Monday, 25 September 2023

Local Stuff


Good numbers of Auks close in to the shore still.


Red-Throated Diver

Numbers of these building along the North East coast.

Souter Lighthouse seems to attract hundreds of snails. No Song Thrushes around to enjoy the feast.


So far weather has not been too good along the East coast but hopefully in a couple of weeks we'll get a few Goldcrests and Redwing. Amazing numbers of American Birds however have been blown across the Atlantic by a series of storms. Not sure whether that is good to see though. I would think for every one seen in Britain a large numbers on the same path ditch into the sea. Then the ones which do make it will probably not make it back and so are doomed to an unproductive few years.


Monday, 11 September 2023

Mo Bo

Mo Farah

Great North Run 10/09/2023

(Fourth Place)

Just checking to see if the 'chippy' is open!

A frustrating drive to Teesmouth was rewarded with some good views of the Brown Booby. It did a tour of the Buoys but never came really close while I was there.

After a good 3 hours watching I headed to Saltholme and managed to see the Buff-breasted Sandpiper.

Peres Jepchirchir

GNR Womens winner

2nd Place

Tamirat Tola

GNR Mens Winner


Monday, 4 September 2023


Grey Heron

On top of the sea stack at Souter Point.

Grey Squirrel

Stealing the Greenfinch berries?


Nice selection of birds at Whitburn CP yesterday. Lesser Whitethroats, Common Whitethroats, Blackcaps and Chiffchaffs. Only the Dunnock showed long enough for a photo.

I don't see many birds on the Nature Reserve Pool, Whitburn so nice to see this young Moorhen.

Turnstone and Dunlin


Still a few of these turning up on the clifftops.

Big numbers odfwaders and gulls on Whitburn Beach.


Thursday, 24 August 2023


Autumn Gentian


This is the normal colour. The photos I've posted in the past have been the white variant found at East Chevington.

Common Darters

Lots of these emerging in the last week.


Great views of Guillemots as they feed inshore on the hundreds of 'sprats'.


A lovely day at Teesside this week. Waders were the stars including 500+ Ringed Plover, Flocks of Avocet,  single Wood Sandpiper and Great White Egret were just a few of the 20 or more wader species seen.

Pied Flycatcher

A sniff of an Easterly and there is a sudden increase in birders along the coast. Sea-watching Sites become very busy and all the coastal shrubs are checked. I was lucky enough to come across this Pied Flycatcher. The following day I checked the Pier End car park and heard an unusual call as soon as I parked the car. I thought it was a warbler call and it was very loud. As I approached the source of the call there was no movement. Then all of a sudden several birds moved including the Blue Tit that was making the sound. One bird took my interest as it flew strongly away. It was a Wryneck!

I guess the Blue Tit had been scolding it.

Sadly it flew over a fence and in to a nettle patch never to be seen again.


Try and find this one in your field guide.

This wren was sun-bathing in the garden at Salthome RSPB.

Interesting birds have been still turning up despite the winds coming from the West. Greenish Warbler at Cresswell, Pied and Spotted Flycatchers along the coast, Whinchats and Wheatears.


Friday, 11 August 2023


Dark-red Helleborine

A trip to the Durham Quarry well known for its Helleborines. Just in time to catch the last of flowers.

Emerald Damselfly

Whitburn Steeel and Sandhaven Beach getting a few morning visits by me recently.

Little Gull

Adult. Difficult to get close without disturbing the birds.

Little Gulls


No chance of disturbing these they were closer to North Shields than South S.. Love this plumage though.

Song Thrush 

All those thinking about hedge cutting should be aware that some birds are still feeding young. Others are well on their way to migrating. Twenty Swifts feeding above my flat a few mornings ago. Now they've gone.

The Stonechats are independent now and looking magnificent.



Waders on the move. Golden Plover, Curlew, Ringed Plover, Oystercatcher, Sanderling, Knot, Turnstone and a few Dunlin along the coast. Green and Wood sands a little way inland

Whinchat and Cuckoo at Saltholme this week but this morning, a check along the Leas, was unsuccessful. Trow Quarry also failed to produce a Spotted Flycatcher.

For those of you missing all the insect photos (Well I think there maybe one?) A bumper post will be coming soon, so be warned.


Saturday, 29 July 2023


At last you cry..

Well isn't it strange. I post other wildlife photos and they rarely get a glance. I didn't post the location of this bird because the 'Toggers' would have chased it for the next few days. It is not as if they couldn't find their own and enjoy the experience even more because of their success.

Grey Heron

Wannabe Woodpecker

Meadow Pipit

Dismissed as a LBJ by some. They are much more than that.


Can't ID them all, even birds. This came over the sea  and headed West towards the Academy Pools area. It showed no detail to safely ID.

Sandwich Terns

Terns and Black-headed Gulls are having a terrible time at the moment due to Avian Influenza. Hopefully their numbers will recover in the next few years. I remember the Oil Spillages of the 70s and how quickly seabirds recovered let us hope it is the same after this Flu outbreak.

Tricky time of year if you're new to birding. Immature birds can be quite different from adults. Starlings usually moult quickly to adult plumage, This bird shows the first spotted breast feathers and adult flight feathers.

Another pitfall for beginners is the worn adults. After the frenzied food gathering to feed their broods, many birds don't resemble those showy birds marking territories and attracting a mate in spring. Whitethroats and Chiffchaffs can look awful at this time of year.

Fortunately Swallows look great all the time.

Young Wheatears have been appearing on the coast.


Waders are passing through in increasing numbers. 150 Sanderlings at East Chevington beach, 4-500 Golden Plover Whitburn Steel. Wood, Green and Wood Sandpipers all putting in an appearance. Ruff and Greenshank also appearing.

Chaffinch and Wren