down and we spent a good while fascinated by its pupils visible behind horizontal slits - don't know whether you can call them eyelids - in the bulbous eyes, its mouth opening and closing as if eating - but if it was eating it had caught something too small for the human eye; a mite, maybe? - and then cleaning its front limbs, and its antennae waving asymmetrically in the air.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 05 June, 2010, 02:46:26 pm
Riding down the cycle track from Gatwick, by the fetid Gatwick Stream, on the new smooooooth tarmac, to Crawley. Firstly, a goldcrest, hopping out of a bush to sit on a wire fence for me to watch, and then, of all things, a full-throttle nightingale.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 05 June, 2010, 05:10:50 pm
Black swan with three cygnets. Approached by a dog while we were feeding them. The mother backed off slightly, ushered the cygnets behind her, & adopted a threatening pose. The dog dithered a bit, then cocked its leg in her direction. Well! Nice bit of body language, eh?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 05 June, 2010, 10:26:17 pm
Just now, in my garden: an entire squadron of frogs  ??? Maybe a dozen or so, in my bone-dry garden with no water that I know of within the area. What's going on?  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 05 June, 2010, 10:34:08 pm
Just now, in my garden: an entire squadron of frogs  ??? Maybe a dozen or so, in my bone-dry garden with no water that I know of within the area. What's going on?  ;D

Next up:  lice  :o

Plagues of Egypt - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plagues_of_Egypt)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 06 June, 2010, 09:27:39 am
On the way to work today, a badja.
Unfortunately, supine in the road.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 06 June, 2010, 10:01:27 am
I went past that at about 0800 ish. When I went past the other way on the way home a bit later it had gone.

But I did see a couple of (live) deer in the field where they keep the ILS thingy.

(for non locals, this is a field a stone's throw from the end of the runway at Gatwick)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 06 June, 2010, 11:43:49 am
But I did see a couple of (live) deer in the field where they keep the ILS thingy.

This should be made Technical Speak.

ATC: "Turn left heading 290, report established with the ILS thingy."  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 06 June, 2010, 12:03:50 pm
Not today but last week, on the Rhein & Mosel:

Lots of Black Kites

Quite a few black redstarts

Numerous fieldfares from close range: these threw me because they only visit Britain in the winter but are resident in Germany

Lots of a type of goose I couldn't identify positively but probably white-fronted geese

Two black-winged stilts.

We also heard loads of nightingales, one of which we saw.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 06 June, 2010, 03:25:52 pm
Heron in Grove Park, Carshalton, posing beautifully at the top of an ornamental cascade.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 06 June, 2010, 08:03:49 pm
A partridge trying to hide from me in the grass by the road near Pyecombe.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Fi on 08 June, 2010, 10:03:33 am
Tit fledglings being fed by parent(s) on the feeders.  Three male blackbirds fighting over the ground food table, now taking it in turns to feed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 10 June, 2010, 10:53:20 pm
A swallow in two pieces on the road, legs & feet missing  :-X
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 June, 2010, 08:59:36 am
A couple of days ago, the very amusing sight of three male mallards attempting to mate with one female.

She seemed to be well up for it, but every time one of the males tried to mount her, another would jump on his back and peck him in the head. These two would then have a bit of a scrap whilst the female quacked loudly, along with the third male, who perhaps was more of a voyeur than a participant. This went on for quite some time until a fifth bird in the form of a carrion crow swooped down and had a go at one of the mallards, whereupon all four flew off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 15 June, 2010, 02:17:18 pm
A rather belated report, delayed by some uncertainty about the identity of the birds in question.  On the ride from Oxford to Acton on Saturday morning, at about 4.00 at a guess, we were passing through the Colne Valley among the gravel pits when I spied a number of birds behaving in a very distinctively predatory fashion, hawking round the trees in the half light, as if hunting insects.  At the time I suggested they might be nightjars but I rather dismissed this, as I'd always thought of them as heathland birds.  However, advice from birdy colleagues and family members leaves me with little doubt that we'd seen nightjars.

I've also learnt that the way to attract nightjars is to place a white handkerchief on the ground and clap your hands.  This may also attract constables.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 15 June, 2010, 08:07:31 pm
The blackbirds are bringing their offspring to my garden to feed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 16 June, 2010, 04:37:41 pm
A young chaffinch - in the hallway. I opened the back door for the dog an hour or so ago and the chaffinch must have flown in. We managed to waft it back towards the back door and I think it's gone out now. That's two birds this week I've had to rescue from indoors!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 16 June, 2010, 04:38:58 pm
A young badger running across the lane about half a mile from the village last night when I was coming home about 11:00pm.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 June, 2010, 02:14:10 pm
This in the garden today:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4011/4708354805_b9427bfcb2.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 17 June, 2010, 05:07:59 pm
A yellow wagtail and one chick on its nest which it had built right outside my sister-in-law's dining room window in a flower pot.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 18 June, 2010, 04:18:05 pm
Dolphins playing just off the beach in Mwnt.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 20 June, 2010, 07:25:11 am
Lots of birdies around the Welsh hills and valleys on an audax yesterday, highlights being 2 pairs of redstarts, a few tree pipits and a fat fairly freshly fledged dipper that was too full of river invert goodness to move as I slowly trundled/wheezed passed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: kevinp on 20 June, 2010, 08:20:34 am
Lots of wildlife seen yesterday, on the cotswold and thames i did.

Hairs seem to be getting more common again around my way as I saw at least half a dozen in the first couple of miles, along with a pair of monkjacks.  I also saw at least a dozen Kites flying over, I think it was Stadhampton all flying around together with one crow trying his best to scare them off.
In various other places I saw a kestrel swoop down in front of me and pick up a mouse or shrew, mother and young roe deer, baby roe deer sat on the side of the road.

And I got chased by three dogs at Sutton Benger, I was riding along the side of a big hedge and could hear this ticking sound, thinking that the rear mech was slightly out, when all of a sudden three dogs burst out of a drive way after me, the ticking was their claws on the tarmac ... that got the old heart working well though  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 20 June, 2010, 08:57:08 am


And I got chased by three dogs at Sutton Benger, I was riding along the side of a big hedge and could hear this ticking sound, thinking that the rear mech was slightly out, when all of a sudden three dogs burst out of a drive way after me, the ticking was their claws on the tarmac ... that got the old heart working well though  :)
[/quote]

Dog sprints are very good training you know. There used to be a farm in Radnorshire with lots of collies that I used to pass going downhill, great fun watching them trying to keep up at 30MPH :demon:, I never made the mistake of cycling the other way though as I'm not sure even a chemically infused Pantani could have beaten a psychotic collie up a steep hill.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 20 June, 2010, 04:06:28 pm
A half-tame juvenile blackbird, which keeps popping round. It seems a bit clueless, perhaps thrown out by its parents before quite ready, or maybe 'special needs', as Mrs B suggested. We're torn between making sure it's well fed & fear of it becoming dependent on us.

Mrs B had a close encounter with a kite in the back garden yesterday, while reading An Artist of the Floating World (her, not the kite). A shadow passed over, & she looked up to catch the eye of a very low-flying kite having a good look at her. It then glided away, presumably pissed off because she wasn't dead.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 20 June, 2010, 10:08:33 pm
Dozens of tiny frogs by the edge of Mallards Pike lake in the Forest of Dean:

(http://lh5.ggpht.com/_9Ae_dGIUcWs/TB6AI5Rjo9I/AAAAAAAAAmE/LaqEqMMMZ-o/s640/img_2528.jpg)

Sitting on a fingernail shows just how tiny they were:

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/_9Ae_dGIUcWs/TB6AWdcoCPI/AAAAAAAAAmI/LBtWr_ZryHM/s640/img_2546.jpg)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 20 June, 2010, 10:28:29 pm
awwwh!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 22 June, 2010, 08:03:42 am
A Sparrow Hawk on the back lawn, with a young Starling dinner.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tewdric on 23 June, 2010, 08:26:24 am
A shrew.  In my bedroom.  Being stared at by two crap cats who couldn't catch a cold in the arctic.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mr Larrington on 23 June, 2010, 11:39:55 am
A pair of marsh harriers getting some unwelcome attention from a crow.

Edit:  It's bird of prey city out there at the moment; the crow (or one of its mates) has just seen off the neighbourhood kestrel.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 26 June, 2010, 12:34:46 am
Corvids really aren't keen on any kind of raptor.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 29 June, 2010, 12:54:16 pm
Corvids really aren't keen on any kind of raptor.
Watching interactions between ravens and raptors is fun. Buzzards are attacked hard and fast, with furious flapping to gain height to stoop on the buzzard, who half rolls to present talons. On the other hand, goshawks....the ravens make a lot of noise, but do NOT dive in to make a physical attack.
Wonder why?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 29 June, 2010, 06:07:59 pm
30 Red Kites.

Can you guess which motorway I was on today?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 29 June, 2010, 07:40:33 pm
30 Red Kites.

Can you guess which motorway I was on today?

Yes
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 29 June, 2010, 08:20:59 pm
Thought as much.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 30 June, 2010, 03:45:51 pm
On Sunday I looked up in to the clear sky above my garden and  saw what I thought was a Cormorant , except that it was higher than you would expect and just cruising about on the air currents in a most un-Cormorant like manner.
As I watched the bird soared even higher , became a speck in the sky , then disappeared completely.
Can anybody think what bird might look like a Cormorant from below and behave like this.
I assume Cormorants could not fly like this and would have no reason to do so.

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 30 June, 2010, 06:00:22 pm
Heron?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 30 June, 2010, 08:15:50 pm
Soaring doesn't sound like a heron.
Crane?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 30 June, 2010, 08:43:49 pm
Heron and Crane (that would be great to see) have large wide wings and legs that stick out the back in flight. I didn't see legs , but the tail looked slightly fan-like .

Snake
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 30 June, 2010, 09:34:44 pm


Sitting on a fingernail shows just how tiny they were:

(http://lh4.ggpht.com/_9Ae_dGIUcWs/TB6AWdcoCPI/AAAAAAAAAmI/LBtWr_ZryHM/s640/img_2546.jpg)



Very tiny! Great photo's. Did you have wet hands for picking it up?

There's a reservoir near where I used to live and I came across a kilometre* long trail of toadlets along the reservoir wall and heading into the woods. They were slightly bigger than yours, nose to tail and three or four wide in some places. Thousands of em.

*checked on OS map at home.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 01 July, 2010, 09:15:27 am
Unlikely to be a raven in this area, and cormorants DO get quite high up. Was it soaring with still wings, or beating them at all? How were the wing beats? Did they look as if they were flicking back from the wrist?
One possibility is white stork. At height, it canlook very black and thus changes shape. I have seen them over Kent. The predominant whiteness can let them "disappear" when at the right angle to the light.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 01 July, 2010, 10:27:43 pm
Dead tortoise in the road 10ish miles south of Norwich. Very sad as my folks have a tortoise, Daisy, that they've had for 35ish years, and this one looked a similar size (i.e. very adult - Daisy is about 90 as far as we know).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 02 July, 2010, 08:30:12 am
Unlikely to be a raven in this area, and cormorants DO get quite high up. Was it soaring with still wings, or beating them at all? How were the wing beats? Did they look as if they were flicking back from the wrist?
One possibility is white stork. At height, it canlook very black and thus changes shape. I have seen them over Kent. The predominant whiteness can let them "disappear" when at the right angle to the light.

Thanks for the replies chaps.

TT , I did see a few wing beats at first but at that time I was convinced I was watching a cormorant. As it got higher the wing beats ceased.

It has occurred to me that it might just have been a largish gull , we get Herring and Lesser Blackbacked on the Thames near here , with its whiteness obscured by its distance from me.

I will keep my eyes aloft.

Snake
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 02 July, 2010, 10:49:09 am


Sitting on a fingernail shows just how tiny they were:

...

Very tiny! Great photo's. Did you have wet hands for picking it up?

...

Thanks - Canon Digital Ixus 75 in digital macro mode. I just put a finger down in front of one & it obediently hopped straight on, so no special handling required
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 04 July, 2010, 01:42:19 pm
A grass snake wot the cat dragged in:

(http://ivytodd.com/images/IMAG0042.jpg)

Bloody cats  >:(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 05 July, 2010, 02:01:06 am

Call that a snake?
THIS was a snake!
Road kill 200 yards from my front door. Glove in for scale

(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/6281/img0217jog.jpg)

(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/4049/img0218aob.jpg)


She was pregnant.
(http://img7.imageshack.us/img7/1313/img0219y.jpg)



Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 07 July, 2010, 10:54:13 am
A Sparrow Hawk on the back lawn, with a young Starling dinner.

Another sparrowhawk sighting - sitting in the top of the pyracantha at the bottom of the garden, in urban Bristol, for about 30s before flying off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 07 July, 2010, 08:53:39 pm
Another Red Kite. Yeah, yeah.

But this was over the M25, about 1 mile Heathrow-wards of J12.  Never seen them so close to London before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 08 July, 2010, 11:29:23 am
I saw a cormorant this morning.  In the midlands, 70 miles from the sea. :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 08 July, 2010, 11:51:26 am
They come up rivers in summer quite often. We get them at Kirkham which is about 25 miles from the sea regularly.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 08 July, 2010, 10:36:15 pm
Seen while in Soho Square Gardens: a raptor (looked like a falcon) hovering over Centre Point.  Stooped and killed.  Awesome.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 09 July, 2010, 09:54:15 pm
I saw a cormorant this morning.  In the midlands, 70 miles from the sea. :o
I've seen one recently within 10 miles of Meriden. It was before the pubs had opened ;). One of my fellow wildlife volunteers (a birder with a better eye for fauna than I can ever aspire to) has seen one or more at Draycote Water.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 11 July, 2010, 08:02:28 am
That's a very good list for a single visit, it must be one of those rare country parks that is managed for nice habitat rather than dog walkers.

From my own eyes 200+ km around the hills of S Wales covering many habitats yesterday yielded only about 20 bird species (raven, redstart and wheatear being about the most exciting), are our feathered friends moulting already?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Dinamo on 11 July, 2010, 10:40:30 am
(http://i229.photobucket.com/albums/ee253/ianrsparrow/DSC06418.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 11 July, 2010, 10:52:34 pm
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4123/4783783729_d2097f9491.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4142/4784419702_8964bc965d.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 11 July, 2010, 11:04:51 pm
A young badger (cub?) sort of fell out of a roadside hedgebank as we were riding through deepest Worcestershire this morning. It seemed a bit dazed, but obviously not too badly, since by the time we had stopped to look back it had disappeared. The hole that was presumably a sett entrance was thigh high, so it is presumably pretty good at climbing near-vertical banks
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 11 July, 2010, 11:58:03 pm
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4123/4783783729_d2097f9491.jpg)
Spear thistle?
Quote
(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4142/4784419702_8964bc965d.jpg)
Surely water lilies, but the amphibian in the foreground makes identification a bit difficult ;).

Superb photos btw. I've been told the name of the bumble bee this week, but have already forgotten.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 14 July, 2010, 02:34:59 pm
Just been clearing out the pond a bit. This little chap came up with a pile of weed.
(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y289/nicknacknick/IMG_0592.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 14 July, 2010, 06:30:12 pm
Also found in the pond was this. Antone any idea which dragonfly it's from? I've googled around but haven't found an exact match yet. It's about 5cm long.
(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y289/nicknacknick/IMG_0594_1.jpg)
(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y289/nicknacknick/IMG_0597_1.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 14 July, 2010, 08:50:39 pm
Ta. Yup there's plenty of stuff lives in there. But a bit less foliage now and a bit more room to swim.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 14 July, 2010, 09:06:59 pm
I've seen either a few of these, or the same one several times, recently, in my garden.

(http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3282/3118500135_2fbb9dc070.jpg)
Scarlet tiger moth
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 July, 2010, 08:32:01 pm
I saw a red kite today, which I spotted all by myself. I was embarrasingly excited about that.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 July, 2010, 08:56:41 pm
And a stoat - first one I've seen for ages  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 19 July, 2010, 09:31:14 am
Two buzzards (two separate occasions, may have been the same individual twice) flying just about 3 metres in front of me at head height. Very impressive.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 19 July, 2010, 10:09:49 am
I saw a red kite today, which I spotted all by myself. I was embarrasingly excited about that.

We saw loads of red kites this weekend.  It was wonderful.  We were near the Chilterns, so there is a large group of them living there, and its entirly unsurprising to spot several, but they are still magnificent every time.

I spent a lot of time watching a pied wagtail, which is probably my favourite bird.  And I was observing a load of ants.  Fascinating things.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 19 July, 2010, 12:18:05 pm
Mrs. Wow and I were treated to the amusing sight of two moorhens, both with their beaks stuffed with soggy bread, pootling across the park lake in convoy to deliver the swag to their chicks. It turned out they were not mates, as one was intercepted by its brood whilst the other continued for another 30 yards or so before being welcomed by four small black balls of fluff.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 19 July, 2010, 12:23:43 pm
Oh yes.  TGL spotted a moorhen chick - so tiny it was standing on a bent reed - in a village pond.  Moorhen feet are disproportionately big.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andygates on 19 July, 2010, 01:19:44 pm
A headless thing that unspooled a snakey neck to reveal a grumpy cormorant.  :)

Also menacing swans and jumping salmons!

Paddley paddley good.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 19 July, 2010, 08:14:08 pm
A pair of peregrine, one redstart and lots of ravens&spotted orchids in the sunshine between Abergavenny and Blaenavon. The local hobbies appeared to bug'd off to somewhere with more dragonflies though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 19 July, 2010, 10:25:25 pm
Yesterday afternoon near sharpthorne, first a doe and fawn crossing a forest track and then a group of about 1/2 doz, which may have included the first two, in the trees.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 21 July, 2010, 11:20:32 am
does seeing something in the newspaper count?
Forty-ton whale lands on yacht during Cape Town sailing trip  - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/7901247/Forty-ton-whale-lands-on-yacht-during-Cape-Town-sailing-trip.html)

probably be time for a new pair of shorts!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 21 July, 2010, 09:50:55 pm
does seeing something in the newspaper count?
Forty-ton whale lands on yacht during Cape Town sailing trip  - Telegraph (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/7901247/Forty-ton-whale-lands-on-yacht-during-Cape-Town-sailing-trip.html)

probably be time for a new pair of shorts!

Did you see the advert next to the story for a cheap pot of petunias?

..d
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 21 July, 2010, 09:51:53 pm
OK, seen on holiday. Took me a while to identify it having never seen one quite like this before.

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4080/4815781301_66303e71a8_b.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 21 July, 2010, 09:53:10 pm
They don't show them like that very often in the books ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 21 July, 2010, 10:25:43 pm
They don't show them like that very often in the books ...

.. or on the christmas cards..
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 21 July, 2010, 10:27:24 pm
They don't show them like that very often in the books ...

.. or on the christmas cards..

Well, they don't look like that at Christmas  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 21 July, 2010, 10:58:25 pm
While cycling from Turners Hill towards East Grinstead, the car driver in front slowed as a young deer wandered into the lane.

It was either not too bright, or scared of what was in the fields, as it kept trotting along the lane. The car driver put his hazards and we built up quite a tail back.

After about 400m a car came the other way. Faced with motors from both directions Bambi decided the fields weren't that frightening after all and scuttled off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 22 July, 2010, 12:28:09 am
A snake. Don't know what species. I only saw its black body/tail slithering away from me into the long grass at the roadside.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 22 July, 2010, 10:54:49 am
Wind-blown inner tube maybe?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 22 July, 2010, 11:58:19 am
The other side of the river to Düsseldorf:

(http://i738.photobucket.com/albums/xx30/Auntie_Helen/Duesseldorf%20Rides/DSCF5575.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 July, 2010, 12:47:39 pm
Bleedin' terrapin! in Priory Park!!  >:(
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 30 July, 2010, 09:13:55 am
Yellowhammer, I want to go for walks with you.  You spot such fascinating things.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 30 July, 2010, 11:30:53 am
Two young blackbirds have been skulking under my blackcurrant bush for the last few days. It's a good hiding place, shielded by other plants at the front, wall at the back & one side, & the compost bin on the other side. A couple of adults turn up sometimes, usually one at a time, to help them feed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 July, 2010, 02:21:43 pm
Yellowhammer, I want to go for walks with you.  You spot such fascinating things.

You've scored.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 30 July, 2010, 02:27:32 pm
Cheeky fellow! ;D

I just see things which get categorised as: Insect, bee, ant, butterfly, caterpillar, dragonfly (or is it a damselfly?), frog (maybe toad, now I think about it), snake - or slow worm, they're not snakes at all, are they?  But they look like one to me... :-\  etc etc.

So much more intersting to know Stuff about what you see.  I used to have a partner who was an expert on botany.  She knew common and Latin names for all sorts of things, and could spot the differences between plants I thought were identical (and the link between ones I thought were different).  Of course, it went in one ear and out the other, and I was left thinking 'Ooh! Pretty blue flower' or whatever, but it was nice that someone knew.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 30 July, 2010, 02:46:54 pm
I'm about up with Clarion when it comes to the identifying stuff lark. Going around with someone who Knows Their Stuff is a wonder.  TT was brilliant at the Barnes Wetland place last year (ooh, we must go again). My chums Frank and Bob are also ded gud at the birdy stuff. And my friend Nic has an utterly amazing blog (http://www.londondailynaturephoto.co.uk/) of London Nature Photos.

Dragging the thread back on topic, cycling home yesterday I saw a female Mallard (duck, not steam powered loco) legging it down the road, pursued by a bear young fox.  I'm guessing the fox had already had a go at the duck, reducing its flight capabilities. The fox ran off when I got too close.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 30 July, 2010, 06:17:31 pm
Today on my way to work I saw either a weasel or a stoat. First time I've seen one and I don't know which it was! I know that one is weasily recognised and the other is stoatally different, but the sun was behind it and it was some distance away so I didn't get a good view. I think it's face was a bit stubbier than stoaty so maybe a weasel.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wascally Weasel on 30 July, 2010, 06:26:28 pm
Today on my way to work I saw either a weasel or a stoat. First time I've seen one and I don't know which it was! I know that one is weasily recognised and the other is stoatally different, but the sun was behind it and it was some distance away so I didn't get a good view. I think it's face was a bit stubbier than stoaty so maybe a weasel.

Weasel:

(http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b187/vicechair/Stoves/2ef12183.jpg)

Stoat:

(http://img.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2007/10_04/shellwild3L25140_800x655.jpg)

Hope this helps   ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 31 July, 2010, 10:13:17 pm
Heaps of buzzards (boring I know, but they were all pretty low down today), a kestrel, an osprey and 7 seals.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 02 August, 2010, 12:24:21 pm
About 7 (I think) dolphin a couple of hundred meters offshore, surfing the boat's wake near Nissaki, Corfu. They really do give every appearance of doing it for fun.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 02 August, 2010, 01:54:18 pm
They do it on porpoise.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 02 August, 2010, 02:31:24 pm
They do it on porpoise.

You are Aperitif AICMFP
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 02 August, 2010, 02:46:13 pm
About 7 (I think) dolphin a couple of hundred meters offshore, surfing the boat's wake near Nissaki, Corfu. They really do give every appearance of doing it for fun.

Having a whale of a time.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 03 August, 2010, 11:28:24 pm
A pipistrelle or similar bat. Flying around inside the South Terminal baggage reclaim.....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 August, 2010, 03:24:47 pm
Wesaw lots of stuff this weekend.

Watlington did its own brand of turning something fabulously magical like red kites into something so familiar and everyday ;D

And there were the pied wagtails, too.  They're always pretty.

Late at night, as we were heading for bed, Butterfly heard a noise behind our tent, and we found a little hedgehog feasting on the watermelon discarded by the teenagers.  Sadly, after a few seconds thinking about it, it walked off into the hedge.  We both reflected that it was a long time since we've seen hedgehogs, which seem to have been much more common in our youth.

Saturday night was also when I saw an owl swoop silently over the next field.  I'd hoped to see bats too, but not this weekend, I'm afraid.

Next day, when folk had gone, the bunnies crept back out onto the field.  I'm sure many campers will have encountered their little holes, or their leavings.  But they tend to stay in the lower field when there are campers about.

later, over the Chilterns, a bunny considered jumping into our front wheel, but I am pleased to say it reconsidered.

We saw a weasel, too, near Turville, but it was unfortunately less alive than the optimum. :(

Approaching the campsite in the unpromising position of being next to the M4, under the Heathrow flightpath, and in between Slough & Maidenhead, Butterfly noticed a small group of deer grazing in a field.  They were still there later, when we popped out shopping in the dark, and at least one was there the next morning when we set off.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 04 August, 2010, 03:53:44 pm
On Monday I also saw a Kingfisher over the Thames near Hambledon Lock. It was magical, but Clarion was piloting and missed it. He did see the baby heron though. There were also some fabulous butterflies up towards Christmas Common and a heap of baby moorhens in a nest somewhere.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 04 August, 2010, 03:54:36 pm
All that lot, too! :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 05 August, 2010, 09:53:32 pm
These

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/deers_1.jpg)

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/deers_2.jpg)

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/deers_3.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 06 August, 2010, 09:16:50 am
Amazing pictures. I particularly like the last one where one has his head cocked to one side looking at you.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 06 August, 2010, 01:13:00 pm
Stag party  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 06 August, 2010, 03:54:53 pm
The one with his head cocked is saying, "Is it a gun? I'm not sure, it could just be a camera. I think it's a camera." and the ones in the background are saying "F*ck that - we're off, it could be a gun!".
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 07 August, 2010, 06:43:38 pm
I like the way he seems to be squinting, with one eye shut.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 08 August, 2010, 04:49:26 am
I like the way he seems to be squinting, with one eye shut.
He has a rechambered 7.62 SMLE rifle in that long grass and is drawing a bead......
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 08 August, 2010, 09:57:41 am
Sticklebacks.

I hadn't seen any for years, but recently, one of our dog walks, an ornamental garden with waterfall and artificial stream which had not been working for years, has seen the council turn the pump back on. The stream and the small pools are teeming with 10-spined sticklebacks. Quite nostalgic.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 08 August, 2010, 10:48:47 am
Last week in Germany (Düsseldorf) I think I saw a Nuthatch - is that likely?

On Friday, when out riding with Redfalo (who has just joined this forum) and his wife around Great Bromley we watched a stoat dragging a dead mouse across the road. Or its baby, or something. A stoat dragging something across the road. I said to Redfalo, "You'll never see that in London..."
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 08 August, 2010, 11:53:50 am
Momonga - Japanese dwarf flying squirrels. Seen by Mrs B at Nikko the last couple of nights. Japanese cuteness personified.

(http://cuteoverload.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/momonga.jpg)

(http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRbt_PBGrYk5-NyKgQOWLX0Tg1Cja1hnr9CNmsFfxJ8Wa80kWY&t=1&usg=__PqUkx42TGoMeyBpVJxRXdVNNy4Q=)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jord on 08 August, 2010, 01:09:27 pm
On Holiday in Poolewe last week and from the cottage window we watched seals, otters, herons, various waders and an owl. Every time we looked out the window Loch Ewe looked different. Magical.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 08 August, 2010, 05:52:20 pm
Moved a tray in that had been left to dry in the garden.
Small slow worm under it.  Not slow at all when I tried to get hold of it to move it to a safer place!

We know they're in the garden, but we don't see them that often.

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 08 August, 2010, 06:01:15 pm
A stoat in the garden

Since Big Cat died the voles & woodmice populations have exploded; they used to be confined to the undergrowth and shrubberies, but now their holes are all over the grass.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 08 August, 2010, 06:09:19 pm
Since Big Cat died the voles & woodmice populations have exploded; they used to be confined to the undergrowth and shrubberies, but now their holes are all over the grass.

Once the junior team are allowed out, that unconcerned bunch of rodents will become a rapid training exercise in tracking and hunting. :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 08 August, 2010, 09:05:32 pm
Last week in Germany (Düsseldorf) I think I saw a Nuthatch - is that likely?

Don't see why not. The only one I've ever seen was in Bamberg.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 08 August, 2010, 09:41:44 pm
We get them on our seed feeders.  Lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 09 August, 2010, 12:12:41 am
Yesterday, while I was descending N. towards Shipton under Wychwood, a roe deer shot across the road about 2m in front of me. There was a memorable crunch of hooves on  loose stones as it kicked off from the roadside. I was mightily relieved that I hadn't arrived half a second earlier. I don't know much about deer, but it had the start of antlers about the size of its ears.

I'd had a similar encounter, but at a more comfortable 10m distance, around Basingstoke, riding S. last Monday.

Are roe deer common in those areas?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 09 August, 2010, 12:19:00 am
I think nuthatches are more common in West England 7 Wales than they are in the south-east although I have seen them in Hockley Woods, about 5 miles form Southend.

A pal of mine who lives in mid-Wales showed me his old post box, the slot of which had been sealed up with mud, except for a small hole. He quizzed me as to what it was, and I think he was quite surprised when I identified it as a nuthatch's nest.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 09 August, 2010, 12:23:36 am
Last week in Germany (Düsseldorf) I think I saw a Nuthatch - is that likely?

They're not uncommon around here - West Midlands suburbia. We have had them on our feeders, though not observed in the last couple of years. I've identified more by sound than sight.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 09 August, 2010, 11:53:50 pm
They're very common round here as well as in Central and Eastern Europe. I think of their call as sounding a bit electronic.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 10 August, 2010, 04:27:56 pm
.. Shipton under Wychwood, a roe deer ...

I'd had a similar encounter, but at a more comfortable 10m distance, around Basingstoke, riding S. last Monday.

Are roe deer common in those areas?
Yes. They're common over the whole region. When commuting by train from Reading to Basingstoke, Newbury, & Oxford, at various times, I saw them very frequently, sometimes multiple sightings in one trip.

I've often seen them when out on the bike, sometimes crossing the road, & I once had a near miss as close as yours, when one roe deer leapt across the road in front of Adrian Lawson, & another between Adrian & me, near Beenham (a bit west of Reading). Luckily, my bowels were already empty.

Several witnesses to that near miss. It was a Reading CTC Wednesday evening ride, a few years ago.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 16 August, 2010, 09:42:20 pm
Out today I saw this poor chap with 'angel wings' , for details see wikipedia or similar.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/205473/dd8168ee7/Egyptian1c.jpg)

Snake

 My Library  (http://www.yudu.com/library/6690/Snakehips-s-Library)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: red marley on 17 August, 2010, 07:41:59 pm
Not quite in the wild, but I made friends with a European Eagle Owl during this weekend's cycling tour of the Cotswolds.

(http://www.soi.city.ac.uk/~jwo/acf/JoOwl2010.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 August, 2010, 08:39:08 pm
Ace

I love Eagle Owls :)

Damn big feet

Where was that ? Cotswold Wildlife Park ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: red marley on 17 August, 2010, 09:45:45 pm
It was the Batsford Falconry Centre (http://www.cotswold-falconry.co.uk) (beware atrocious web site design).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 18 August, 2010, 02:03:06 pm
Ace

I love Eagle Owls :)

Damn big feet

Where was that ? Cotswold Wildlife Park ?

They are devvil birdz  ;)  (according to some, anyway ...)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 18 August, 2010, 10:04:20 pm
Not today I'm afraid but I've only just uploaded from the camera: a pair of keas by the entrance to the Homer Tunnel near Milford Sound
(http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f130/PaulRide/kea.jpg)
and a pesky turkey outside my sister-in-law's house
(http://i46.photobucket.com/albums/f130/PaulRide/bushturkey.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 20 August, 2010, 08:21:19 am
Quite a lot of dead frogs this morning on the cummute. Not in the same numbers as springtime froggy-goes-a-courtin'-getting-run-over numbers.  It may be the start of a compressed plague season because last night we had the flooding.  Or maybe that was somehow the cause of the frog slaughter.  Most were fat, rather than flat, so had not been run over.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 20 August, 2010, 08:47:01 pm
I had forgotten the Secondary Slaughter that is late summer.

It was a warm, humid and wet morning here. By the time I went out at 9am, the roads were a froggy carnage  :(.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 22 August, 2010, 01:40:44 pm
A flock of long-tailed tits, foraging in bushes beside the path we were walking along this morning. We stopped to watch them, & once we'd been standing still for a couple of minutes they ignored us, perching within feet of us making soft churring noises, & flying past very close.

Mrs B thinks they're cute.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: toekneep on 23 August, 2010, 07:11:22 am
These two were in an orchard belonging to a B&B. They were wild but not too scared to run away. The foal was bouncing around like Tigger most of the time.

(http://lh6.ggpht.com/_aF252wVgwes/THF8QiByc8I/AAAAAAAAEvo/cP4u06MB2GY/s800/22082010180.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 August, 2010, 06:33:40 pm
This:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4116/4924126770_80c5500113_z.jpg)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4094/4923530763_10579e621f_z.jpg)

Edited to add:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4076/4924260228_52ae4d0d14_m.jpg)

 ???
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: red marley on 24 August, 2010, 06:44:26 pm
Shield bug (http://www.glaucus.org.uk/Bugs.html)?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 August, 2010, 06:47:09 pm
I had one of those on my arm in Wales last week. Pretty alarming when you don't actually feel it there but just look down and see it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 24 August, 2010, 07:17:54 pm
Shield bug (http://www.glaucus.org.uk/Bugs.html)?

Indeed, possibly the Forest bug (http://www.britishbugs.org.uk/heteroptera/Pentatomidae/pentotoma_rufipes.html).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 August, 2010, 11:26:04 pm
Last Saturday week actually: Charlotte and I were looking at some corvids near Mwnt and I couldn't be sure whether they were jackdaws or the rarer orange-billed coast-dwelling variety.

Charlotte's remark?
(click to show/hide)

Shocked, I was.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 26 August, 2010, 05:13:17 pm
An hour or less ago, camouflaged in the vine:

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4139/4929153597_1d4cfc8315_b.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 26 August, 2010, 09:25:02 pm
Just now a barn owl screeching away on the telegraph pole just outside our garden.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 30 August, 2010, 05:44:45 pm
Yesterday, on a bridlepath near Alfriston, a small sidewinding snake, which was too quick for me to rescue my phone from my pack.  He was no more than 5 inches long, a very dark green with a cream-coloured band just behind his head.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 30 August, 2010, 09:32:28 pm
Just now a barn owl screeching away on the telegraph pole just outside our garden.

We had a little owl in our plum tree yesterday morning, in broad daylight

It seemed quite happy
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 30 August, 2010, 10:26:03 pm
On Saturday a kestrel flew over our house  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 August, 2010, 10:52:31 pm
Yesterday, on a bridlepath near Alfriston, a small sidewinding snake, which was too quick for me to rescue my phone from my pack.  He was no more than 5 inches long, a very dark green with a cream-coloured band just behind his head.

That sounds like a newly-hatched grass snake. I've never seen one side-winding but then I've never seen one so small. Maybe they change their means of locomotion as they get older?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 30 August, 2010, 11:20:29 pm
That sounds like a newly-hatched grass snake. I've never seen one side-winding but then I've never seen one so small. Maybe they change their means of locomotion as they get older?

I expect he was feeling very exposed on the stone flags by the foot-bridge and was improvising in the eagerness to find shelter.  It was a lovely sighting and I'm sad not to have captured a shot of it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 31 August, 2010, 08:30:57 pm
Just now a barn owl screeching away on the telegraph pole just outside our garden.

We had a little owl in our plum tree yesterday morning, in broad daylight

It seemed quite happy

Little owls are often about during the day in a most un owl like fashion. Mind you our local barn owl was hunting during the day earlier in the year. Young to feed I should think.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rower40 on 01 September, 2010, 12:19:57 pm
I was out in my boat on Sunday, when I saw a small [frantically searches for collective name] of ducks clustering on the river under an overhanging bramble bush.  They took it in turns to rear up out of the water, and pluck a blackberry from the bush.  They must've liked them, as they kept going back for more.

Fox in my garden on Tuesday.  By the time I'd switched the camera on, he'd seen my bright yellow jacket and scarpered.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 01 September, 2010, 06:31:14 pm
[frantically searches for collective name] of ducks

A raft or paddling of ducks? (http://www.birdnature.com/groupnames.html)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JonBuoy on 01 September, 2010, 09:52:11 pm
On Saturday a kestrel flew over our house  :thumbsup:

A couple of weeks ago a kestrel flew into my house.  It actually flew into the living room window then dropped onto the window ledge and sat there looking in at me from about three feet away.  I tried to fire up the camera on my phone but it flew away before I could get a photo.  I wasn't too sure what kind of bird it was (other than a bird of prey) but a visit to the RSPB website convinced me that it was a kestrel.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 02 September, 2010, 08:25:22 pm
Tawny Owl on the telegraph pole - silouetted against the afterglow.

Also - a cloud of bats whizzing around the front garden. I've never found where they sleep - the loft I guess.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 02 September, 2010, 10:11:07 pm
Frog on the doorstep. Just a little one.
Tried kissing it- no joy.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 03 September, 2010, 09:50:25 am
Loads over the last few days: buzzards, red deer, oystercatchers, rock pipits, grey seals, kestrels, a red squirrel and a golden eagle.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 03 September, 2010, 01:20:38 pm
Loads over the last few days: buzzards, red deer, oystercatchers, rock pipits, grey seals, kestrels, a red squirrel and a golden eagle.

In the Ashby de la Zouch area?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: tokwitney on 03 September, 2010, 07:31:09 pm
i saw a dead Mink today in the middle of a country lane....
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris N on 03 September, 2010, 08:19:09 pm
In the Ashby de la Zouch area?
;D

Arran, Kintyre and the west coast of Scotland. More buzzards, herons and another red squirrel today as we headed east towards Comrie, where I've seen green woodpeckers and can hear owls, pheasants and lots of woodpigeon.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: spesh on 06 September, 2010, 05:27:07 pm
A frog, in the boot of my car.

How it got there is left as an exercise for the reader. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Kim on 08 September, 2010, 11:18:17 pm
An absolutely terrifyingly enormous hairy spider, which barakta allowed to escape, and is now keeping the now legendary low profile somewhere in the tangle of dusty cables behind her desk.  It's biding its time and is going to kill us and eat us when we go to bed.   :-[
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: woollypigs on 08 September, 2010, 11:39:07 pm
An absolutely terrifyingly enormous hairy spider, which barakta allowed to escape, and is now keeping the now legendary low profile somewhere in the tangle of dusty cables behind her desk.  It's biding its time and is going to kill us and eat us when we go to bed.   :-[
For some reason when I read this, this song popped into my head ...


      YouTube
            - The Cure - Lullaby [Music Video]
    (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oOHQs405XcU)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 12 September, 2010, 06:25:37 pm
A HUUUGE dragonfly patrolling outside our kitchen window, hunting wasps.

Biggest one I've ever seen.

And on the way home just now, 10 buzzards spiralling up on a thermal, all shouting their feathery heads off :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 15 September, 2010, 01:21:16 pm
S'funny, we saw a great big green dragonfly on Sunday clattering around, and then later in the afternoon several squadrons of Swifts swooshing and swifting around the Downs gobbling up flies and whatnot coming up off the ground from all the sheep poo, prior to saluting "Goodbye" to southern Britain for this year.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 15 September, 2010, 01:48:34 pm
A dead housemartin which Mildred our big chicken then grabbed and proceeded to devour. Chickens are the avian equivalent of goldfish in that they have tiny brains and will eat anything.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 15 September, 2010, 10:43:38 pm
Mmm, goldfish omelette!  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: BrianI on 16 September, 2010, 03:20:18 pm
Saw a red squirrel today while out for a cycle through some woods!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 16 September, 2010, 10:34:02 pm
Last week whilst on a site visit for work the CCTV camera inspecting the culvert recorded what was either a large Mink or a small Otter. current opinion is that it probably was a young Otter. The ecologists will be going out next week to try to corroborate the poor video with prints or droppings.

This will be the first Otter recorded on this river since the 60s so the conservation team are rather excited.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ray 6701 on 17 September, 2010, 05:45:21 pm
2 buzzards in the fields opposite my lane, I thought I'd heard them recently but today was the 1st time I've seen any that close to home.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 19 September, 2010, 10:57:37 am
A large skein of geese flying in the direction of Englandshire yesterday.  Autumn has arrived !

A post script...
   Arrival of wild geese heralds onset of autumn - The Scotsman
 (http://thescotsman.scotsman.com/scotland/Arrival-of-wild-geese-heralds.6539468.jp)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 20 September, 2010, 09:29:57 pm
A small group of 10 pinks over North Berwick this afternoon; swallows and house martins moving through.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: LindaG on 20 September, 2010, 09:34:11 pm
Riding back from Northallerton, I saw a small leaf blowing in the road and thought, "Those autumn leaves, they always look like little animals running in the road".

It was a little animal running in the road.

I stopped, and watched.  It was a tiny vole.  It zigzagged around the road.  There was a car coming.

Little Voley stopped under the instep of my left foot for a moment, and when the car had gone, ran into the verge.

I was reminded of the rabbit at the end of Peter Abelard, thrusting its head trustingly into his hand just before it died.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 22 September, 2010, 01:21:38 pm
Amazing! 22nd September. Swifts and swallows flapping and skimming around in the skies above Brighton, on avery warm day. Lovely.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 22 September, 2010, 01:42:15 pm
And now a buzzard has gorn across the sky. No wonder the Herring Gulls got all excited.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 September, 2010, 07:13:19 pm
Several hundred pink foot grazing in the fields next to my ride home this evening - the first time I've seen them this year.  In a few weeks time I'll be riding past them in the dark, just me, my Ixon IQ beam ( :thumbsup:) and the glorious sound of all of them flying off to their roosts.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Giropaul on 28 September, 2010, 10:14:46 pm
I've just found a Common Lizard in the garden (at least, that's wwhat I think it is)(I was looking for the local frog at the time) That's the first time I've ever seen one - global warming in Staffordshire?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 30 September, 2010, 07:29:05 pm
Just outside my back door:
(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y289/nicknacknick/Img_0847.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 30 September, 2010, 10:15:59 pm
Just outside my back door:
(http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y289/nicknacknick/Img_0847.jpg)

Lordy.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 01 October, 2010, 09:46:24 am
It's started!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Sergeant Pluck on 01 October, 2010, 11:30:19 pm
So what's eating what?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 02 October, 2010, 08:32:07 am
Isn't the big one a sexton beetle? They're grave diggers. The little ones are surely some kind of (making my skin crawl) spider mite.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: perpetual dan on 04 October, 2010, 06:22:16 pm
Saw a young seagull today. Not so strange, living by the sea. This one was doing the padding the ground for worms thing. This morning it was doing it on the road. This afternoon it was on a car roof. No idea what it did for lunch.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 07 October, 2010, 09:30:24 am
BY ALL THAT'S HOLY! I'VE JUST SEEN A SWALLOW SKIMMING ACROSS THE SKY IN BRIGHTON!!!
7TH OCTOBER.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: nicknack on 07 October, 2010, 09:41:52 am
My magnolia is in flower.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 07 October, 2010, 06:22:14 pm
A roe deer. Looked quite young. It's normal to see them in the forest, but this one was in a field a good mile from the woods and very near the road. I shall take this as a sign of approaching winter (brr, it's six degrees today!)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 10 October, 2010, 09:47:07 pm
BY ALL THAT'S HOLY! I'VE JUST SEEN A SWALLOW SKIMMING ACROSS THE SKY IN BRIGHTON!!!
7TH OCTOBER.

I don't think that's terribly unusual.

I didn't see any swallows today so they may well have taken advantage of the north wind and buggered off.

The latest in the year I have ever seen a swallow / house martin / swift was a pair of house martins on 20th November 1976 on Westcliff sea front. That was an absolutely freak incident though and I've never seen them later than about the third week in October otherwise.

According to South East Essex RSPB Local Group - Latest Bird Reports (http://www.southendrspb.co.uk/sightings.htm), several swallows were seen yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 11 October, 2010, 10:41:09 am
No, perhaps not, but given the crap weather around September and distinct lack of sightings, I thought the buggers had all buggered off. It was probably just our southern johnnies. The one I saw, and the House Martin yesterday, were most likely our northern johnnies making their way down for the trip abroad.

Mind you, the way the wind was going yesterday I wouldn't be at all surprised if they weren't blown along to Cornwall.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 11 October, 2010, 10:52:40 am
Probably. Our housemartins only left a few weeks ago them another small batch turned up a week later presumably on their way south from further north.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 11 October, 2010, 01:46:57 pm
My magnolia is in flower.

So is my ceanothus.  Wha'gwaan'?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 11 October, 2010, 01:50:04 pm
Spotted my first ever nuthatch visiting out bird feeder  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 October, 2010, 04:36:25 pm
Spotted my first ever nuthatch visiting out bird feeder  :)

They are quite violent, aren't they?

Have you ever seen a greater spotted woodpecker on a bird feeder? They really give it some welly. :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 11 October, 2010, 04:48:40 pm
Spotted my first ever nuthatch visiting out bird feeder  :)

They are quite violent, aren't they?

Have you ever seen a greater spotted woodpecker on a bird feeder? They really give it some welly. :D

we've got one in the garden, vicious looking bugger it is too. 

I saw what I think was a red kite on my run yesterday, bloody huge bird of prey shaped bird, with reddish wings but I didnt see any white feathers on the underside of the wings.  It came out of the tree as I ran under it, and flapped slowly about 50 yards ahead of me till it drifted across to the other corner of the field. I'd heard there were a couple of pairs living round here but hadnt seen anything that close before. 

It was  here (http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=chiswick+hall+chrishall&sll=51.491197,-0.265645&sspn=0.006172,0.016544&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Chiswick+Hall,+Chrishall,+Royston,+Hertfordshire+SG8+8RA,+United+Kingdom&ll=52.007208,0.10289&spn=0.001526,0.004136&t=h&z=18), give or take.   
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 11 October, 2010, 06:27:39 pm
On yesterdays ride a very white looking wasp landed on my bars briefly, not sure if it was infected or going mouldy but there was just a hint of yellow and black on the underneath.

I also saw a very dark plumaged pheasant in a hedgerow.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 12 October, 2010, 04:15:19 pm
Spotted my first ever nuthatch visiting out bird feeder  :)

They are quite violent, aren't they?

Have you ever seen a greater spotted woodpecker on a bird feeder? They really give it some welly. :D

Had a greater spotted woodpecker check out the birdfeeder but didn't hang around.

Today on the way to Gibside:  1 red kite, 1 dead cat, 1 dead cow.

At Gibside:  4 jays, 1 red kite, 1 wren.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 14 October, 2010, 12:13:28 am
A mouse that Mojo brought in. It had a large (for a mouse) stomach wound and died in my hands while I was considering how best to put it out of its misery.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 15 October, 2010, 11:18:50 pm
Lots and lots of frogs. Large and small, all over the roads. Some so well camouflaged - they have the colouration and markings of leaves - that I nearly ran them over.

Also some kind of small, pale-coloured hawk in a field. Not a kestrel. Looked a bit like a merlin, but I think those are only found further north. Maybe it was a sparrowhawk, but I'm not sure.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 16 October, 2010, 05:34:48 pm
Just back from two weeks on Speyside.   Our last swallows of the year, and our first redwings, plus crested tits, black grouse, and the usual abundance of red squirrels.  And an added bonus, on a day trip to Findhorn, a sighting of the Moray Firth dolphins.
Judging from the parked landrover the Autumnwatch team appeared to be staying in a cottage just up the road from us.  Sad to say that we didn't see any wild cats...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 17 October, 2010, 12:30:00 am
what we think was a sparrow hawk was plucking a pigeon at the bottom of the garden.




our cat was very pleased to have lunch delivered.  ::-)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 17 October, 2010, 10:00:58 am
what we think was a sparrow hawk was plucking a pigeon at the bottom of the garden


Very likely a sparrowhawk, as you say.

We had a local one at the last house, a big female who used to regularly pluck and butcher wood pigeons in the garden, and carry them off in pieces.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 17 October, 2010, 07:19:03 pm
what we think was a sparrow hawk was plucking a pigeon at the bottom of the garden


Very likely a sparrowhawk, as you say.

We had a local one at the last house, a big female who used to regularly pluck and butcher wood pigeons in the garden, and carry them off in pieces.

I've only once seen a sparrow hawk catch a large bird, a collared dove. The brief view I had gave me the impression that the sparrow hawk, with its talons embedded in the dove's back, took advantage of the dove's final few wing beats to steer it to where the sparrow hawk wanted to go before killing it. I suppose that a large bird like a dove would be too heavy for the hawk to carry away.

Quite chilling.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 October, 2010, 08:59:36 pm
Judging from the parked landrover the Autumnwatch team appeared to be staying in a cottage just up the road from us.  Sad to say that we didn't see any wild cats...
I'm not convinced they did either. Some stripey kittens, sure, but way too kitten shaped to be able to tell if they were actually wildcats for me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 17 October, 2010, 09:02:07 pm
We think we saw a Black Grouse today too, and a bit late some female red deer ran across the road in front of me. And the ubiquitous buzzards, but swooping across the road only a few feet in front of my face, twice today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 17 October, 2010, 09:05:10 pm
We think we saw a Black Grouse today too, and a bit late some female red deer ran across the road in front of me. And the ubiquitous buzzards, but swooping across the road only a few feet in front of my face, twice today.

That's because the buzzards were saying "WTF is a penguin doing in Scotland?"
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: vorsprung on 17 October, 2010, 09:15:33 pm
went for a walk up the culm
Saw a Kingfisher.  I wouldn't have spotted it but Mrs V was was looking at a branch through binoculars and it landed on it!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 October, 2010, 10:09:02 pm
We think we saw a Black Grouse today too, and a bit late some female red deer ran across the road in front of me. And the ubiquitous buzzards, but swooping across the road only a few feet in front of my face, twice today.

...and a a mouse/shrew type thing jumping across a ditch.
...and kestrel.
...and some yellow sheep.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 17 October, 2010, 11:29:21 pm
Continuing the sparrow hawk theme, one visited our garden the day before yesterday and caught something there - a pigeon of some sort judging by the feathers. I have seen sparrow hawks here occasionally, but unfortunately didn't see this one in action.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 18 October, 2010, 09:46:56 pm
Judging from the parked landrover the Autumnwatch team appeared to be staying in a cottage just up the road from us.  Sad to say that we didn't see any wild cats...
I'm not convinced they did either. Some stripey kittens, sure, but way too kitten shaped to be able to tell if they were actually wildcats for me.

Well they almost certainly caught wild cats on video and the camera traps, but the cute kittens may or may not have been completely wild.  It seems more likely that the black kitten was a Scottish cat / domestic cat hybrid.

I wonder if Scottish wild cats are like domestic cats, and the kittens can have multiple fathers?  If so, then a pair of kittens could have a Scottish wild cat mum, and one could be pure Scottish wild cat with a wild cat dad, whilst the other kitten had a domestic cat dad.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 18 October, 2010, 10:45:04 pm
I wonder if Scottish wild cats are like domestic cats, and the kittens can have multiple fathers?

That'll be the Torry cats.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 19 October, 2010, 09:37:31 am

I wonder if Scottish wild cats are like domestic cats, and the kittens can have multiple fathers?
Yes. Each kitten is from a separate egg, separately fertilised.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 19 October, 2010, 09:58:33 am
The same as humans then in the case of non identical twins or triplets etc.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 20 October, 2010, 02:48:58 pm
If so, then a pair of kittens could have a Scottish wild cat mum, and one could be pure Scottish wild cat with a wild cat dad, whilst the other kitten had a domestic cat dad.

Brave domestic cat :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 26 October, 2010, 01:23:23 pm
A sea eagle!!!

I was just sat in the 'sun' room, looking out across Loch Broom. There it was!

 :thumbsup:


(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/sea_eagle.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 26 October, 2010, 02:02:20 pm
Jaded, those pictures are (definitely*) of a golden eagle.  Which (out of a sun room, anyway) is probably even cooler  :)

Seen last week (on Mull): sea eagle**; golden eagle**; otter; peregrine; hen harrier; red-throated diver; great northern diver; barnacle goose; lots of other stuff ...


* - trust me; I know
** - including 2 of each at the same time ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 26 October, 2010, 03:21:56 pm
Dolphins leaping in the harbour mouth this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 26 October, 2010, 06:44:09 pm
Yesterday, three red deer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 27 October, 2010, 07:45:59 pm
Not by me, alas, but seen by the security guards at our local Embra shopping centre. 
   Otter is caught on camera at Capital shopping centre  - Edinburgh Evening News
 (http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/topstories/Otter-is-caught-on-camera.6600966.jp)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: corshamjim on 27 October, 2010, 08:20:45 pm
A couple of bats.  I half wonder if they're attracted by the sound of my dynamo?  ::-)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 27 October, 2010, 08:44:58 pm
A dormouse, it was in a dormouse box so I shouldn't be too surprised.

Spotting otters in Scotland is just cheating.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 October, 2010, 07:02:13 pm
Spotting otters in Scotland is just cheating.

Point taken, the last time I went to Sainsbury's you couldn't move for the pesky little critters  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 28 October, 2010, 08:53:03 pm
A pheasant, and a very squashed frog.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: noisycrank on 28 October, 2010, 08:55:49 pm
A dormouse, it was in a dormouse box so I shouldn't be too surprised.

Spotting otters in Scotland is just cheating.

Spotting Dormice in Scotland is a real challenge
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 October, 2010, 09:33:58 pm
Not by me, alas, but seen by the security guards at our local Embra shopping centre. 
   Otter is caught on camera at Capital shopping centre  - Edinburgh Evening News
 (http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/topstories/Otter-is-caught-on-camera.6600966.jp)

 8) I'd better keep this from FirstBorn, or he'll be wanting to go down there looking for spraints ...
Title: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 October, 2010, 10:58:27 am
A trio of red kites on the M4 near Hungerford
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 29 October, 2010, 11:08:07 am
Which lane were they in? ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 30 October, 2010, 04:12:50 pm
At Musselburgh, a snow bunting.  And a sparrowhawk.  I do hope that the former doesn't end up as dinner for the latter.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 01 November, 2010, 07:48:27 pm
 A few red grouse, snipe and raven scattered around the higher bits of the Black Mountains on a glorious day, I am very lucky indeed to be (possibly temporarily) paid for looking at this stuff
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 02 November, 2010, 10:34:44 am
A cow crossed with a panda. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner/5138708229/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 02 November, 2010, 10:45:37 am
Jaded, those pictures are (definitely*) of a golden eagle.  Which (out of a sun room, anyway) is probably even cooler  :)

Seen last week (on Mull): sea eagle**; golden eagle**; otter; peregrine; hen harrier; red-throated diver; great northern diver; barnacle goose; lots of other stuff ...


* - trust me; I know
** - including 2 of each at the same time ...

Ooh, thank you! I shall report back to the bird-watching neighbours.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 03 November, 2010, 01:09:08 pm
Cygnets! Little ones, very new, on the Kennet.

I don't give them much chance of seeing Spring, let alone getting their black adult plumage.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 03 November, 2010, 11:18:15 pm
Seen a couple of weeks ago and I wasn't aware of apples affecting acorns, but that doesn't mean much.

(http://i52.tinypic.com/2u6puu0.jpg)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 04 November, 2010, 02:16:06 am
A trio of red kites on the M4 near Hungerford

There are always red kites near the M4. Don't think I have ever not seen some except when its been raining or snowing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 04 November, 2010, 08:49:11 am
Seen a couple of weeks ago and I wasn't aware of apples affecting acorns, but that doesn't mean much.

(http://i52.tinypic.com/2u6puu0.jpg)



Give it a few days and it'll erupt from its stomach
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 10 November, 2010, 06:43:27 pm
Saw this critter out and about this morning. I was surprised to see it so late in the year, but it was very lethargic, and didn't move from this flower for several minutes, making no attempt to fly away from the camera lens about 1 cm away.

(http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1312/5164840894_60eef557d3.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner/5164840894/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 11 November, 2010, 12:02:12 am
Wasps around today, being dozy

We had an invasion of butterflies last night - one's been asleep over the fireplace since we moved in, but it woke up and drove the cats ballistic, so I put it out.  Repeat 4 times as its mates hiding up the chimney also awoke :)

All Tortoiseshells (as is one of the cats)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 13 November, 2010, 08:05:11 pm
Jaded, those pictures are (definitely*) of a golden eagle.  Which (out of a sun room, anyway) is probably even cooler  :)

Seen last week (on Mull): sea eagle**; golden eagle**; otter; peregrine; hen harrier; red-throated diver; great northern diver; barnacle goose; lots of other stuff ...


* - trust me; I know
** - including 2 of each at the same time ...

Definitely a goldie. Tail size is one big pointer.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 13 November, 2010, 10:46:40 pm
Sparrowhawk perched in a tree beside the A4074 looking as if it was waiting for something to kill.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 14 November, 2010, 08:02:43 am
Sparrowhawk perched in a tree beside the A4074 looking as if it was waiting for something to kill.

Waiting to chased off by blackbirds is the more likely option.

Very little about the Rhondda yesterday a few Raven on the hilltops and a couple of large playful groups of long-tailed tits the only diversions.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 15 November, 2010, 01:37:24 pm
30 odd waxwings, Fettes area.

<quote from colleague>
Comely Bank boneyard is seething with evil sparrowhawks.  The poor wee waxies are all doomed, doomed..............
</quote>
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 15 November, 2010, 06:50:52 pm
^ and me, about 2 dozen of them on the canal at Harrison Park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 17 November, 2010, 08:58:11 pm
Seen on Monday - is this possible?

We were out walking at High Woods Country Park in Colchester through a woody bit with both dogs off the lead. Young cockapoo Poppy was running ahead and we saw an animal run out of the woods on our right, cross the path and dive into undergrowth on our left. Poppy stopped and, amazingly, returned to me when I called her.

This is because it looked rather like a small wild boar. Or possibly (the back end at least) like a deer. But the front really did look like a boar - James said the same. We have form for wild boar spotting - were in the local newspaper in Tonbridge several years ago when our Weimaraner cornered a Wild Boar.

So, is it possible it was a wild boar, or was it a deer that looked like a boar?

And we're still amazed Poppy came back when called!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tail End Charlie on 17 November, 2010, 09:54:05 pm
4 buzzards circling around Tatton Park. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 17 November, 2010, 10:34:46 pm
Canada geese and Moorhens on the Grand Union Canal.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 17 November, 2010, 10:36:53 pm
A roe deer stag with a rather magnificent set of antlers tonight walking along the side of the road just outside Malton.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 17 November, 2010, 10:44:11 pm
Seen on Monday - is this possible?

We were out walking at High Woods Country Park in Colchester through a woody bit with both dogs off the lead. Young cockapoo Poppy was running ahead and we saw an animal run out of the woods on our right, cross the path and dive into undergrowth on our left. Poppy stopped and, amazingly, returned to me when I called her.

This is because it looked rather like a small wild boar. Or possibly (the back end at least) like a deer. But the front really did look like a boar - James said the same. We have form for wild boar spotting - were in the local newspaper in Tonbridge several years ago when our Weimaraner cornered a Wild Boar.

So, is it possible it was a wild boar, or was it a deer that looked like a boar?

And we're still amazed Poppy came back when called!

Wild Boar in Britain (http://www.britishwildboar.org.uk/index.htm?map2.html)

I've never seen one but it seems possible.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 18 November, 2010, 12:48:25 pm
Seen on Monday - is this possible?

We were out walking at High Woods Country Park in Colchester through a woody bit with both dogs off the lead. Young cockapoo Poppy was running ahead and we saw an animal run out of the woods on our right, cross the path and dive into undergrowth on our left. Poppy stopped and, amazingly, returned to me when I called her.

This is because it looked rather like a small wild boar. Or possibly (the back end at least) like a deer. But the front really did look like a boar - James said the same. We have form for wild boar spotting - were in the local newspaper in Tonbridge several years ago when our Weimaraner cornered a Wild Boar.

So, is it possible it was a wild boar, or was it a deer that looked like a boar?

And we're still amazed Poppy came back when called!
It'll be a muntjac (http://www.wildaboutbritain.co.uk/muntjac-deer) The males have tusks.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 18 November, 2010, 02:28:04 pm

Wild Boar in Britain (http://www.britishwildboar.org.uk/index.htm?map2.html)

I've never seen one but it seems possible.

They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 19 November, 2010, 07:30:28 pm
At Musselburgh, a snow bunting.  And a sparrowhawk.  I do hope that the former doesn't end up as dinner for the latter.

How lovely, I've never seen a snow bunting but would love to!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 19 November, 2010, 11:24:44 pm
They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !
They are trying to halve the FoD boar population, but not succeeding (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-gloucestershire-11034307)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 20 November, 2010, 08:02:25 pm
A quick spin in West Lothian this morning - 2 goosander, 1 dabchick + chick (albeit quite well grown), 1 tree sparrow, loads of fieldfares and hundreds of pink footed geese.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 20 November, 2010, 08:38:56 pm
They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !
They are trying to halve the FoD boar population, but not succeeding (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-gloucestershire-11034307)

They are hard to control. Germany is having a real problem with wild boar and a hell of a lot more people shoot them than do here. They can be very destructive.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 20 November, 2010, 09:13:12 pm
They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !
They are trying to halve the FoD boar population, but not succeeding (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-gloucestershire-11034307)

They are hard to control. Germany is having a real problem with wild boar and a hell of a lot more people shoot them than do here. They can be very destructive.

At work we are part of a consortium funding a bounty for any shot.
They spread disease. We spend millions on biosecurity and some fool lets a couple of 'pet' boars loose to spread pneumonia, salmonella, foot and mouth, whatever. They're no longer welcome in East Anglia, we have too many pig farms for it to be safe.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 23 November, 2010, 08:40:47 pm
Seen from breakfast table this morning with the two smaller gears: magpie teasing a young fox: first the magpie sat on a wall and the fox vainly jumped, then the magpie moved to the runner bean post and the fox vainly jumped, then to the greenhouse and the fox vainly jumped, then a repeat of all three before the magpie grew bored and flew off, leaving the fox to saunter onto the bottom lawn where, out of sight of the house it undoubtedly dug holes in persuit of slugs and left a disgusting cr*p. The larger of the smaller gears was chuffed to have seen a fox's face for the first time - he often glimpses a body or a tail but could not remember having seen a face. So cute but argh! the cra*p! and argh! the holes!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 November, 2010, 10:48:38 am
A lesser spotted woodpecker, I think

Rubbish photo, grabbed rapidly from inside the house using my phone.  It's the bird on the left; too small I think to be a Greater Spotted (the other bird is a Finch of some sort, for scale) though it had the correct black/white/red uniform.  Plus it's eating from a ground feeder (on a wall pillar) and I've only ever seen the Greaters on the peanut feeders.

(http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/bosphorus/woodpecker.jpg)

They're quite rare here.  I've heard a woodpecker in our Yew tree.  Hopefully it was this chap :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 November, 2010, 10:50:28 am
I think lesser spotteds are pretty rare all over the country. I've never seen one but I've heard that they are present in some local woodland.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 29 November, 2010, 11:11:47 am
I was up on one of the downs South of Croydon, and was talking to someone as we stood in clump of trees.

Above our head, and very close to us, a robin flitted around.  Beautifully fitting to the frosty scene across the down.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 29 November, 2010, 11:17:40 am
There's a snowdrop attempting to flower in Priory Park.

I first noticed them flowering there in early December the year my mum died (2004) and they appear every year, but I've deliberately looked for them this year.

It must be a very early variety because elsewhere I've never seen snowdrops in flower until January.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 29 November, 2010, 07:41:17 pm
A lesser spotted woodpecker, I think

They're quite rare here.  I've heard a woodpecker in our Yew tree.  Hopefully it was this chap :)

If that's a finch on the right that's a gtr spot woodpecker, sorry to bring you the bad news, although they've only just arrived at our feeders and we regard it as good news, the local nuthatches are yet to be tempted by our food though, a matter of time hopefully ???. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 29 November, 2010, 09:18:01 pm
mmm

Mrs MV said the same.  Very small fella though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 30 November, 2010, 05:05:41 pm
mmm

Mrs MV said the same.  Very small fella though.

They're surprisingly small.  Loud, though ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 30 November, 2010, 05:08:32 pm
I always regard dunnocks as having a very quiet, understated song.

It's wrens who are the noisy buggers.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 30 November, 2010, 10:12:52 pm
Whilst scraping the ice off the car windows at about 8.30am on our suburban Welsh street, a fox trotted unconcernedly past me barely giving a glance, moseyed along the pavement, inspected a few front gardens and ambled off into the distance. I really had to double check that it wasn't a dog or a cat.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 01 December, 2010, 11:20:43 am
Whilst scraping the ice off the car windows at about 8.30am on our suburban Welsh street, a fox trotted unconcernedly past me barely giving a glance, moseyed along the pavement, inspected a few front gardens and ambled off into the distance. I really had to double check that it wasn't a dog or a cat.

A lot of urban foxes are quite unconcerned about humans.  Earlier this year whilst I was cycling slowlyish up a bit of hill on my way to Greenwich to meet up some people for a ride, one actually started walking towards me.  I assume it had been fed by some humans, so wasn't so much unconcerned as positively friendly!

I've had plenty of other wander out of gardens, look at me, and then just wander at the same speed into the next door garden, presumably just doing a regular check of gardens and bins for anything edible that had been left out.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 02 December, 2010, 09:29:46 pm
We've all seen them , but you can't resist taking a photo when one sits in front of you like this ...................

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/256218/d8aed379b/RobinC.jpg)

Snake
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 05 December, 2010, 08:09:01 pm
Was watching a robin in the garden this afternoon: squirrels have repeatedly knocked the wire-mesh tube bird seed feeder from the tree it usually hangs, so I'd rehung it from the top clothes line. Various finch-types were zooming back and forth to it. A robin was sitting on a bush enviously watching them feed (I'd also thrown some seed on the lawn beneath the feeder's new position but the birds hadn't yet found it). The robin eventually tried - repeatedly - to land on the feeder but kept changing its mind on the final approach: much mid-air undignified flutters with feathers sticking up in stange directions. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: chris on 05 December, 2010, 08:42:58 pm
A pair of pheasants have taken up residence behind our shed -

(http://i124.photobucket.com/albums/p23/chris415700/IMG_0925.jpg)

I wonder what we'll be having for Chrismas dinner ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Salvatore on 06 December, 2010, 10:55:03 am
By pure coincidence ...

This is one of at least two pheasants who are regular visitors to my mother's garden. I didn't realise there were two until they both appeared together. Snapped through a gap in the curtain. He appears to have spotted me but it didn't phase him - he just carried on pecking at the seeds.

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5044/5237767804_5be5f2a786.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnspooner/5237767804/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 06 December, 2010, 01:37:03 pm

Snake


No it isn't.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 06 December, 2010, 07:57:07 pm

Snake


No it isn't.

Nothing gets past you!  ;) (Nuncio Attenborough?)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: unipaul on 06 December, 2010, 08:02:24 pm
Spotted this evening on my ride home - a deer. Very close. Slamming on brakes close. Fortunately thanks to the Cyo wunderlite it wasn't too close.... It skittered down the icy road for 20m or so before disappearing into the undergrowth again.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 07 December, 2010, 10:47:21 am
Saw these recently in Richmond Park , acting like a pair. Any ideas what they are ? Pochard / Tufted hybrids ?


(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/256809/2f197cb95/I_3881c2.jpg)


Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 09 December, 2010, 12:15:11 am
Quite a large flock of long tailed tits this morning. These tiny birds are often amongst the first to succumb in a pronged cold spell: they eat mostly insects which are pretty scarce now and of course there were very few around in the cold snap last winter.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 10 December, 2010, 01:12:24 am
Was watching a robin in the garden this afternoon: squirrels have repeatedly knocked the wire-mesh tube bird seed feeder from the tree it usually hangs, so I'd rehung it from the top clothes line. Various finch-types were zooming back and forth to it. A robin was sitting on a bush enviously watching them feed (I'd also thrown some seed on the lawn beneath the feeder's new position but the birds hadn't yet found it). The robin eventually tried - repeatedly - to land on the feeder but kept changing its mind on the final approach: much mid-air undignified flutters with feathers sticking up in stange directions. 

By this morning the robin (I assume its the same one) had learnt how to land on the bird feeder and was tucking in.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 10 December, 2010, 01:51:11 am
Monday, on a truly dreadful daytrip to Southampton by train, in some flooded and frozen fields near Chichester, a bittern. Walking across snow from one set of reeds to another. A real "OH!!!" moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 December, 2010, 07:30:29 pm
I'd just left Elsenham this morning when I heard the "ki-ki-ki" of what I thought was a sparrowhawk. I also saw what I thought was a wood pigeon on a nearby wire.

The next thing I knew there were two birds rolling around in the field about 100 yards away with an occasional "ki-ki-ki" sound. I watched for quite some time and was impressed for how long the supine bird kept struggling. Indeed, every so often it seemed as though the two birds were wrestling and they'd change places.

This went on for about 5 minutes and eventually both birds got up and flew away. I think they were both kestrels and that they'd been having a good old scrap, but I really could have done with a pair of binoculars.

Some years ago I observed a male kestrel continually dive-bombing what I assumed at the time to be a female, but with hindsight may well have been a juvenile bird. The RSPB: Kestrel: The kestrel's year (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/k/kestrel/kestrel_year.aspx) refers to kestrel territories and I assume that this is what I've been fortunate enough to witness.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 11 December, 2010, 08:08:12 pm
Oh, and not long before I stopped at the Viper I was obliged to find a convenient hedge. I had noticed some beehives in the corner of the field.

As I was weeing a honey bee came and settled on my arm, possibly attracted by the yellowy-green fluorescence of my night Vision jacket.

"Hello!" I said to her, "What are you doing out today?"

At which point she flew off back to her hive.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 12 December, 2010, 02:42:53 pm
Just round the side of Sainsbury's at Colliers Wood there was a beautiful Jay having a bath in the river Wandle :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 12 December, 2010, 02:44:32 pm
Lovely sight.

We also saw a pretty pied wagtail a bit further on.  My favourite bird.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 12 December, 2010, 04:47:54 pm
Had a fleeting view of a brambling today.  I gather that they are not uncommon but I'd never knowingly seen one before.  Always nice to see something new.
Title: Saw this fella guarding Stanborough Lakes this morning.
Post by: JohnP on 12 December, 2010, 04:55:13 pm
(http://media.ispyabird.co.uk/photos/photo/image/3741/main/Stanborough_12_12_2010_0027.jpg)



Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 12 December, 2010, 07:03:08 pm
A blackcap? In Aberdeen? In winter?

I can't find anything else in our bird book that it might have been
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 12 December, 2010, 07:25:16 pm
A blackcap? In Aberdeen? In winter?

I can't find anything else in our bird book that it might have been
There are reports of blackcaps overwintering in the UK.  We had a couple in the garden the winter before last.  They're taking advantage of our warmer winters  ??? and earlier springs to start breeding earlier and getting a head start on the birds which are still migrating.  But Aberdeen does seem rather far north and cold...

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 12 December, 2010, 07:51:56 pm
Waxwings on the Tandem Club ride, down at Normans' Bay, wot is near Pevensey.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 12 December, 2010, 10:48:46 pm
Whilst scraping the ice off the car windows at about 8.30am on our suburban Welsh street, a fox trotted unconcernedly past me barely giving a glance, moseyed along the pavement, inspected a few front gardens and ambled off into the distance. I really had to double check that it wasn't a dog or a cat.

A lot of urban foxes are quite unconcerned about humans.  Earlier this year whilst I was cycling slowlyish up a bit of hill on my way to Greenwich to meet up some people for a ride, one actually started walking towards me.  I assume it had been fed by some humans, so wasn't so much unconcerned as positively friendly!

I've had plenty of other wander out of gardens, look at me, and then just wander at the same speed into the next door garden, presumably just doing a regular check of gardens and bins for anything edible that had been left out.

This afternoon, whilst shovelling building spoil in the garden with my two smaller gears (11 and 14), the younger one said 'There's a fox!' - it was eight feet from us! It ambled around the garden and around us (we stood still) for a good minute and a half before ambling off. Seen quite a lot of foxes over the years but never had the opportunity to view one so close or for so long.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: LindaG on 12 December, 2010, 10:51:37 pm
On the way out of work tonight, feeling a bit upset, I saw a bunny rabbit hopping about in the hospital car park.  We get a fair  few of them.  This one looked at me, then made its way to my car to wait for me.

I suggested he make way for my car, since he was liable to squashing, and he obliged.

A nice little  moment.  Cheered me up.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: BrianI on 15 December, 2010, 04:43:48 pm
Saw a sea eagle at Loch Leven nature reserve yesterday!   :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 18 December, 2010, 09:03:17 pm
Thursday, actually, at midday. A fox. A rare sight here on Europe's Eastern Wall, they normally keep out of people's way in the forest, unlike their bolder British cousins.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 19 December, 2010, 12:13:13 pm
What I think was a sparrowhawk being mobbed by pigeons.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 19 December, 2010, 02:12:37 pm
Swans. Lots and lots and lots of Swans.

Here: Welney - Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT) (http://www.wwt.org.uk/welney)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: LindaG on 22 December, 2010, 12:14:04 pm
Lots of redwings in the hedge by the footpath.  A whole tree full of sparrows chattering away at the falling snow.

Lots of dogs going nuts in the snow.  Dogs are fun  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 26 December, 2010, 04:53:13 pm
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/ducks.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 26 December, 2010, 04:59:28 pm
(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/cold_heron.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 26 December, 2010, 05:04:54 pm
Yesterday:  a brace of Woodcock, near Cock Wood, Downham, Essex.

Today: turnstone, a greater spotted woodpecker and a pair of great crested grebes. The last were swimming in the estuary near the coastguard station. I can't recall seeing grebes swimming in salt water before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 27 December, 2010, 11:15:42 am

Today, 5 hares  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 27 December, 2010, 11:33:19 am
head hare?
nose hare?
ear hare?
pubic hare?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 27 December, 2010, 12:02:10 pm
head hare?
nose hare?
ear hare?
pubic hare?

Or - my favourite from Chris Packham last series - Ryan Hare ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bluebottle on 27 December, 2010, 02:08:49 pm
A redwing in Chatham. Yay :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 27 December, 2010, 09:11:14 pm
An addendum to post 1600 above: a brace of foxes at Gunners Park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 28 December, 2010, 09:16:38 am

Last night, hedgehog nicking the chicken's food :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 28 December, 2010, 11:26:22 am
You may be able to help us with this one.

We saw two bird in the hedge next to our garden.  Didn't get a great look at them, but it was about sparrow sized, with a pretty even, brown, thrush-like back, and a black face, not cap.  You could definitely only see it when it turned its head.

As they flew off, they had a low, swooping flight, like a wagtail.

Anyone any ideas?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 December, 2010, 01:13:23 pm
What length/colour of tail ?  Did it show any strong patterns as it flew off, eg wing bars/rump/tail feathers ?  Based on the description so far how about a reed bunting ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 28 December, 2010, 11:27:57 pm
No wing bars - as I say, just a fairly even brown colour.  Didn't get a good view of the tail.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 30 December, 2010, 11:59:04 am
Two Long Tailed Tits in the garden today ! 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 30 December, 2010, 08:00:08 pm
 woodpecker, near Prickwillow. I recognised it from it's flight thanks to tips from Wow on the way back from the yacf camping. It very kindly rested on a telegraph pole looking very woodpeckerish to allow me to confirm it's id.

I have forgotten which kind of woodpecker, but I'm sure Wow will remind me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Auntie Helen on 30 December, 2010, 10:44:53 pm
Just let the dogs out for a final wee. Roosting in the tree over our pond about three metres from the back door was a smallish raptor-looking bird. In my torchlight it looked maybe kestrelly. Is this likely? It didn't budge despite two doggies running around underneath and me shining my torch at it from several angles so James could get a look.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: geoff on 31 December, 2010, 05:35:02 pm
Just back from Otmoor to look for starlings. Saw about 50, rather than the 50,000 we'd hoped for,  but the ducks, geese, teal and widgeon  made up for it. Also a long discussion with RSPB warden about the collective noun: it is widgeon, not widgeons and they squeak: only mallard quack in flight. Great afternoon out. Happy New Year beasties!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 03 January, 2011, 05:20:44 pm
Drove over to Bo'ness today, didn't see very much but did see a greenshank, the first one I've seen for several decades.  I don't think that there's many of them about in this part of the world. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mr_brooks on 04 January, 2011, 10:29:03 am
Very bold hare in the snowy woods.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 04 January, 2011, 03:33:35 pm
Not today, but a few days ago, when I was at my parents over the New Year.  This is their "pet" seagull, whose been coming to the back garden ever since he was a juvenile.

My Mum throws food onto the garage roof for him (her?) since he can't easily land in the garden, and certainly can't get into the bird house that he's perched on!

(http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/Seagull_Christmas2010_thumb480.jpg) (http://jakal.sp.ph.ic.ac.uk/~timo/Seagull_Christmas2010.jpg)

Interestingly, the Common Gull is so named because it's noted for foraging on Common Land during the winter, rather than due to it's abundance.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 04 January, 2011, 05:13:44 pm
Though that's a herring gull.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 January, 2011, 04:42:23 pm
Heard but not seen: greater spotted woodpecker drumming this morning in Priory Park. Some say that this is a sign of spring, although I have heard them hammering away in October.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 05 January, 2011, 05:13:54 pm
Heard but not seen: greater spotted woodpecker drumming this morning in Priory Park. Some say that this is a sign of spring, although I have heard them hammering away in October.
I heard a woodpecker on Sunday in Priory Park. How do you know that it's a greater spotted on sound only?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 05 January, 2011, 05:54:40 pm
Heard but not seen: greater spotted woodpecker drumming this morning in Priory Park. Some say that this is a sign of spring, although I have heard them hammering away in October.
I heard a woodpecker on Sunday in Priory Park. How do you know that it's a greater spotted on sound only?

The green woodpecker is also known as a yaffle - which is its high-pitched yelping cry. They don't drum.

The RSPB: Green woodpecker (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/g/greenwoodpecker/index.aspx)

Greater spotteds drum as a method of communication. They also have a high-pitched staccato alarm call which sounds a bit like an amplified manic blackbird on performance-enhancing drugs.

The RSPB: Great spotted woodpecker (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/g/greatspottedwoodpecker/index.aspx)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 05 January, 2011, 06:05:37 pm
The green woodpecker is also known as a yaffle - which is its high-pitched yelping cry. They don't drum.
:thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 07 January, 2011, 10:46:43 am
A rather smart Bullfinch when I was having a cup of coffee in the lane.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 07 January, 2011, 02:31:15 pm
A nurban fox in Reading last night. It waited for a gap in the traffic, then trotted across Kings Road & entered the grounds of Thames Valley University (or Reading College, as it used to be called).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 07 January, 2011, 02:39:12 pm
It obviously was a member of the Tufty Club  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Manotea on 07 January, 2011, 05:57:34 pm
Had 'our' Heron sitting on the roof today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 07 January, 2011, 05:59:24 pm
6 cormorants on the Monnow at Monmouth today.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 09 January, 2011, 05:37:49 pm
Though that's a herring gull.

Is it? Oh well, my Gull recognition is only marginally better than my random bird recognition.  I'm doing pretty well to recognise it as a gull at all. ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 09 January, 2011, 06:53:03 pm
Four hares. Two in the distance and two others which bolted from cover just a metre or so away. If they had stayed put I very much doubt we would have spotted them.

Also lots of muddy mole hills!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 09 January, 2011, 11:04:54 pm

The green woodpecker is also known as a yaffle - which is its high-pitched yelping cry. They don't drum.


See also Bagpuss and Professor Yaffle, who is, of course, a woodpecker.

(Good stuff about the drumming there Wow. Filed away for future reference)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rdaviesb on 10 January, 2011, 09:11:58 am
A couple of days ago, a Snipe (which one of the cats carefully carried in through the back door and was thankfully rescued and flew away some minutes later).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 11 January, 2011, 04:06:14 pm
While out earlier on another abortive Waxwing hunt I stopped by one of by favourite haunts , the ponds of Bushy Park. , and saw this (forefront) bird.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/272415/be31d3e76/I4141c.jpg)

At first sight it looked  like a male Tufted , shown behind for comparison. The bird is bigger than the Tufted and has only a small tuft on the back of its head. The top part of its head is a lovely chestnut colour and the lower part of the head looks greenish (as does the rump) in a more favourable light.

Unfortunately most of the time the light and certain other conditions were far from favourable , but as I stood there in the biting wind hoping for a better picture a male Shoveller came down on the water nearby. As I cycled away a Green Woodpecker joined me for a brief period.

All in all a pleasant experience.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 12 January, 2011, 06:05:34 pm
^ Sorry, no idea !

Today I was exploring further the frankly grim industrial estate in which my work is now located.  Came across a nice little group of about 20 redpolls.  So it's not all bad.   
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 13 January, 2011, 01:18:54 pm
Just been watching a crow on the beach outside work trying to break open a shell using the 'fly up & drop onto stones' method. I'm not sure if it managed to get a meal, though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 14 January, 2011, 10:39:39 pm
I just saw a platypus!  I've never seen one in the wild before as they are largely nocturnal. This one must be having trouble sleeping.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 14 January, 2011, 11:09:05 pm
I just saw a platypus!  I've never seen one in the wild before as they are largely nocturnal. This one must be having trouble sleeping.

Nice one  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 14 January, 2011, 11:21:18 pm
I just saw a platypus!  I've never seen one in the wild before as they are largely nocturnal. This one must be having trouble sleeping.

Nice one  :thumbsup:

Unless the poor bugger has been displaced by the flooding.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 16 January, 2011, 02:33:18 am
No I'd run away from the flooding and the locals say they arw often there and led me to the spot. Excellent break. Back to the clean up in a much improved frame of mind.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 16 January, 2011, 08:10:24 pm
Catkins! Lots 'n lots of 'em. Great clouds in the trees.

It's January, FFS, & December were reet cold. What's gone wrong with the world?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 16 January, 2011, 09:40:47 pm
Whilst crossing Anglesey on a train this afternoon, a nice, if fleeting, view of a peregrine perched on a wall.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 17 January, 2011, 07:08:48 pm


TinyURL preview enabled  !!! Never heard of it. OK then  ...


(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/275081/3386c9000/I4152.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TimO on 17 January, 2011, 07:19:26 pm
[img]http://tinyurl.com/659d7ss[/img]

The trouble with using TinyURL for an image, is that those of us with TinyURL preview enabled, see bugger all!

There's also little reason, since the whole point of TinyURL is to make the URL smaller if you are likely to need to type it, or if you want to use it where the total number of characters is limited, like in a tweet.  Since neither case applies, there's no real reason why you can't just use the full original URL for the jpg.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 18 January, 2011, 08:45:44 am
Actually seen on Saturday in our back garden around 8am. Bold aren't they? They wandered about a bit locked together.

(http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b176/Riggers_1956/2-foxes.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 18 January, 2011, 09:09:58 am
20 live fish rescued from our swimming pool and returned to the Brisbane River!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 19 January, 2011, 09:08:42 am
Three swans just flew over my head. If my life was fiction that would probably be a symbol of somethingorother.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 19 January, 2011, 11:38:10 am
The portent of your symbolism has flown over my head too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 19 January, 2011, 11:42:47 am
It's an omen of much good-fortune: you were lucky indeed not to be crapped on from a great height by three swans.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 19 January, 2011, 01:22:34 pm
The last time I was aware of three swans flying over my head, I was standing my the side of the Avon in Tewkesbury.  One of the swans hit an overhead power cable and, after a flash and a bang, landed with a thud and a wisp of smelly smoke, in the reeds just along the riverbank from where I stood.  Then people started emerging from their moored boats to enquire (a) what the hell than noise was and (b) why the electricity had gone off.  I pointed to the swan and to the power line that was now draped across the river bank into the river.

Eventually two police officers turned up and took the swan away in a body bag.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: JStone on 20 January, 2011, 12:04:09 pm
Two goldfinch in the tree directly outside the office window - the first I've seen for ages. A colleague says there were 10-15 there earlier this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 22 January, 2011, 04:37:36 pm
The bulbs in my window boxes are starting to come up.  :D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 22 January, 2011, 06:58:43 pm
There were catkins this morning in the park.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 23 January, 2011, 08:45:15 am
(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/275076/09b069e35/I4149.jpg)


I think one of the females of the herd had tried to get away but the male had tracked her down (poor choice of hiding place) and was about to bring her back in to the fold.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 23 January, 2011, 07:43:27 pm
There were catkins this morning in the park.
A week later than my first sighting here. Is Southend colder than Reading?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 January, 2011, 02:23:49 pm
There were catkins this morning in the park.
A week later than my first sighting here. Is Southend colder than Reading?

Probably not. They appear to have been there a while. I just haven't noticed.

(http://peter.chesspod.com/gallery/d/10080-5/Image0122.jpg)

27lb common carp caught this morning. We just happened to be strolling past when the angler was landing it. High 20s are quite often caught but I've never heard of anyone landing a 30lb fish.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 25 January, 2011, 03:09:59 pm
That'll keep his tummy full for a while!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 January, 2011, 05:24:38 pm
That'll keep his tummy full for a while!

Except he will have put it back in the water straight after the photo was taken.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 25 January, 2011, 05:26:41 pm
Is that because of rules or for some other reason? And if it's rules, are they national or local, year-round or seasonal?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 25 January, 2011, 06:55:55 pm
I saw a muntjac. Nothing unusual in that, I see them every day, so often that in this house we refer to them as rat deer.
This one however, didn't see me, despite the fact that I was in a car with headlights on. It ran into the side of the car.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 25 January, 2011, 06:59:08 pm
[on sunday] a peacock, sitting watching the world go by from the top of a six foot gate about 5 miles south east of cambridge.  Took me quite by surprise.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 25 January, 2011, 07:20:40 pm
Is that because of rules or for some other reason? And if it's rules, are they national or local, year-round or seasonal?

In general in the UK fishing for carp is for sport not eating. Most lakes with anything that size have been specially stocked to attract the fishermen and the owners complain if you do not follow the catch and release principle.

So it tends to be the rules. If however you are fly fishing for trout or salmon then the lake/river owners tend to let you keep up to a set limit per person. EDIT - but you have paid to fish in either location, its just that carp is not considered food in the UK. This all led to a number of angry fishermen a few years back when the influx of Eastern Europeans came in as they not only didn't pay to fish but then caught the prize carp and took them home for dinner.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 25 January, 2011, 10:09:27 pm
Interesting. In Poland you see many artificial lakes deliberately stocked with a variety of species including carp, where you can pay to fish - usually by the hour - but AFAIK you can keep and eat what you catch. In fact these places usually provide a grill and picnic tables too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 26 January, 2011, 12:55:17 am
I've eaten eels, pike and perch that I've caught but I'd never consider eating a carp.

When we were in Ireland a few years ago we saw a chap catch a decent-sized bream from Lough Gill and he took that big snotty thing home to eat. A few days later we saw another guy catch a very decent sea trout (from where I stood it looked to be about 7lb) from the river as it flowed through Sligo town centre. He was fishing off one of the bridges but the fish took him ages to land (we were watching for at least half an hour and he had hooked it quite some time before we got there), and he had to walk among the tourists, rod held above his head, and make his way down to the river bank. Eventually when he landed the fish he threw it up into the crowd that had gathered to watch him. There must have been at least 200 people by that time and we all burst int a big round of applause for the guy. It really was some very skilful angling we saw that day.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Exit Stage Left on 27 January, 2011, 06:46:05 pm
A Little Egret, we also saw a Eurofighter Typhoon on a shakedown flight and some kind of attack helicopter. Yesterday we saw a whole load of Pinkfoot Geese, a Kestrel, a Bae Hawk, a Toucano and two Typhoons doing some sort of close formation flying.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Exit Stage Left on 27 January, 2011, 07:10:50 pm
Interesting. In Poland you see many artificial lakes deliberately stocked with a variety of species including carp, where you can pay to fish - usually by the hour - but AFAIK you can keep and eat what you catch. In fact these places usually provide a grill and picnic tables too.

Carp are bottom feeders and would taste of mud when freshly caught, that's why they are kept in tanks of fresh water next to the road prior to sale in Poland.

Quote
If you plan on eating Carp, they should never be cooked when first taken out of a pond, but be placed in a container in running water. This will help in getting rid of their somewhat muddy flavour. Here is a traditional carp recipe from Poland:


Carp (http://polishpoland.com/carp.htm)

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on 27 January, 2011, 09:00:14 pm
Traditionally you keep live carp in the bath for a few hours. I hadn't realised it was to 'demuddify' them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 28 January, 2011, 08:46:14 am
Last night.  Little owl, snowdrops, snowflakes.
This morning. Barn owl.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Exit Stage Left on 28 January, 2011, 07:20:20 pm
Barn Owl and a group of five Bewick Swans this morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Nuncio on 28 January, 2011, 10:16:15 pm
Meteorite.  I think.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 30 January, 2011, 11:25:39 am
A couple of goats cavorting in the open road, as we navigated through the farmland south of Long Eaton on the EM Fixedwheel ride
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 30 January, 2011, 12:07:00 pm

Buzzard by Cottenham cambs
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 30 January, 2011, 04:58:33 pm
3 dippers
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 30 January, 2011, 05:48:30 pm
Four long-tailed tits cavorting in a tree (a cherry, I think) & eating the new buds.

Anna kite over Cemetery Junction.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: sg37409 on 30 January, 2011, 11:56:44 pm
A stoat in his winter plumage dashed across the road between me and on-coming car, then once the car had gone he was sat up in the verge watching me grind up the hill.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 31 January, 2011, 07:39:23 pm
Redpolls and goldfinches briefly cheered up my walk around the prison exercise yard* today. 

*as I think of the industrial estate in which I have the misfortune to work.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 02 February, 2011, 06:26:11 pm
A coot building a nest.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 02 February, 2011, 09:14:51 pm
Barn Owls.

4 separate sightings on the way to work.
How big are their territories?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 02 February, 2011, 11:00:03 pm
Barn owl, this evening. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: LindaG on 02 February, 2011, 11:07:59 pm
Barn owl, this evening. 

Ooh, where?  Home town or work town?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 03 February, 2011, 10:51:22 pm
Barn owl, this evening. 

Ooh, where?  Home town or work town?

Just south of work town, out in the countryside....the stars were very bright and I thought to myself, I bet there's owls about! And then one flew by.  Was out for a works meal at a country gastro-pub - I had a melt-in-the-mouth lamb shank - in fact, I shall take you and Crusty there when you come down.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 04 February, 2011, 07:00:42 pm
4 goosanders and a comorant on the canal today
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: TheLurker on 07 February, 2011, 08:19:06 am
Yesterday, heard but not seen. Skylark. Out by Stanford in the Vale
Seems awfully early to me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 07 February, 2011, 11:58:44 am
Yesterday:

A handsome Stag and two Does crossing the road near Uppark, West Sussex.
A several of Red Kites in the Chilterns - near Latimer.
Two buzzards doing their soaring thing.
An entire family (so it seemed) of Badgers ambling across the road near Welwyn.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 07 February, 2011, 12:25:38 pm
Snowdrops, crocuses close to opening, & even a few primroses.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 07 February, 2011, 12:38:07 pm
A fox, this morning, in broad daylight (about 11.30). Scruffy looking bugger with a mangy tail.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 07 February, 2011, 01:27:48 pm
This one regularly kips on my neighbour's shed roof , sometimes having a lie-in until about 2 o'clock in the afternoon.


(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/282027/cf97d21ec/I4177c.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: CountrySickness on 08 February, 2011, 08:43:41 pm
A woodcock, giving me the usual woodcock- heart attack as it sprang up from by my feet.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 13 February, 2011, 05:04:15 pm
Seen today, from the comfort of our living room - gs woodpecker, greenfinch, bullfinch, chaffinch, siskin, redpoll, long tailed tit, blue tit, great tit, coal tit, dunnock, blackbird, woodpigeon, magpie.  I just wish the RSPB Birdwatch had been today !
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 13 February, 2011, 09:53:57 pm
Sheep, Highland cattle, Llamas, Shetland ponies and an eagle stooping. Am at my childhood home in the Grakpian highlands and quite spoiled for choice.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: matthew on 13 February, 2011, 11:27:51 pm
yesterday, two red kites soaring over the church yard.

I remember as a 12 year old the school minibus pulling over to point out a red kite in Mid wales, as they were that rare. Now we have them in East Berks.

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Manotea on 13 February, 2011, 11:41:28 pm
Riding home last night a badger crossed the A23 near Coulsdon. Stopped and looked at me as I went past. Just about the first time I've seen a badger (live) in the wild.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Martin on 13 February, 2011, 11:51:52 pm
Riding home last night a badger crossed the A23 near Coulsdon. Stopped ad looked at me as I went past. Just about the first time I've seen a badger (live) in the wild.

Saw one (also the only one ever) crossing the road at Wakehurst a few years ago; they are incredibly "whatever" and don't seem to react to road traffic at all

reminds me; several years ago I was entrusted with a carload of Geermans so decided to take them to Beachy Head; passing a "Badgers" warning sign on the way back they enquired what Badgers was; having temporarily forgot it was Dach in German I said "it's a black and white wild mammal"

" oh a Zebra" came the reply
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 14 February, 2011, 08:09:17 am

reminds me; several years ago I was entrusted with a carload of Geermans so decided to take them to Beachy Head; passing a "Badgers" warning sign on the way back they enquired what Badgers was; having temporarily forgot it was Dach in German I said "it's a black and white wild mammal"

" oh a Zebra" came the reply

So a dachshund hunts badgers? The look to be too small to me,
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 14 February, 2011, 09:56:09 am
They're just for going down the holes & chasing them out.

I was always confused by my understanding of 'Dach' as 'roof'

ETA: 'badger' is 'Dachs'
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: cycleman on 14 February, 2011, 11:07:29 am
5 buzzards circling over downside near cobham as i rode through  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 15 February, 2011, 09:10:54 am
I glanced out of my back window and an unusual flight pattern caught my eye. A closer look revealed a male Sparrowhawk sitting on the roof of my bird feeder table. Presumably I had seen its lunge towards some prey.
Earlier there had been a mixed flock of Tits in the same area , Great , Blue , Coal and Long Tailed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: IanDG on 18 February, 2011, 12:17:38 am
2 stags and an eagle on the N. Harris estate

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5259/5454300879_83410d23d0.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/acf_windy/5454300879/)
Stags (http://www.flickr.com/photos/acf_windy/5454300879/) by windy_ (http://www.flickr.com/people/acf_windy/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 February, 2011, 09:20:20 am
I can't see the eagle ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 18 February, 2011, 12:22:36 pm
There it Clarrers…

(http://i19.photobucket.com/albums/b176/Riggers_1956/Eagle--Stags.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 February, 2011, 12:39:10 pm
Ah.  Thank you.  It's obvious when you know, isn't it?



Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 20 February, 2011, 05:11:23 pm
Barn Owls.

4 separate sightings on the way to work.
How big are their territories?
Catching up late on this one...

Not sure on the size of barn owl territories, but I have seen five hunting the same piece of marshy grassland at the same time, so they can't be that big or that strongly held.  Mind this was on an RSPB reserve and all the birds involved were feeding young at the time.

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 20 February, 2011, 05:12:16 pm
Yesterday, heard but not seen. Skylark. Out by Stanford in the Vale
Seems awfully early to me.

I have heard them in January on the hills near here.  Most wonderful way of lifting the spirit in the middle of winter!

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: IanDG on 20 February, 2011, 05:32:10 pm
20 mile ride, 2 buzzards, a heron and 3 cars ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tail End Charlie on 20 February, 2011, 05:45:48 pm
A couple of weeks ago I was out riding and came across a large bird of prey which had been killed by a car. It was a large bird and I stopped to pick it up, its wingspan would be around 4 feet. It weighed perhaps three pounds. Underneath it was the rabbit it had been feeding on. I threw it to the side of the road. 
Today I passed it and it is still there, gently rotting away. I'll take a picture next time.

How do I tell what it was?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 20 February, 2011, 06:25:58 pm
A couple of weeks ago I was out riding and came across a large bird of prey which had been killed by a car. It was a large bird and I stopped to pick it up, its wingspan would be around 4 feet. It weighed perhaps three pounds. Underneath it was the rabbit it had been feeding on. I threw it to the side of the road. 
Today I passed it and it is still there, gently rotting away. I'll take a picture next time.

How do I tell what it was?
http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/families/ (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/families/) is a good start.

I'd guess buzzard on the grounds they're big, common and eat rabbits. But without some other distinguishing features it's a bit difficult

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 24 February, 2011, 08:22:09 pm
2 deer this morning on the way to work :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 26 February, 2011, 04:37:05 pm
About 20 waxwings in the trees at the back of the house.  Armchair birdwatching, can't beat it  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 26 February, 2011, 05:24:32 pm
^ since my last post also seen a treecreeper and a gs woodpecker in the same trees.  And the waxwings just paid another visit.  Meanwhile, on the feeders in the garden, loads of blue/coal/long tailed tits.  We're certainly enjoying our new house.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 27 February, 2011, 03:40:11 pm
Waxwings....you lucky sod.

Today, loadsa buzzards and 2 red kites :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 27 February, 2011, 06:09:05 pm
Waxwings were back again today, about 30 of them.  They seem to be eating the leaf buds on the tree.  Not sure if the tree is going to appreciate their attention much.  But its probably endured worse.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 28 February, 2011, 06:36:58 pm
We saw and heard a magpie on sunday. Not very unusual but it was coughing. Not sure whether it was a real cough or it was putting it on.
I heard one in almost the same place last weekend making "odd" noises. Are they mimics?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 February, 2011, 07:31:01 pm
A dipper this morning, on my way to work  :)

Sorry, unable to shed any light on the coughing magpie.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 28 February, 2011, 07:32:42 pm
We saw and heard a magpie on sunday. Not very unusual but it was coughing. Not sure whether it was a real cough or it was putting it on.
I heard one in almost the same place last weekend making "odd" noises. Are they mimics?

If you read Gerald Durrell's "My family and other animals" magpies most certainly are mimics. I don't suppose he made all that up.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: tonycollinet on 28 February, 2011, 07:36:48 pm
It's dead badger ago go round here. Seen three in the last couple of days - they all look juvenile.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 28 February, 2011, 07:59:36 pm
If you read Gerald Durrell's "My family and other animals" magpies most certainly are mimics. I don't suppose he made all that up.

I don't suppose he did, thanks. I'll put it on my reading list.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 28 February, 2011, 08:03:57 pm
We saw and heard a magpie on sunday. Not very unusual but it was coughing. Not sure whether it was a real cough or it was putting it on.
I heard one in almost the same place last weekend making "odd" noises. Are they mimics?

If you read Gerald Durrell's "My family and other animals" magpies most certainly are mimics. I don't suppose he made all that up.

He is believed to have made up substantial parts of it though.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 28 February, 2011, 08:12:06 pm
Aha, I did wonder at the not making stuff up comment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: AnthCC on 28 February, 2011, 10:56:16 pm
At the back door last night

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5058/5482817252_f8449277e2.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/blackpuddinonnabike/5482817252/)

Before retiring to the neighbour's garden (he'd been chased out of the garden by our wee cat the night before)

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5135/5482223495_d5ec50cb46.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/blackpuddinonnabike/5482223495/)

Buzzard over the centre of Edinburgh at lunchtime today

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5255/5485854726_6684c0c469.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/blackpuddinonnabike/5485854726/)

(sorry, been taking a lot of wildlife shots recently - set up EdinburghWildlife (http://www.edinburghwildlife.com) in the time I've been away...)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 01 March, 2011, 07:08:33 am
set up EdinburghWildlife (http://www.edinburghwildlife.com) in the time I've been away...

Looks interesting  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andrew_s on 01 March, 2011, 06:52:53 pm
Buzzard over the centre of Edinburgh at lunchtime today
That's a sparrowhawk
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: AnthCC on 02 March, 2011, 11:29:25 am
Buzzard over the centre of Edinburgh at lunchtime today
That's a sparrowhawk

Now see it did bug me at the time, the wings weren't right, but it was soaring much much more like a Buzzard.

I do, naturally, have a Sparrowhawk shot... ;)

(http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4107/5206158643_89ba40b2e4.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/blackpuddinonnabike/5206158643/)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 02 March, 2011, 09:45:47 pm
Nice , a male Sparrowhawk appeared briefly on my bird feeding table a couple of days ago but it had gone by the time I got my camera.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 03 March, 2011, 12:36:20 pm
Buzzard over the centre of Edinburgh at lunchtime today
That's a sparrowhawk
Now see it did bug me at the time, the wings weren't right, but it was soaring much much more like a Buzzard.

Possibly displaying (round and round in circles, getting higher and higher, with occasional fluttery bursts of flapping??).

This lot Edinburgh Sparrowhawks - hawkwatch home | Edinburgh Hawkwatch (http://www.edinburghhawkwatch.org.uk/) might be interested.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 03 March, 2011, 02:01:56 pm
A woodcock

The RSPB: Woodcock (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/w/woodcock/index.aspx)

I've never seen one before, but we were pootling about in a swampy bit of land behind our barn this morning and disturbed one who was resting up in the undergrowth. Positive ID by the Woodland Trust chap I was with :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 03 March, 2011, 02:04:05 pm
I saw a couple of woodcocks when strolling around with my brother on Christmas Day.

They are not the sort of bird recommended for someone with a weak heart.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SteveC on 04 March, 2011, 07:45:48 pm
Fox.  Yesterday lunchtime.  I was riding back to work and was passing the last bit of countryside before the edge of Yeovil.  A car 'parps' its horn and I look and see a fox in the road.  It ambles into the hedge line and proceeds to stand there as I rode past.  I must have been within 10 feet of it at the very most.  It was totally uninterested in me.  Didn't even bother looking at me.

Never been that close to a wild one before!

S
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: rogerzilla on 05 March, 2011, 07:18:41 pm
A red kite in our village.  We're going to my parents' house tomorrow, so we'll probably see theirs - they feed them bacon.

Earlier this week in the woods near work, some other large bird of prey, possibly an owl of some kind staying up late.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 05 March, 2011, 09:09:10 pm
A red kite in our village.  We're going to my parents' house tomorrow, so we'll probably see theirs - they feed them bacon.
<snip>
If your parents have only one kite, I'd be worried that the salt in the bacon might have been bad for the other birds' health ;)

They're a bit commoner than that, in that part of the Kennet valley IME. Nevertheless they are glorious birds to watch - truly masters of the air that make even soaring buzzards look inefficient. Nice to hear they've spread west as far as your place.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 05 March, 2011, 09:16:01 pm
This morning a roe deer stood by the railway line just a bit south of Three Bridges.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 05 March, 2011, 10:28:09 pm
An emu?), between Newdigate and Rusper.

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_4-9WXGlMFks/TXKBsU1J3gI/AAAAAAAACWc/p0rGf1CieC4/s512/IMGP5283.JPG)

It seems to be missing some feathers on its head.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Canardly on 05 March, 2011, 10:39:15 pm
Chernobyl wild fowl?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: delthebike on 06 March, 2011, 08:39:57 am
A curlew(?) near to the pier, Southend on Sea.
(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/_45o2t790K90/TXNHSP7GawI/AAAAAAAAGJM/rnVPyIDI22Q/wader.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 06 March, 2011, 04:23:38 pm
The waxwings are back in the garden just now, about 40 of them.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 06 March, 2011, 06:07:15 pm
Here are some I prepared earlier:

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/_4-9WXGlMFks/TXPL0Gc5ppI/AAAAAAAACYc/bBIKgXJaXxw/s512/IMGP4985.JPG)

(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/_4-9WXGlMFks/TXPMqI1KxrI/AAAAAAAACYc/7LxdRQtSH90/s720/IMGP4983.JPG)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 06 March, 2011, 07:52:21 pm
I saw a kite today, just on the Skirrid.  They're not common at all here and that's only the second I've seen below the Black Mountains
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Crumbling Nick on 06 March, 2011, 09:26:29 pm
Was explaining to a riding companion, during recovery from Weatheroak Hill, that there were lapwings last year in one of the roadside fields & they might have been nesting there.

Right on cue, a peewit emerged from the field, waved its wings about in case we hadn't identified it properly, and settled back to walking. No calls/song, no display flight, and without binoculars I'd have struggled to distinguish another bird from the bigger stones in the field. But... psychic bird? ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 06 March, 2011, 10:14:10 pm
A curlew(?) near to the pier, Southend on Sea.
(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/_45o2t790K90/TXNHSP7GawI/AAAAAAAAGJM/rnVPyIDI22Q/wader.jpg)


I reckon it is.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 06 March, 2011, 11:10:40 pm
Looks like a very straight beak to me.  Um.... I dunno... Godwit?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 07 March, 2011, 12:17:15 pm
A raven mobbing a buzzard yesterday (it's a bit funny using the word mobbing for one bird).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: PaulR on 08 March, 2011, 01:06:36 pm
greater spotted woodpecker in the garden this morning as I wend to unshed the bike - being jolly noisy and bright in the sunshine
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 08 March, 2011, 03:06:58 pm
A Kingfisher on the canal in Rochdale yesterday morning.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 08 March, 2011, 06:23:32 pm
A skunk at Hampton Court , on a lead , being taken for a walk.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 09 March, 2011, 12:11:05 am
A green woodpecker on our lawn.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: longers on 09 March, 2011, 07:44:59 am
A pair of deers this morning under Hartshead Pike (ashton-u-lyne). They brightened up my last commute no end. Very boingy!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Chris S on 09 March, 2011, 09:39:41 am
A Buzzard being chased by a Kestral. I was moved to think "Pick on someone your own size."

Also - a field covered in hundreds of Fieldfares.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 12 March, 2011, 03:17:47 pm
Just added brambling to the house list  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 13 March, 2011, 06:25:42 pm
A pair of buzzards circling over Little Switzerland, down Boxhill way.

A parakeet over Betchworth.

An unknown yellow bird in a hedgerow. A bit bigger than a sparrow, a sort of yellow and black flecked breast.  Any ideas?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 13 March, 2011, 06:29:59 pm
The RSPB: Siskin (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/s/siskin/index.aspx) ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 13 March, 2011, 06:30:16 pm
^ The RSPB: Yellowhammer (http://www.rspb.org.uk/wildlife/birdguide/name/y/yellowhammer/index.aspx) ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 13 March, 2011, 06:54:12 pm
Looking at picture 2 on the yellowhammer page, I'd say that's it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 14 March, 2011, 12:08:29 pm
Two goldfinches have finally found the niger feeder I put in out for them in December!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 14 March, 2011, 12:23:07 pm
That reminds me - we saw these chaps at Centre Parcs

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/birds_1.jpg)

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/birds_2.jpg)

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/birds_3.jpg)

(http://www.alfiecat.co.uk/yetacf/birds_4.jpg)

The ringers were there netting and recording/ringing birds.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: cycleman on 14 March, 2011, 09:20:31 pm
i spotted a spotted woodpecker in fetcham yesterday morning woodpecking  ;D
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 15 March, 2011, 06:56:13 am
Yesterday my dreich ride to work was briefly cheered by the yellow of a grey wagtail.  And my equally dreich ride home was accompanied for several seconds by a female sparrowhawk skimming along at pedal height beside me.  So it wasn't all bad.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 17 March, 2011, 11:25:42 am
Not seen today at all, so I'm a fraud.

But on Saturday, in Stratford, I was distracted by something falling on the ground from an arch beside a building.

I thought it might have been pigeon droppings, but there was a lot of it coming down, so I looked closer.  It wasn't from under the roof bit, but from behind.  I then saw it was moss.

OK, I thought, someone's cleaning the rooftiles the other side.  No ladder apparent, so I thought I'd have a look.

It wasn't a person; it was a thrush-sized bird (couldn't see clearly as it was silhouetted and flew off fairly sharpish).  It was hopping along the roof picking up the blobs of moss and, rather than flying off with them for nestbuilding as I would have expected, dropping them over the edge of the gutter.

It's possible the bird was planning to come back later & pick them up off the ground, but there was more than might be needed for a nest. 

I wonder if there was something in the moss that the bird was eating, or collecting for its young...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 March, 2011, 11:30:35 am
Blackbirds do that and so do magpies. I'm there are plenty others which do too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 17 March, 2011, 11:43:22 am
May well have been a blackbird.  What was it doing?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 17 March, 2011, 11:45:44 am
May well have been a blackbird.  What was it doing?

looking for something that lives under the moss?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 17 March, 2011, 11:46:00 am
Well, if there was that much moss it must have had a leaf mould base I reckon, and that will have wrigglies living in it, I expect.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 17 March, 2011, 12:47:48 pm
Blackbirds seem to be hardwired to go nosing about underneath things. They throw the bark off our so-called flower beds & toss leaves about on the lawn. I guess they're looking for tasty noms rather than trying to recreate the "child's bedroom" look in nature.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 17 March, 2011, 06:47:07 pm
First saw this creature a couple of months ago and posted a pic earlier in this thread. This pic taken close up in sunlight shows the bird more clearly.  It lives with Tufted Duck and Red Crested Pochard in Bushy Park , Hampton Court.

(http://www.yudu.com/item_files/303808/294f5923a/I4225c.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tail End Charlie on 18 March, 2011, 10:08:25 pm
Sitting in my back garden after mowing the lawn this morning two buzzards circled overhead. Didn't realise I looked that knackered. Never seen them so close to home before.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 18 March, 2011, 11:25:42 pm
Blackbirds seem to be hardwired to go nosing about underneath things. They throw the bark off our so-called flower beds & toss leaves about on the lawn. I guess they're looking for tasty noms rather than trying to recreate the "child's bedroom" look in nature.
They are, they are - but they're pretty good at picking the right things to nose about under, i.e. things likely to have a population of nice tasty invertebrates squirming beneath 'em. Your bark provides an excellent habitat for blackbird food. They see it as a snack bar.

What they really like is a flowerbed dressed with nice fresh compost or other worm food. Do that, & they'll be rummaging merrily in no time at all - & finding plenty of yummy (to a blackbird) things. I have to protect any seedlings I put in compost-enriched soil, or the little feathered buggers'll root 'em up in their hunt for what lives underneath.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 20 March, 2011, 12:06:51 pm
Third dead badger by the road in a fortnight  :(

(click to show/hide)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 20 March, 2011, 12:17:37 pm
Bird skellingtons (outside a café):

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5058/5540825967_df904e7bf3_z.jpg) (http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5058/5540825967_40dbf05637_o.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 20 March, 2011, 03:11:53 pm
A cormorant flying along parallel to the shore and just inches above the almost flat calm surface. They must gauge their height by reference to the waves because the sea was so calm that a small boat's wake was clearly visible on the surface and the bird rose up a couple of feet to cross it before dropping back down again.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jurek on 20 March, 2011, 03:17:51 pm
A cormorant flying along parallel to the shore and just inches above the almost flat calm surface. They must gauge their hight by reference to the waves because the sea was so calm that a small boat's wake was clearly visible on the surface and the bird rose up a couple of feet to cross it before dropping back down again.

Sounds  8) - the way you've described it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 20 March, 2011, 05:07:27 pm
Three more species added to the 'birds seen from the house' list today - buzzard, goldcrest, goldfinch.  That takes the list to 27 since 1st Jan.   :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 20 March, 2011, 05:20:15 pm
Two deer going up the embankment  and into the woods between Balcombe and Three Bridges, which I was able watch easily because we were crawling along. The driver then apologised for our slow running and explained it was to avoid hitting the deer because "We don't want to hit the deer and the can damage the train".
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 21 March, 2011, 06:08:49 pm
On the Long Water at Hampton Court Palace I saw two pairs of Wigeon.
I stopped to look at an interesting creature* on a nearby pond , parked my bike against a tree , walked cautiously round the tree and was confronted by the back end of a Parakeet sticking out of a shoulder height hole in the tree trunk.

* which I now believe to be a Gadwall (and its mate)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 21 March, 2011, 06:31:18 pm
On a gloriously sunny and almost warm ride home today, (on my new bike  :)), 2 roe deer and several thousand pink footed geese.  (Or perhaps bean goose ?  I've no idea, I'll assume pink foot).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 21 March, 2011, 08:58:50 pm
On a gloriously sunny and almost warm ride home today, (on my new bike  :)), 2 roe deer and several thousand pink footed geese.  (Or perhaps bean goose ?  I've no idea, I'll assume pink foot).

Pinks, (OK, almost) absolutely certainly, in those numbers, in Scotland.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 21 March, 2011, 09:31:55 pm
On a gloriously sunny and almost warm ride home today, (on my new bike  :)), 2 roe deer and several thousand pink footed geese.  (Or perhaps bean goose ?  I've no idea, I'll assume pink foot).

Pinks, (OK, almost) absolutely certainly, in those numbers, in Scotland.

The SOC Gallery recently had a few shots of a mixed flock of pinkfoot and bean - even with the two species in the same shot and the bird guide in front of me I still can't tell the difference...The SOC - photo viewer (http://www.the-soc.org.uk/photo-viewer.htm?images/gallery2011/beangeese-slamannan-jan11b.jpg?Bean%20and%20Pink-footed%20Geese,%20Slamannan,%20Upper%20Forth,%20Jan%202011,%20�%20John%20Nadin)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 22 March, 2011, 04:24:46 pm
(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/reindeer.jpg)

Donner, Blitzen & friends having lunch.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mattc on 28 March, 2011, 08:44:37 am

Wild Boar in Britain (http://www.britishwildboar.org.uk/index.htm?map2.html)

I've never seen one but it seems possible.

They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !

(For those not reading the Audax board) many of us were rather sad to spot a piglet on the verge in the Forest of Dean on Saturday. Dead but quite fresh looking. Almost more orange than brown to my eyes, and about the size of a very fat jack russell.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Riggers on 28 March, 2011, 12:00:52 pm
Wasp! Just now.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: hellymedic on 28 March, 2011, 01:44:28 pm
Wasp! Just now.

David has reported many wasps in his observatory.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Eccentrica Gallumbits on 28 March, 2011, 09:13:26 pm
A ginormous bee.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 March, 2011, 09:34:45 pm
On a gloriously sunny and almost warm ride home today, (on my new bike  :)), 2 roe deer and several thousand pink footed geese.  (Or perhaps bean goose ?  I've no idea, I'll assume pink foot).

Pinks, (OK, almost) absolutely certainly, in those numbers, in Scotland.

The SOC Gallery recently had a few shots of a mixed flock of pinkfoot and bean - even with the two species in the same shot and the bird guide in front of me I still can't tell the difference...The SOC - photo viewer (http://www.the-soc.org.uk/photo-viewer.htm?images/gallery2011/beangeese-slamannan-jan11b.jpg?Bean%20and%20Pink-footed%20Geese,%20Slamannan,%20Upper%20Forth,%20Jan%202011,%20�%20John%20Nadin)

Ideally (in a mixed flock), you need a good view of their legs - bean goose legs are bright orange.  The first bean goose I ever saw (on the Black Isle, about his time of year, many years ago) was in a flock of about 1000 pinks that I was scouring for darvic rings (those 2-colour plastic engraved ones with a unique code for each bird) - and suddenly there was a pair of bright orange legs that belonged to a bird that otherwise looked quite like a pink-footed goose.

For a long time they were treated as a single species.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 March, 2011, 09:37:50 pm
A ginormous bee.

Yeah - one of those was chasing FirstBorn as he was cycling round and round a quiet bit of drive at Pollock Halls yesterday.  Spring seems to have almost sprung (but a wet end to the week is on the cards ...).
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 28 March, 2011, 09:41:15 pm
Ideally (in a mixed flock), you need a good view of their legs - bean goose legs are bright orange.  The first bean goose I ever saw (on the Black Isle, about his time of year, many years ago) was in a flock of about 1000 pinks that I was scouring for darvic rings (those 2-colour plastic engraved ones with a unique code for each bird) - and suddenly there was a pair of bright orange legs that belonged to a bird that otherwise looked quite like a pink-footed goose.

Thanks for the tip - I'll keep a look out !

(Thinks...So why aren't they called orange footed geese ?  :))
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 28 March, 2011, 09:47:22 pm
Ideally (in a mixed flock), you need a good view of their legs - bean goose legs are bright orange.  The first bean goose I ever saw (on the Black Isle, about his time of year, many years ago) was in a flock of about 1000 pinks that I was scouring for darvic rings (those 2-colour plastic engraved ones with a unique code for each bird) - and suddenly there was a pair of bright orange legs that belonged to a bird that otherwise looked quite like a pink-footed goose.

Thanks for the tip - I'll keep a look out !

(Thinks...So why aren't they called orange footed geese ?  :))

Possibly because:  too obvious  ;) ?; Greenland white-fronts have orange legs too (but then there's more than one species of goose with pink feet ...); errr, some other reason ...

Not a clue, really.  In German, pink-footed goose is Kurzschnabelgans (short-billed goose) - which is possibly more usefully descriptive ...
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 28 March, 2011, 10:13:01 pm

Wild Boar in Britain (http://www.britishwildboar.org.uk/index.htm?map2.html)

I've never seen one but it seems possible.

They're quite numerous in the Forest of Dean now; some of the verges in the Forest have been rotavated by them.  They've crossed the Wye and are heading this way !

(For those not reading the Audax board) many of us were rather sad to spot a piglet on the verge in the Forest of Dean on Saturday. Dead but quite fresh looking. Almost more orange than brown to my eyes, and about the size of a very fat jack russell.

Orange isn't wild boar.
It's Duroc, outdoor pig.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 28 March, 2011, 11:26:44 pm
Seen on Saturday & Sunday in Perthshire:

Buzzards, red kites, reed bunting, curlews, lapwings, kestrel, partridge, red grouse, deer (unspecified), dead red squirrel, yellowhammer, goldeneye, heard a GS woodpecker, saw some GSWs. And a starling at Loch of the Lowes which the staff thought was very unusual.

ETA - siskins
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: itsbruce on 29 March, 2011, 10:26:43 am
Kate Hoey MP, squashed against the wall of the tube beside me, on the Jubilee line last night on my way to see Elbow at the O2.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mattc on 29 March, 2011, 05:35:11 pm
Kate Hoey MP, squashed against the wall of the tube beside me, on the Jubilee line last night on my way to see Elbow at the O2.

Was there anyone else in the carriage?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 29 March, 2011, 06:13:49 pm
Is she a Wild Thing?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 29 March, 2011, 10:32:24 pm
Wild? She's absolutely livid!
Title: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 02 April, 2011, 02:07:31 pm
A swallow.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 03 April, 2011, 11:21:20 pm
Red kites in Aberdeenshire this today  :thumbsup: Loadsa buzzards, too.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 03 April, 2011, 11:30:20 pm
A slow worm in the garden. It slithered off under the fence before I could summon any other witnesses.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: bloomers100 on 04 April, 2011, 07:35:07 am
This morning two herds(?) of deer at different locations, a solo muntjac and I felt the waft of a pheasants wings on my face.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: SandyV on 04 April, 2011, 08:32:40 am
An echidna - in our yard!  We were alerted by our barking dogs who were unable to do it damage as it was rolled up tight.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 04 April, 2011, 07:25:58 pm
Red kites over Outwood. That's near Gatwick. They're spreading. Run for the hills.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 04 April, 2011, 08:03:59 pm
Red kites over Outwood. That's near Gatwick. They're spreading. Run for the hills.

Yep. In a few years they will be back in the streets of London picking up dropped chicken bones.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 April, 2011, 10:53:00 pm
They've long since mapped out all the fast food places in Reading that are careless with their scraps.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Simonb on 04 April, 2011, 10:55:42 pm
They've long since mapped out all the fast food places in Reading that are careless with their scraps.

They won't make it this far east (Ramsgate). The seagulls here are vicious.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: mike on 05 April, 2011, 02:45:40 pm
right outside my office window, about 3 yards from my chair - a sparrowhawk taking a pigeon mid-air and crashing to the ground, then flying off slowly with pigeon. 

 :thumbsup:   (unless you're a pigeon, in which case  :( )

Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tim Hall on 06 April, 2011, 11:35:40 pm
A squadron of five parakeets alongside the M25, between junctions 3 & 4.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Snakehips on 07 April, 2011, 05:42:31 pm
A squadron of five parakeets alongside the M25, between junctions 3 & 4.

Only five , that would make a pleasant change. They go over my house in hordes of up to 40 at a time.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ray 6701 on 08 April, 2011, 03:00:23 pm
The 1st bluebells I have seen this year & 3 Buzzards 2 a light colour & 1 dark brown whilst out walking yesterday.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 09 April, 2011, 05:29:31 pm
On a little ride this morning, several buzzards, a kestrel, and a sparrowhawk.  Oh, and a hen harrier  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Butterfly on 09 April, 2011, 10:43:42 pm
Some pretty butterflies (white ones with brown tipped wings) accompanied us up the road today. One of them stayed with us for ages - several hundred yards at least :D. There were also some yellow butterflies around the same area.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 10 April, 2011, 04:22:55 pm
Sea eagle south of Salen, Mull
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Ray 6701 on 10 April, 2011, 05:03:33 pm
Yesterday out on a ride with datameister we saw 2 Curlews & a Kestrel  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 10 April, 2011, 05:55:15 pm
Today, in Lincolnshire/Rutland :  1 red kite, several buzzards, 2 bullfinches, first swallow of the year, woodpecker (heard not seen) and several boxing hares.  A good day really!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 10 April, 2011, 07:05:17 pm
(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5225/5606445349_6559190e5d.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5606445349/)
blackbird (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5606445349/) by davidmamartin (http://www.flickr.com/people/davidmam/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: corshamjim on 10 April, 2011, 08:04:25 pm
That's a nice picture David.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Adrian on 10 April, 2011, 08:59:37 pm
Walking between Lewes and Brighton what I think was a peregrine falcon and several skylarks. TBH I didn't actually look for all the skylarks
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: woollypigs on 14 April, 2011, 05:20:06 pm
A Jay right outside my front door, SW6, looking like it was getting food for the little ones.

This is sixth animal that I have been told while growing up are rare to spot in built up areas and very shy to humans. All these I have seen within steps from my front door in London.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: cycleman on 15 April, 2011, 06:48:20 am
a heron being chased and force to land in a little  stream in a park in slough yesterday :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 15 April, 2011, 09:03:22 am
Chased by what?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 15 April, 2011, 09:20:49 am
Crows doing a mating dance,
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: cycleman on 16 April, 2011, 08:02:10 am
a crow  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 18 April, 2011, 06:27:23 pm
one less fewer adder

(http://i952.photobucket.com/albums/ae7/fboab/2011-04-18165204.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: clarion on 18 April, 2011, 10:10:56 pm
Adder subtracted?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andygates on 18 April, 2011, 10:12:53 pm
Evidence that the vole the cat brought in last week is alive and well and, er, nesting in my recycling-to-go.   :-\
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Peter on 18 April, 2011, 10:19:57 pm
Evidence that the vole the cat brought in last week is alive and well and, er, nesting in my recycling-to-go.   :-\

The vole that skittered across my path on yesterday's Spring Into The Dales is only just alive and well, by a few centimetres!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 19 April, 2011, 07:07:25 pm
A tadpole.

And a cormorant fishing.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 19 April, 2011, 10:56:15 pm
A mother duck with 18 ducklings.....18!!!!!!!!!!!  Surely a record!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 19 April, 2011, 11:03:47 pm
one less fewer adder

(http://i952.photobucket.com/albums/ae7/fboab/2011-04-18165204.jpg)


Sure not a grass snake? I posted a pic earlier of a similar one
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 19 April, 2011, 11:29:12 pm
A mother duck with 18 ducklings.....18!!!!!!!!!!!  Surely a record!

Not even close (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-13129199)  :o
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: corshamjim on 19 April, 2011, 11:33:38 pm
one less fewer adder

(http://i952.photobucket.com/albums/ae7/fboab/2011-04-18165204.jpg)


Sure not a grass snake? I posted a pic earlier of a similar one

That's an asphalt snake.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 21 April, 2011, 02:55:29 pm
A badger sett which had been undergoing maintenance last night or this morning. The fresh-dug earth thrown out of two holes was still damp. It's the biggest sett I know near here, a short walk from Satwell.

In the Chilterns, so plenty of red kites, of course.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 21 April, 2011, 08:29:56 pm
Night Heron.

Quite unusual for these shores and this one, on Two Tree Island, had generated quite a lot of interest amongst the spotting scope brigade.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 22 April, 2011, 08:07:30 pm
In the sun in front of our house this afternoon:

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5145/5643976266_c57a25f877_z.jpg)

Just shed his skin, I think.  All shiny-bright and just woken.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 22 April, 2011, 08:11:28 pm
That is a very nice picture, jealous!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 22 April, 2011, 08:30:05 pm
that is serpently certainly a super pic M.V.  8)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: corshamjim on 22 April, 2011, 08:37:35 pm
A buzzard and little baby rabbit.  Not together though, so ok for the rabbit.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: newtoncap on 22 April, 2011, 10:21:32 pm
Lots and lots of hares, 2 buzzards, 2 red kites.   I think it must be a very good year for hares, I see them on every ride!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 22 April, 2011, 10:41:19 pm
A buzzard. Over Gatwick. Bit far East, but not the first i've seen round here.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bluebottle on 23 April, 2011, 04:59:28 pm
A couple of whitethroats screachting away in darkest Chatham. Nice birds, shame about their song.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 23 April, 2011, 05:06:39 pm
A pair of great crested grebes busy building a nest, in the middle of Reading.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Meegat on 23 April, 2011, 05:25:07 pm
Lots of very cute rabbits!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Pingu on 23 April, 2011, 06:11:08 pm
Swallows, at last!
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 23 April, 2011, 06:50:18 pm


Lesser spotted woodpecker
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 23 April, 2011, 07:12:16 pm


Lesser spotted woodpecker

Oo where? I've never seen a lesser spotted.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 23 April, 2011, 08:25:35 pm
I have, in two places. One was in Hungary, but the other was in the Stodmarsh reserve in East Kent. They are as small as a robin.

http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/page/pic/?o=RrzKj&pic_id=519945&v=0&size=large
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 23 April, 2011, 08:32:21 pm
There were some small dying elms adjacent to my brother's house (I think there still are some) and a few years ago he had a few sightings as some (a pair I think) pecked under the loose bark for insects.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 24 April, 2011, 10:00:44 am
Just back from a glorious week in Dumfries & Galloway. Wall to wall sunshine, temps in the high teens/low twenties, masses of wild flowers and summer migrants. The only sign that it was still only April was that many of the trees were still bare. Amongst the wildlife spotted were pied flycatchers, ospreys, whitethroats, blackcaps, nuthatches, plenty of swallows and willow warblers, and this chap, seen near New Abbey...
(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5104/5649073422_8b620c0ce3_z.jpg)

Also several sightings of red squirrels in the garden of the cottage in which we were staying  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 24 April, 2011, 10:11:53 am
It's a lovely part of the country. We cycled across D & G on our way from Lowestoft to Ardnamurchan.  I must get around to spending a week or so there. I understand that even in that part of the world the dreaded midge still makes its presence felt so perhaps a week there in the summer is a  bad idea.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 24 April, 2011, 10:20:03 am
I understand that even in that part of the world the dreaded midge still makes its presence felt so perhaps a week there in the summer is a  bad idea.
We've found most bits of it are relatively ok for midges, it's just the forest areas that can be bad.  I've found the clegs to be more of a problem than the midges.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 24 April, 2011, 10:55:01 am


Lesser spotted woodpecker

Oo where? I've never seen a lesser spotted.

Outside the house were I live in south of Ely, pure chance, looked out the window and thought GS woodpecker, but then realised no red, and smaller than blackbird.

~Today saw loads of Hares, a Barn Owl and Hobby. And some lesser spotted twitchers, coffee stop at Welney, they've got a Blue Throat at the moment.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Jaded on 24 April, 2011, 10:59:32 am
A deer thing, last night on the road between Bibury and Barnsley. Scared and little, it clattered away off down the road as I passed it.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 24 April, 2011, 01:33:45 pm


Lesser spotted woodpecker

Oo where? I've never seen a lesser spotted.

Outside the house were I live in south of Ely, pure chance, looked out the window and thought GS woodpecker, but then realised no red, and smaller than blackbird.

~Today saw loads of Hares, a Barn Owl and Hobby. And some lesser spotted twitchers, coffee stop at Welney, they've got a Blue Throat at the moment.
look at the pic I took I linked to above. The other difference is that the GSW has wing patches, while the LSW has a sort of ladder of stripes up its back.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 24 April, 2011, 03:54:11 pm

Yep, thats it
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 24 April, 2011, 07:49:57 pm
Just a slowworm today.

Never seen lesser spotted woodpecker. Did see black woodpecker before on a ride - they're huge!  (pita to get a photo though)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: andym on 25 April, 2011, 11:10:38 pm
And another slow worm.

And a huge bird on a bit of dead tree, right above the path in the forest, 10 paces in front of me!  Anyone know if there are red kites in Germany? Of all the pics I've found, that seems to be the closest match.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 25 April, 2011, 11:13:31 pm
There are. We saw a lot of black kites in the Rhein and Mosel areas last May/June.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 26 April, 2011, 06:30:57 pm
And another slow worm.

And a huge bird on a bit of dead tree, right above the path in the forest, 10 paces in front of me!  Anyone know if there are red kites in Germany? Of all the pics I've found, that seems to be the closest match.

There are a lot of red kites there, indeed.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tourist Tony on 30 April, 2011, 02:29:11 pm
Can you believe it, another slowworm?

This one was in three pieces, a major piece with the head, very much alive, and its tail in two bits, one of which was still twisting. A magpie was feeding on it, of course on the head and body part, so I took that bit off the road and put it into the long grass where it might survive, and left the tail for tyhe bird.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: slowfen on 30 April, 2011, 05:21:21 pm

stoat bouncing along a footpath
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: a lower gear on 30 April, 2011, 09:39:50 pm
Moving a load of stuff in the log grass bit of the garden we (self and the two smaller gears) found a total of seven slow worms in a couple of square metres. One gave birth to a clutch of babies on my son's hand and, when put in the grass, gathered them up into a gelatinous ball and slithered off. Only one of the seven had a tail missing - it had healed over so was an oldish loss. Often find one or two slow worms when (infrequently) strimming this part of the garden but amazed to find so many today. 
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: fboab on 30 April, 2011, 10:33:40 pm
A ferret out for a walk with a cat.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 01 May, 2011, 11:24:16 pm
Mrs Wow, Butterfly and I spent a very happy few minutes watching a willow warbler singing away to himself. Very interesting how their tails bob in time with the  notes of the song.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: David Martin on 01 May, 2011, 11:37:09 pm
Just some gulls at the beach.

Tricky manual focussing with the 500mm mirror lens.

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5029/5676576481_2c0679cc57.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5676576481/)
DSC_6181 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5676576481/) by davidmamartin (http://www.flickr.com/people/davidmam/), on Flickr

(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5102/5677141318_af7c53055c.jpg) (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5677141318/)
DSC_6190 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidmam/5677141318/) by davidmamartin (http://www.flickr.com/people/davidmam/), on Flickr
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 02 May, 2011, 04:38:54 pm
A cuckoo, Red Moss near Edinburgh.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 02 May, 2011, 07:31:52 pm
Mayflies. Hordes of 'em flying by the Thames late yesterday, & dying all over the towpath & river, where they were being feasted on by assorted birds. Swans, ducks, gulls - even a couple of grebes.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Bledlow on 04 May, 2011, 08:28:15 pm
Grass snake, in the ponds at Thames Valley Business Park, Reading. Mrs B heard a rustle & glimpsed a head briefly poking out of some reeds. We waited a bit, then I made a small disturbance on the landward side, & it swam out. Mrs B pointed at it, & it immediately turned back. Maybe her suddenly outthrust arm was reminiscent of a herons neck extending. It was small enough to be at risk from a heron.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 04 May, 2011, 08:49:21 pm
Beaver.  Redwings and fieldfares singing.  Pair of goldeneye.

Slightly disappointing on the bird front  ;)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: pcolbeck on 04 May, 2011, 09:10:20 pm
A large hare running across the road this evening and  a barn owl just outside my house.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: border-rider on 05 May, 2011, 09:51:46 am
Foals:

(http://www.bosphorus.f2s.com/foal.jpg)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: her_welshness on 05 May, 2011, 12:51:18 pm
A pair of goldfinches, have never seen them before - they are so lovely to look at  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: jogler on 05 May, 2011, 08:06:09 pm
Two herons on the banks of the Macclesfield canal
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Tail End Charlie on 05 May, 2011, 09:54:48 pm
A stoat, nearly ran it over when it ran out in front of me.
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Mrs Pingu on 05 May, 2011, 10:04:09 pm
Beaver.  Redwings and fieldfares singing.  Pair of goldeneye.

Slightly disappointing on the bird front  ;)
Beaver! coooool.

Bats!
Saw my first one of the year tonight.  :)
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Rig of Jarkness on 06 May, 2011, 07:24:08 am
Beaver. 

One of the officially sanctioned ones or an escapee ?
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: RJ on 06 May, 2011, 10:04:08 am
Beaver. 

One of the officially sanctioned ones or an escapee ?

This was the genuine wild article (and thus indistinguishable from the "official" ones - the *ahem* escapes apparently speak with a German accent).

(Clues to rough location are in the original post - I was a bit off my normal patch ;))
Title: Re: Seen today
Post by: Wowbagger on 07 May, 2011, 11:27:39 am
Cuckoo, heard but not seen, in Priory Park.

I clearly heard it call 4 times and in a more rural setting wou