Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Stranger on the Shore...Oh What a Lark!

 13th Oct.  Heading up the coast with Lee today and we just had to try for the Shore Lark.  Once along the beach  it wasn’t hard to find as we just had to look in the direction the cameras and telescopes faced.  Yes there were a few birders about, testifying to the scarcity of this species these days.  It’s only the second Shore Lark I’ve seen in Northumberland, the first one being self found among the Twite at Cresswell a few years ago.  Having had our fill and having taken a few record images we headed north.  A very nice species in the bag.  We stopped at Newbiggin to take in a few Mediterranean Gulls, well we had to pass the time away somehow.

Shore Lark record
On arrival at Cresswell Pond we found a number of cars parked.  Was there something special here we wondered?  Or was it just the warm sun tempting folk out?  The latter I think, but there had been a Firecrest there earlier in the day which we missed so we made do with numbers of Goldcrest and the Tree Sparrows along the path to the hide.  There was already a few folk in the hide and the pond was looking at its best, work having been carried out on the sandbank.  There was lots of mud and sand showing and numbers of waders.  Golden Plover, Lapwing, Sanderling, Dunlin, Redshank, Curlew and Common Snipe were present along with Grey Heron and Little Egret.  Highlights however were the Water Rail and Kingfisher.  Both showing well in good light.  Now, I get a Kingfisher in perfect light and it is too far away.  Never mind it was still a nice sighting as it hovered over the reeds in front of us and landed on the post for a few minutes before flying off down the channel.  Wigeon, Teal, a number of Little Grebes and Lesser Black Backed Gull were around the pond apparently undisturbed by the flocks of sheep down for a drink.  The Lapwings put on a fine show when they lifted for no apparent reason.

Shore Lark

Distant Kingfisher

As we moved onto Druridge Pools a Kestrel was mobbed by corvids.  Speckled Wood Butterflies and dragonflies were in the air.  On the path to the hide there were more Goldcrest, a lone male Blackcap and flocks of Goldfinch.  The Cormorants, Grey Herons and Little Egret gave me some opportunity for photography.  The latter moved slowly along to the front of the hide but was disturbed by a Grey Heron just as I was about to take my image of the year! :-)  Then we were off and heading for home, but not before watching the male Stonechat

Grey Heron

Little Egret


Grey Heron

1 comment:

  1. Great to get the Shore Lark! (The distant Kingfisher alone would have made my day admittedly, lol).