10 December, 2010


Birding has been as brief [or fairly brief..] diversions from getting on with Important Stuff. The Patch has gotten a lot of short sharp bashing, and the Harbour Gulls in particular are in a state of shock at their daily grilling!

Needless to say I've found nothing spectacular.

A Mistle Thrush on the Berry Bushes yesterday was nice, and the Redwing and Starlings are sticking around, though Garden finch numbers have declined a touch. Herr Blackcap has been a bit more elusive, but is still present. There was also a fair candidate for a 1w Yellow-leg yesterday on the fancy crimbo pontoon [yes, the gulls have their own xmas deccas - it's very festive! {Even though the odd one tries to eat them...}] but not quite fair enough to make a song and dance about.

A surprise harbour bird on Wednesday was a Woodpig; especially as it was in the harbour... No idea how it got in the drink - they don't usually come closer than a high level fly-over. The pigeon's struggles to get to the ramp attracted attention from a couple of Crows and a 2w Geeb - it got pulled out by a Crow, which then jumped on it's back and tried its best to kill the poor Pig, while the other Crow cannily pulled out most of their victim's primaries. The Woodpig got away only by diving back into the water, and set off across the harbour, followed by the Geeb. With absolutely no chance of it flying any time soon, this was only going to end one way. I didn't stay to watch.

On a happier note, today it was Shopping Duty in Exeter, so it would have been positively rude not to call in at Alphington to pay my respects to actual perched Waxwings :D On arriving I found a small group of Devon Birders and a single 1w Waxwing, which eventually came down from it's tree and performed Advanced Berry Munching in the Rowan opposite. After some more sitting, another flew past, called once and the 1w upped and followed it out of sight up the road! A couple of minutes later a Waxwing appeared in a tree along the route they'd taken. As I was later than I'd intended and already leaving I didn't hang around to find out if it was the 1w or the other one [which looked to be an adult]. Just after I'd turned back left into Alphington Road, there was another Waxwing atop one of the trees on the left, so a total of definitely 2 and possibly 4. Not 6 but not bad at all. :)

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