14 Jan 2009

Normal service will resume as soon as possible!

One………………..two. Oh, and there’s a Coal Tit. Yawn………………..Robin!
Blackbird! Dunnock – new for the day. What time is it? Only 12.00. Chaffinch. Male. Collared Dove. Chaffinch. Female. Goldcrest. Long-tailed Tit. Being house bound sucks! After having an operation on my foot Monday I’m unable to walk or drive for 2 weeks. Purgatory! I’m sat in the conservatory counting garden birds and wondering if the odds of finding a White-throated Sparrow under the feeders is greater or less than winning the lottery. Woodpigeon! Another new species for the day.

It’s reassuring to know I have so many friends keen to enquire as to my well- being. Mr Conlin even offered to come and peel grapes for me! Mind you he did text me asking if he could have my camera if the operation went wrong. Male Blackbird & four Blue Tits together.........

So no more birding for me unless I can persuade Mrs W to drive me up to the Wirral over the weekend for a bit of a sea watch. No more beer either after foolishly resolving not to drink any alcohol for the whole of January. No beer and no birding. As I said, purgatory! At least I’ve proved the latest feeder is Squirrel proof! That fooled the bloody tree rat.

The Cheshire & Wirral Bird Report 2007 dropped on the mat yesterday and a good read it is to, although the Desert Wheatear (a county first) suppressed at Crewe brings back bad memories.

Colin Wells has written an article outlining the history and future plans for the RSPB on the Dee Estuary with a management plant that includes breeding Marsh Harriers in 2011, Bearded Tits in 2012, Bitterns 2013 & Cranes in 2014! Some records are missing such as the Carr Lane Great-grey Shrike on the 21st October and many others haven’t had rarities forms submitted.
One bird that was well documented was Colin Jones’s superb Raddes Warbler along Lingham Lane. Another county first but one that stayed a single day. Other records bring back superb memories such as the Sabine’s Gull found by El Presidenté Conlin at Meols on 1st September resulting in a panic stricken Frank jumping through the broken window of the bus shelter we call No. 1 sea watching hide to try and get on it (he did). Or the Black Kite at Barnston identified by Steve Williams flying over the M53 as a Kite species and then re-found by him & Frank and re-identified as the Counties 2nd Black Kite. I pulled up just as the Kite flew directly over my head, pointed the camera and……………..nothing! I’d left the card at home. Shit, shit, shit. What about the White-tailed Eagle? Panic as I realised Mrs W would have to drive me as we were in her car at the locally famous Leasowe Lighthouse café (as famous to local birders as was Nancy Gulls watering hole at Cley). The first and only time she’s driven me on a twitch. I’m sure she was driving deliberately slowly.

And the biggest regret? Deciding to continue on to the office first rather than turning round and go straight for the White-rumped Sanpiper found by Mark Gibson on Frodsham No. 6. Frank went straight there and saw it just before it flew. I missed it by 30 minutes. Jammy git.

The text may be bland but it certainly invokes memories. Wren……… Where's that Sparrowhawk to liven things up a bit?
In recent days things have been hotting up on the N Wirral coast with Glaucous Gull & Cetti's Warbler all being found. My guess is next bird will be an Iceland Gull. With so many around at Arpely tip and Sandbach one's bound to turn up on the Wirral........................................................

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