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Sunday, 8 January 2012

Blogger's Beano... Sunday 8th January

Today I joined forces with fellow local birder,nature lover, and  blogger, Jason K..aka..Shenstone Birder. The object of this mornings exercise was to visit a Tundra Bean Goose frequenting a corner of South Staffordshire, view a showy Tawny Owl, and get back in time for lunch to maintain domestic harmony. As the target locations are on my doorstep, timing was not an anticipated problem

However, not wishing to neglect my local patch, I  first scooted over to Ladies Pool around 10am for 10 minutes, enjoying a Pair of Coal Tits outside my house on the way . Of note on this very brief sojourn, were Nuthatch, calling in the adjacent wood, a Litlle Grebe and 5 Tufted Ducks on the pool.

Right on cue the sunshine vanished as Mr K arrived with our transport ( thankfully he had brought the car, the horse getting it's rest on the Sabbath). We headed for the Highgate Common area where the Goose had been in residence with some Greylags. Unfortunately, on reaching the location, it had decamped, as had the Greylags, and the area was fairly birdless, save for a Lesser Black Backed Gull, Pied Wagtail, and a Blue Tit. We scouted the fields on adjacent lanes, finding a large Fieldfare (Year tick) and Redwing flock, but our Goose had gone. You have to take these knocks on the chin in birding, and we moved on to another location.

On the way to our next planned stop, I ticked off Kestrel for the yearlist. Would the Tawny Owl be showing, or would I luck out ..?
Thankfully, the Tawny Owl showed well for 10 minutes, I was chuffed and privileged to get such corking views. After a while he dropped down into the tree ( see Video, quite comical), obviously bored with the admiration we were both laying on him. Whilst in the area I firmed up my year list with a Nuthatch sighting, and a nice couple of Coal Tits showed well.

With time in the bank, we stopped off finally at Brakemill Pool, to check the area for Corn Bunting and the Pool for anything interesting that may have dropped in. What we did see, was Sparrowhawk, a couple of hundred BHG's, LBBG, Gold Crest and Song Thrush (year tick).

 Having only head Tawny Owl previously, today was a red letter day for me. The addition of 3 other year ticks rounded off an enjoyable couple of hours in company of Jase. Thanks go to him.


  1. Nice post Mark. Yes it was an enjoyable trip out...just a shame about the Bean Goose but then...that's birding (and twitching) for you....there's no guarantees. Imagine travelling hundreds of miles to twitch a long stayer for it to be thanks!

    I'm not quiyte sure about the 'Oooh he's gone down' comment thats heard on the video footage. Sounds like I'm narrating a porn film!

  2. Toatlly agree about the long distance twitch, it's not my bag.
    I didn't realise there was sound til after I had uploaded it, could have been much worse I'm sure !)

  3. Classic Tawny Owl behaviour :-) Nice read today as well.

  4. An interesting post mark. A pity about the Bean Goose but you still saw some great species all the same especially so the Tawny Owl. A great video with soundtrack!
    I scan the Gulls at Brake Mill Pond and only ever get BHG' visit maybe I will get a!

  5. Thanks for the comments Warren and Pam. That Bean Goose has scooted up to Chelmarsh apparently so there is still a chance of catching up with it there or somewhere else locally at the weekend.