31 March, 2023

Signs Of Spring? Pt.2, Up There

I'm suffering a serious inability to get out of bed, which I blame entirely on the new pills.

That's my excuse for not being out at a decent hour on Sunday and so not doing a proper walk up on t'Moor.

[Yes, in that forecast, with those big showers muntering about.   What?]

I did get up there [I'd prepped rations. Had to get outside!] and settled for lunch and a good skywatch at Great Mis Tor.  
You know, this one;

The Great Mis Tor,
looking unaccustomarily cheery[!]

Golden Plover

Looking very summery, but flocks flying about like it's still winter..?

Another one.
Count the Goldies!

That was the largest single flock, but not the largest flock in the sky, which was a group of [presumably migrating] Skylark; 55 of them! Add to that the 18 singing birds I encountered [air was full of them, all the way up and around the Tor, wonderful, just wonderful! :D ] and you get a good total.
At least 12 Mipits were consigned to a distant third in the Most Numerous Species list [and you don't get that often, outside hard winter].

Let's have some scenery,

Looking SW

Middle & Great Staple Tors, Roos Tor, and behind Cox Tor, hide Pork Pie Hill [aka Barn Hill and various other names], home of the first and last car park on the Tavvy road and at that time the Teacher, who'd just Life'd a Little Bunting over the river, and then upped that with a flyover Red Kite [which I missed... :( ] not long before I took this.
[[Pesky Dark Power.....]]

Hit the zoom button, boy,

Mt. Edgcombe,
The Eddystone,
A weird ship with a tall thing!?!
[yes, that's part of the ship]

Judging by relative distances, a VERY tall thing indeed....

A bit less zoom;
Tamar and Tavy crossings

Though there were far too many mundanes up there [had they not seen the forecast?? The big black clouds??... Tut. Tut I tell you!] the Skylarks were lovely.

I will do some proper walking. I will.

And maybe see a few birds...??

Be Seeing You...

29 March, 2023

Signs Of Spring? Pt.1, Down Here

Some signs, mayhaps...

Shining Cranesbill

Full breeding plumage

Well this pic's arse...


Fall of Chiffs and at least one Willow Warbler* at the Nose, but not exactly vast numbers.

Still haven't seen a hirundine.

Any hirundine.

[Three swifties, though... What a year?!?!!]

Be Seeing You...

[[* But which one is in the photo??? ]]

27 March, 2023

Ok, So I Cracked...

After spending nearly a week determinedly not tarting off after other Alpine Swifties and instead devoting non-work time to looking for one [just one] on Patch.

Yeah, so cut to Teignmouth, after a cold hour's roadside waiting on saturday afternoon,

Yeah, the light*
was crap



Checking out the night's

And look at that tail!

Under the louver;

The Swiftie has landed!

Looking right

Ok, slightly easier one;


Good to see a fair few faces at the twitch, which had been looking bleak until a mad brave soul - still looking up despite everything - went An Alpine! I've got Two! No, Threeeeee!!


Other posting of the weekend's misadventures - including even worse pictures - will be forthcoming.

Be Seeing You...

[[* It was definitely the light. Definitely. ]]

24 March, 2023

Patched Up Post

A picture pai- oh, I've done that one, have't I?


Not on Patch, I should hasten to note. Mothers' Day Traditional Nicpic was held at Dawlish Warren, this pretty boy was on the Main Pond.

At least 4 GCG offshore plus a seaduck [probably a scoter]. I should point out that a) I was Being Good and only toting bins, b) the tide was waaaaay out, and c) there were mundanes everywhere...

Here's a flyover,


As usual, camera took too long to decide to work, so no definitive yes/no on sinensis... Hmmm.
Also a bit late on this Joy;

Harder to mess up, hit the macro function!

Sand Hopper!

And at range but easier [due to the snoring.!],

Grey Seal

Tie between Ma and the pogs as to who had most fun. :D
About the Patch,



And finally..

Three-cornered garlic,
Lungwort, and Moss*!

Cue, Dr. Bellamy;
"Here we are, in this lush temperate rainforest, where an abundance of verdant vegetation springs from every crevice and clings onto the rough surfaces of these dark, brooding, and ancient igneous rocks"



Be Seeing You...

[[* That's the best you're getting]]

Cute Doggies On A Beach

::Mutter mutter this'll break 10k views today.... Mutter mutter::

I shouldn't even have joked about it....

[They are]

No, you're only having one.

Can I get back to birds now?

[If I ever see {and identifiably photo...} and good ones]

Oh, stop pouting.
Ok, fine, one more;
Dog, Check.
Beach, Check.
But that's it.
No more pogs.

Be Seeing You...

21 March, 2023

Just A Quickie Post

Whilst looking [in vain, obviously] for a Patch Alpine Swiftie of my very own [worth a try...] I did come across this rather fetching couple,

Stock Doves

Awww, and other comments.

More and longer postage will come along at some point, but expect nothing fancy this week [sorry to spoil*]. [[Unless you'd like pictures of cute doggies on a bea-  ....That's a silly question, isn't it?]]

I shall,

Be Seeing You...

[[* Don't you dare..... ]]

17 March, 2023

A Picture Paints Four Words

I'm sure you know what they are;


Fresh in, late afternoon [none present earlier]

Also, it was bogof day,


Rather mobile about the Quarry area, there could have been more, but definitely two, as you can see


Also this afternoon,

Mr Blackstart


Grey Seal,
Lead Stone!

Not seen one on there before.

It had looked horribly quiet, with previous days' Wheatears having moved on at first light and nothing offshore.
An hour from Glonk Corner gave... Not much, but then just as I was about to pack up, a few things moved, and best of all [and of course after the scope was away and the camera was in pocket], a funny brown thing with a long neck came wizzing by... Huh? Er...  Looks like a duck, brown with a long ne- Ohhhh, it's a Pintail!

[Not a Patch Tick, but nice to see here :) ]

I will get to a few [awful] numbers at some point. Honest.

Anyways, Spring!
[And second earliest date since I started recording them]

Be Seeing You...

15 March, 2023

This Post Contains Gratuitous Violence

Also gratuitous Violets, which we're starting with,

Yeah, yeah...

Sweet Violet, quite a nice streaked white form.

Gratuitous violence against nature, by way of Ivy destruction. Not new, but only just noticed by me this weekend...

vandal scum...


Violence on the eyes;


Eiders by the Ore Stone [1w m on left, f on right] [[plus some Guillemots]], still present, still not behaving and coming close for a nice picture.

Slightly better-behaved were a small pod of Harbour Porpoise, close in off Black Head;

I hit one!

That taken from the actual old Coast path at Brandy Bend, after being eluded again by a possible tit [and more?] band.

Let's have a slightly easier one than the last post [ahem...];

Spot the birdie!

This on the debris from more gratuitous violence against nature, with the 'trust''s biocidal mania at the Nose having destroyed the Firecrest Bushes, these are bits thereof.
I'm not happy. More mud and enriched grassland turning to Bracken, I have no doubt.


Still Waiting For Wheatears....

Be Seeing You...

14 March, 2023

It's Been A While

...Since I posted a truly awful photo.
So here's a sequence!

Behold, something going N past the Nose yesterday afternoon, seconds before 4 of the clock;

Pic 1
[on the right]

Pic 2
[higher up, in the middle]

Pic 3

Zoom out a bit [and go back in time],

Pic 0
[it's in there but I can't see it]

If any of you can 
a) even see it
b) work out what it is and so
c) why I'm posting this nonsense*

I will be truly impressed.

One day, folks. One day.

In other passage; 65 Kittiwake, 11 Gannet, 6 Razorbill, 5 Fulmar, and 2 Common Gull passed South in an hour from Glonk Corner.

Because the weather was so funky and I just had to.
The two Eider remain onsite, they having been lurking on the offshore side of the Lead Stone decided to swim back out towards the Ore Stone just a touch too early to avoid me seeing them. More interesting, perhaps, was the surprise Redwing [surprise on both sides] which was foraging on the First Slope, just below where the Firecrest Bushes used to be, as I dragged myself back up.

Better posting will be along directly.

Be Seeing You...

[[* 'Because you are insane' or similar, is not a valid answer. {Too obvious!} ]]

09 March, 2023

Patch Nonsense Post

Hitting the Patch when not doing anything else...

Still loving Crocii

Don't forget to look up now and again, though.

Might miss something like this;

Displaying Sprawk
[note fluffed-out undertail coverts]

'Somewhere in Patch'


Also somewhere on Patch, it is, er, 'good'[??] to note that Peg food populations remain healthy [er, I think...]


Calling them winged rats
is insulting to all rodents,

Sightings of note also included a Collared Dove [still quite scarce about Patch], and a small grebe that looked very Slavonian.

Yes, really.

The grebe was off Withy Point on Friday; it looked very interesting and that was before it wingflapped and showed off white in the shoulder [thus not a BNG]. It was also very slippery and while I picked it up repeatedly with bins I just couldn't get my scope on it... [Poor, very poor] As there's a definite RNG in the area [DW is right over there ::points::], I can't be sure it wasn't that [unless someone had the RNG @ DW, all Friday PM?].
I had 2 GCGs and 2 RTDs from the Nose the next day, right after the Teacher had seen a grebe sp. that was very likely my Mystery Bird [in the same area, also very elusive]. I'd gone scurrying over - defying my head - on his news, hoping combining the powers of Big Scope and The Artefact ::Ominous Chanting:: would give us something definitive.... but no further sign of it.
Double bugger.

Anyways, let us put some more pretty things up, all about Patch in last week;


Devon. Natch.

More like it


Spotted birdie

Didn't see that coming? The owl didn't see me, either. :)

[I hear Tawny Owls all the time - weather allowing - but actually seeing them is a little trickier*...]


The wallflower,
Ivy-leaved Toadflax

More like it.

Anyways, I shall, as per usual [at some point]

Be Seeing You...

[[* Location withheld due to Data Protection Legislation.]]

07 March, 2023

So I Was Just Passing By And...

..As it was lunch time I figured I'd have a go for the Red-necked Grebe that's been tarting about off Dawlish Warren.

As I was there.

You know, just passing by.

Anyways, with no knowledge of whether it was even there, I set up at Lifeguards and started scanning whilst sipping free coffee and munching a nice porkus pieus [oh, it's a hard life, it really is...]

Grebes, grebes, everywhere but not a RNG to see...

GCG in s/pl

There was at least one close one.

Birds mostly well out to 'aaaargh that's a dot' range, but this is what Big Scopes are for, and nothing in line of sight escapes 75x   :)

The RNG was lurking off the mouth of the Exe. Waaaay off.

10+ GCG, 7 C Scoter, and lots of Shag and Cormorant were closer.

Time for a wee yomp....

Groyne 16 [from the beach, not the dunes! I'm good] and the RNG was right out there.

Out where?

Out there!

Beyond the sand banks

No, really.

Zoom in [when camera decided to behave a bit and the grebe was actually in view and on the surface....]

Red-necked Grebe
[yes, it is.]

Much much better through the scope, but a higher state of tide, earlier in the day, may be required if you want a decent photo..?

Also in view, 17+ GCG, 2 Eider, 1 RTD, 4 Teal [?] and a Med Gull [nothing close, oh no]

I did get a nice fly-by;


Some of 45 which had been feeding on weed by Langstone Rock.

Then I turned attention to the fresher side of the spit,

Those Spoonbills again!

Hiding under the Cockwood bridge, the rascals.

Still a few waders about The Bight, including Greenshank, Redshank, Dunlin, Sanderling, Turnstone, Barwit, Curlew, Grey Plover, Ringed Plover, Oystercatcher...

Wandering back the inland way, groups of Linnet [22+] and Greenfinch [11] plus a lone regular-flavour Chiffchaff, with a Kestrel overhead, were nice if not spectacular.

For once, no trespassing dog walkers, kitesurfers, paddleboarders, or random mundanes..!

[It was a bit nippy, mind]

Anyways, that's it.

Be Seeing You...