Dusky Warbler, but I have to point out straight away that this is not my picture. Dave had talked me into going to Chichester Gravel pits to look for the Dusky Warbler that had been reported there. I was not too keen. From past experience I knew how hard it can be to nail these small fast moving warblers. They like to stay in cover, the lighting was going to be poor, and I also have difficulty in picking up their calls. There is nothing worse than getting fleeting glimpses of a bird, thinking that it is the one you are looking for, but ending up walking away without being one hundred percent confident.
It looked as though it would go that way today. I had a four or five sightings of the bird moving through the bushes but all added together they probably came to no more than ten to fifteen seconds and it was moving all the time. I could see a white stripe over its eye but that alone was not enough to confirm the sighting. There were experts there that were confident that the call was that of a Dusky but again that is not really satisfactory.
Fortunately Dave managed to get a few shots of it. He was the only photographer there that did, but it was enough for all of us to go home confident that we had seen a Dusky Warbler. It's just a pity that they weren't my pictures. See Dave's Blog for more images.
|Dusky Warbler - Dave Potter|
I have had a few good days birding already this year but with mostly dull overcast days I don't have many pictures to show for it. We were out New Years day and down at Gosport to see Waldo the Ring-billed Gull. He is now in his thirteenth winter on the boating lake in Walpole Park. We logged another forty or so birds that day but with poor lighting and no picture opportunities we headed for home early.
|Waldo - Ring-billed Gull|
Yesterday was going to be my big birding day and a chance to get a few year ticks under my belt. It started well when I left home just before eight and ended prematurely a few minutes later when I pulled up with a rear offside puncture. By the time I had the wheel changed, had cleaned up, and then visited the garage for a new tyre, it was about eleven o'clock.
I moped around the house for an hour before deciding that I really needed to go out. I was glad I did. I headed over to Horse Eye Level where I managed to pick up five Short-eared Owls, Richard's Pipit, Hen Harrier, and Marsh Harrier. Picture opportunities were again limited by the light with the Short-eared Owl below, just about making the grade for the blog.
On the way home I stopped off at Jevington for the Rough-legged Buzzard and at Butchers Hole car park in Friston Forest for the Bramblings. The Chaffinch Flock here was huge and I have never seen so many Brambling in one place. I could have watched them for hours if it had not been for one of those nice dog walkers with six dogs running loose that scattered the lot.
So a good start to the year even if I don't have many pictures to show for it.