Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Thrush Fuss

The past few visits I've made to the Aldcliffe area have been fairly uneventful, to be honest. The mild weather seems to be keeping wildfowl numbers at a low while the lack of harsh conditions allows many smaller birds to go about their business with relative ease and be less inclined to flock in numbers.

Duck numbers are overall pretty unimpressive right now with just a couple of goldeneye, 4 or 5 tufted duck and 30-odd each of wigeon and teal kicking around the pools.
Even the semi-resident greylags seem to have pushed off to somewhere more exciting...

Fieldfare & redwings
The one notable upward change has been the influx of thrushes, particularly fieldfare. So far this winter there have been very few fieldfare around the patch but in recent days there have been sizeable flocks feeding in the hawthorns along the cycle track.  
Redwing too, while having been present in fairly decent numbers have also increased significantly, as have blackbirds. A handful of song and mistle thrushes have added to this thrush-fest.

Derbyshire Dusky Delights

Talking of thrushes, the big news in the last week or so has been the discovery of a dusky thrush in Derbyshire.

Dusky thrush
This very rare visitor to the UK breeds in central Siberia and ordinarily spends the winter in south-east Asia, primarily in China.
Naturally such a scarce bird attracts a great deal of attention from the country's birding community and hordes of listers have descended upon the quaint Peak District village of Beeley.
Local media have gone mad with scores of unimaginative sub-editors opting for that perennial favourite headline "Twitchers Flock To...". Sigh. 

Anyhoo, here are a couple of rubbish shots I got yesterday by sticking my phone in front of my 'scope - the thrush was rather too close to get the whole bird in!
For further info about this fab bird and to see a frankly better photo click on this link from the BBC.



No comments: