Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Winter Thrushes and the Brents

Just a few pics from my latest potter around the golf course car park and then out on a short drive around the country lanes to look for more winter visitors.

I have looked long and hard all winter for the 'Winter Thrushes'.  These are Fieldfare and Redwings that usually visit us in their thousands at winter, time before heading north again to breed in the spring.  Monday was my first sight of a medium sized flock (approx. 30) of the season.

They are both related to our own Thrushes (Song, Mistle and Blackbird), with the Fieldfare comparing well with the Mistle Thrush in size a habit; both feeding on the grass in numbers and flying with a laboured bounding flight, often accompanied by a rattling call.
Note the grey shawl effect on the head and shoulders.
And there's the Redwing, with a more slight build, and a distinct red mark under the wing and a vibrant bright yellow eye stripe.  The picture below is rubbish (on the other side of the field, as usual!), but it shows what I mean, just.

The Redwing is at the top of the picture.
So, the next time you see a flock of birds walking around a field - usually all facing in the same direction - take a closer look as they could well be Fieldfare and Redwing.

Whilst on the road, I popped over to the golf course car park for a quick look at the Brent Geese.  These photos illustrate their habits well: waling along the shore edge, feeding in the rockpools down by the golf course.  Very easy to see and photograph.

Very close to the shore.

Nibbling at the edges of the rockpool.
And enjoying a drink.

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