Saturday, 13 April 2013

Ideford revisited

Having recced Ideford Common with Annabelle & Libby last week, we returned yesterday for the DBPS meeting, only this time without the blue sky. The feeders in the car park were busy again, with lots of Siskins & Coal Tits, and a couple of Bramblings amongst the visitors. A few people also saw a Redpoll in the bushes underneath the feeders, but unfortunately I didn't see it.

Annabelle led us off for our walk around the common in the rain, although luckily it didn't last too long. We spent a while trying to track down a pipit which we thought may be a Tree Pipit, and identify a bird that looked like a female Stonechat but had an 'odd face' (As David put it). It turned out to be a Meadow Pipit & a Stonechat carrying nesting material.

Pipit hunting
However, shortly after we did in fact find a Tree Pipit, which very obligingly sat in a tree right in front of us & gave us great views in the scope. There were also several Swallows, and a few Yellowhammers which I kept missing.
David, Joan & Wally probably looking at a Yellowhammer!
We went down to the field where we'd seen Yellowhammers & a flock of Meadow Pipits last visit, but not this time, although there were 2 deer.

The view was still lovely even without the Yellowhammers
I finally saw a Yellowhamer when a gorgeous male sat in the top of a tree giving us great views in the scope, well it did until a Chinook helicopter flew very low right over the top of us. We also had a Chiffchaff chiffing & chaffing below us in the trees.

There were 2 Bramblings near the track as we made it back to the car park for lunch. We ate whilst watching the feeders, but despite lots of activity, the Redpoll didn't reappear. Great Spotted Woodpecker & Dunnock were added to the list, making a total of 26 for me for the day, although I did miss a few.

This was the first time that the DBWPS has visited the site on a field trip. We saw lots of good birds & it's certainly got the potential to turn up something rare. David, the society's field trip organiser, was so impressed that it's likely to remain in the schedule next well done to Annabelle who suggested this as a venue & led the visit.
Lunch with feathered entertainment
Little Miss Muffet strikes again.....although this time the tuffet was a bit damp!

After lunch most of us went on to Exminster Marsh, where we actually had some blue sky as well as a Marsh Harrier, House & Sand Martins, White Wagtails & a beautiful male Redstart. A Bar-headed Goose was also lurking in the distance with some Canada Geese, which I think has been about for a while. Even though it's a 'plastic' bird, it's the first time I've ever seen one, so was quite nice to see.

Watching the Bar-headed Goose

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