The Dark Room

Saturday 29 January 2011

White Fronted geese are back

At the Ingrebourne valley this morning was one of the best days on the patch, ok it was cold and the light was bad for photography but the quality of birds was excellent and this why I like patch birding. Four White Fronted Geese returned for their fourth year and I also saw 2 Bittern, Kingfisher, 2 Bullfinch and Little Owl.

Wednesday 26 January 2011

American Wigeon

On Sunday seeing the American Wigeon in Norfolk got me thinking how long ago it was since the last one I saw and it was back in 2007 at Barlycroft GP with Paul, and I had forgot how smart they look. Although this is a record shot through the scope the picture does not do it justice ,so I apologise .

Monday 24 January 2011

A day's birding in Norfolk

On Sunday I spent the day birding in Norfolk with Dick and although it was cold and grey skies it was fantastic. We started at Thornham for the Northern Harrier which showed well with the scope and birded the way back along the coast, where we also saw American Wigeon, Marsh Harrier ,Hen Harrier,Peregrine,Pink Feet and White fronts plus the birds below.

A Sanderling at a very cloudy Titchwell

Some of the 30+ Snow Bunting at Salthouse

Tuesday 18 January 2011


After driving one hour to work, I had to turn back as one of the roads was flooded to a height of four foot and it only took me 2 hours to get back as the A127 was closed, but I was back on the patch and forgot all about it.With clear skies I thought I would get a Buzzard but no luck today, I did get the Little Owl,Redpoll,RN Parakeet,5 Cetti's Warbler and a Sparrowhawk.The Ingrebourne Valley river has burst it's banks as well.

Little Owl

Little Owl

No sign of the Waxwings today but the Mistle Thrush was still in its favourite tree

One of the Waxwings from Sunday morning

Sunday 16 January 2011

Waxwings cost less at sainsbury's

A Sunday morning at Sainsbury's is not the normal place I would go at the weekend but I wanted to see if the Waxwings were still there from yesterday. There were 4 waxwing when I arrived at 9.00am and by the time I left at 10.00am there were 25. As like Saturday the shoppers wanted to know what the strange birds are and seemed very interested .

Saturday 15 January 2011

Harrier and Waxwings

Started at the Ingrebourne Valley and had a good year tick with a Marsh Harrier over, but the pull of the Slaty -backed gull got to much, so went to see if it was still there with the other 700 birders but no luck. Myself and Martin Redfern done a quick circuit to see if we could locate the gull some where else after looking for it on the tip for 2 hrs but no luck. Then got home and Dave the beard had found 32 Waxwing in sainsbury carpark in Hornchurch, so I went back out again.

A first winter Waxwing

Some of the crowd looking for the slaty- backed gull at Rainham Marshes

The Mistle Thrush was not to pleased with the Waxwings having all its berries.

Saturday 8 January 2011

Year Patch Listing

Once again I am doing a patch year list and added a couple more this afternoon bringing my total so far to 61 and a very smart Little Owl was the today's highlight.Last weekend I met up with Dave Morrison for a early start and we had 3 Tawny Owl and 2 Bittern being the best birds of the morning.

Little Owl

Saturday 1 January 2011

New Year Day

Having had a late night and one or two many drinks on New Years Eve I wanted to go for a walk and took the family to Southend on Sea to get some fresh air. So today got me thinking about the patch and all the waders I saw today a Turnstone is the only one still missing from my patch list. Will 2011 be the year, we will have to wait and see?