Thursday, 25 August 2016

2017 Wildlife Calendars Ready!

A unique feature of the calendar is that it includes 300+  lines of info of what wildlife to see, & when & where to see it 
Goosander family (c) 2016 Jane Robinson
 My new 2017 Yorkshire Wildlife Calendar is hot off the press.  Featuring stunning photos of Hawfinch, Great White Egret, Firecrest, Cuckoo, Bee-eater, Green Woodpecker, Sparrowhawk, Great Crested Grebes, Goosander, Linnet, Redstart and Kingfisher.
Male Redstart

Almost all photos were taken within the old Yorkshire boundary by top-notch local photographers incl: Mike Ashforth, Maggie Bruce, Jane Robinson, Tony Robinson, Martin Standley and yours truly.  Cost £9.20 for 1 (incl P & P) to UK addresses only.  Cost £8 if collecting in person [2 calendars are £17.55, 3 calendars are £26.10, and 4 calendars are £34.10 by post]   
Bee-eater (c) 2016 Tony Robinson
These are lower resolution pictures.  The higher resolution images can only be seen on the actual calendars

Friday, 19 August 2016

Here's looking at You, Kid!

Yesterday afternoon a male Sparrowhawk popped in to the garden for a bath.  He didn't know that heavy rain was forecast today, and he would have unlimited water for the next 36 hours, or so!   He stayed for over 5 minutes, but was on the alert the whole time, looking for danger in every direction.   despite his vigilance, I was able to creep from the back of the room to almost to the front of the window, taking shots the whole time.  He appeared to have some brownish tail feathers in his tail, so he may not have been as mature as we originally suspected, but he was old enough to father a brood locally this year.
Despite looking through the double-glazing he hadn't spotted me
 Right profile
 Checking behind
 membrane coming over eyes for protection before a splash in the bath 
 Checking the rooftop
 Having a splash
White nape and back feathers, where outer feathers have been plucked off by thorns when chasing prey

 Thoroughly waterlogged

Monday, 8 August 2016

Spoonbills at Alkborough

Last week I visited Alkborough Flats, and was surprised to see as many as 11 Spoonbills.  This is the largest number of individuals I've seen on the Humber.  As you can see from some of the photos several of these were immature birds - the ones with black tips on their primaries.  These birds must have had a wonderful breeding season on the near continent, as prevailing winds can't be responsible for bringing quite so many of these strange looking birds to these shores.
All Spoonbill photos (c) 2016 Jane Robinson
My classes will be resuming towards the end of September and we will be visiting Alkborough, but it is very unlikely that the Spoonbill will still be there, so I let all my 'students' know about the birds, so they could visit to try and find them.  Several people have let me know that they've seen them including Jane, Pat, Dave & Joan from Friday mornings, Simon & Chris from Friday afternoons, and Lynn from Wednesday mornings.  They all saw more Spoonbills than I did, with the record currently standing at 15.
 Spoonbill, Avocet, Black-tailed Godwit & Black-headed Gull
Same Species, plus a Cormorant
 Record Shot of Greenshank (c) 2016 Lynn Hall
 The Maze at Julian's Bower (c) 2016 Lynn Hall