Saturday, 4 July 2009

Blowing in the wind

A quick weather update for Thursday and Friday.....Thursday was hot with a big splash in the middle that coincided with me unloading the delivery and Friday was a big splash with a nice bit at the end. If only all weather forecasts gave you that much info eh?
I'm sure most people know what it's like to want to see something so bad that you go blind to it. Twitching is a fair example - when you arrive for whatever rare bird, someone points out the directions and you can't see it for toffee. It's just the same on the tours - you get someone desperate to see something and you can be sure it's the one thing you won't get! It doesn't happen often but it happens. Anyway, it works the other way round too. You get folk that aren't bothered about what they see, as long as they have a good time, and it all just falls out of the woodwork. Today was one of those days. We started off with the WT Eagle closely followed by a cracking dog Otter. Golden Eagle was next on the hit list and we had to wait a whole five minutes for an eagle to clear the ridge. It was a WT, it was duly pointed out and I went for the scope. Scope in position, allowing for the birds movement I picked up an eagle, it banked around to show it was a juv Golden Eagle! Was I wrong with the first bird? Not a chance, the adult WT was sat on the ridge. The juv Goldie disappeared for a couple of minutes only to reappear with an adult bird. Another Golden Eagle approached from the opposite direction as the first two went behind the ridge! We moved on down the road and scanned the ridges again - 2 adult Golden Eagle and a juv WT Eagle this time. Off to lunch, I'm doing cups of tea when someone says 'What's that bird there?', you probably know the answer, 'Golden Eagle' says I. It marvellous what a bit of breeze will do as most of these birds really were just blowing in the wind. The pick of the bunch for me today was the Yellowhammer sitting on the fence. I don't see them often and it's a bigger treat to get them singing.We had a lot of Twite today too which was a surprise. Most of them were juvs but I've struggled to get them while they were breeding. Whinchats aplenty, male Crossbill perched up etc. While looking for Mountain Hare we came across this male Hen Harrier that really was blowing in the wind. I had time for one shot before he shot past the motor doing about 30mph then disappearing as I reverse down the road after him - you have to try!It looked like a bit of rain might spoil the pleasant weather we'd enjoyed through the day so we headed back for the sunny bits. Along the way I caught sight of a bit of red in the green so I hauled in and we walked back to find this fine looking stag. You can see the stag has a mouthful of grass and a Pied Wagtail on his back........I always though that Pied Wags ate insects, yeah? Have a look at this next shot........I'm sure the Wag's nicked the stags grass....I could be wrong though!

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