The Dark Room

Sunday 26 February 2012

Stop Adder Time

The weather was fantastic today at the Ingrebourne Valley with glorious sunshine, it's nice to go birding without the layers of clothing which I've had to wear lately. So I wasn't surprised to find a Adder out catching the rays to, in there usual spot. That's the first one of the year for me. I checked another area of the site for more Adders but could not find anymore, but did have 9 Crossbill go over calling whilst there. That's my only second record of Crossbill here, the other record was just a single bird a couple of years ago. Also seen were Little Egret, 9 Wigeon, Bullfinch and 3 Snipe.

Wednesday 22 February 2012

Waders at Salthouse

When and if there is a Wader on my local patch the Ingrebourne Valley they normally get found on the Reservoir or at the viewing area which is hard getting any sort of quailty photograph of any Wader because of the distance. So when out and about I like to get some close ups if I can, as they are my favourite groups of birds. Here are some from Saturday's outing....




Monday 20 February 2012

Snow Buntings at Salthouse

If you can imagine me on the beach at Salthouse Norfolk happily taking photo's of a close up Knot, and suddenly the flock of Snow Buntings decided to drop down on the deck. Giving me a chance to take some images of them and only a few metres away and some of the best views I've had.

Sunday 19 February 2012

Common Yellowthroat ( easy on a Sunday morning)

With the all weekend pass given by my wife, I joined Bradders Jnr and Snr and Blow Monkey to go and see the very smart and bright Common Yellowthroat in Gwent. It showed immediately as we walked up the hill in the hedgerow but very low down. We watched it for about an hour and a half, with me going oooohh and aaarrrhh as it got closer to the crowd of about 150 people. The record shots below don't do it any justice. Anyway as most birders did, we went along to see Dipper, Lesser Scaup, Red Kite but dipped the Bonaparte's Gull. A Great day out, and some great birds too....

The Lesser Scaup at Cosmeston lakes (Penarth)

A very showy Whooper Swan

Saturday 18 February 2012

Coues's Redpoll in Kelling

After years of dipping Arctic Redpoll. Martin Redfern and I finally catch up with the bird at Kelling in Norfolk this morning. Where it showed along side Mealy and Lesser Redpolls. It was great to see them all feed together and learn more about Redpoll ID. Below are some record shots of it.

Bezzy mate Martin Redfern happy ticking the Arctic Redpoll

Sunday 12 February 2012


I spent a couple of hours on Saturday and Sunday on the patch this weekend and really had some superb local birding. A Jack Snipe on both days, and is a patch tick for me. I am still kicking myself that I did not get a picture of it, as it was in the stream behind the play ground area. It was only feet away but didn't see it, till I nearly stepped on it. The same happened on Saturday but his time flushed from Ingrebourne Hill. Also this weekend I had my 2rd Woodcock of the year flushed from the small paddock. The Little Owl has returned too. The Kingfisher and Grey Wagtail were feeding in the same stream were it was free from ice. Unlike most of the small stream had iced over. A Buzzard was seen on both days too. I Still can't get over the Jack Snipe, nearly 18 years on the patch with out seeing one Jack Snipe. Then two come along at once.......

Female Grey Wagtail

Might do a bit more work in getting a better photo of this male Kingfisher in the future, like a temporary hide?

Glad to to see this Little Owl in its favourite tree again after weeks of not seeing a single one in the valley.

Thursday 9 February 2012

What's on your feeder?

As the cold weather seems like its here for a while and with night time temperatures are below minus, birds are moving around bit. So this evening and like many, I made sure our garden feeders and bird table were full. Hopefully, with this cold movment I might get a garden tick Brambling or Snipe over would be nice?


Sunday 5 February 2012

Elvedon Forest

Just got back from a short break at Centre Parks in Elvedon Forest Suffolk with the family. Its one of our favourite places to go for a short break. Most of our time was spent playing Badminton, Table Tennis and swimming, so there was'nt that much time to go birding. So I made the most of the little time I had, by sitting down in the hide watching all the birds come down to a feeding station. Superb....



Marsh Tit