Thursday, 30 January 2020


Bar-tailed Godwit

January is usually my favourite month for wandering around the county. Visits to Chevington may drop to only three a week (aaagh).


In the last week or so I have made visits to: Newbiggin, Wallington, Hartburn, Boulmer, Harwood Forest, Longhoughton, Howick Hall and Amble.

Water Pipit


You'll have to zoom in to get the details; white outer tail, rich brown rump, bold supercillium and almost unstreaked lower flanks. A very easy bird to spot in flight but not approachable. On the same day up to 24 Rock Pipits and at least one Scandi (litorallis) bird.


Common Crane (adult)

Seemingly present since well before the New Year.

Goosander (female)

Grey Wagtail
(Adult male winter plumage)

Hazel Flowers
Male above, Female below.

Black Redstart

Another long stayer and faithful to a short stretch of beach/cliff.

Hooded Crow

Betula utilis

Pink-footed Geese

3000+ in the Druridge area.

Thursday, 23 January 2020

January in Flower

Christmas Rose

Initially I identified this as Green Hellebore but thanks to PH's wife my ID was corrected. I did guess it might be a cultivated form.

All these flowering plants were in the Marine Park, South Shields.

Fly Sp?

A warm (12oC) brought out lots of insects and the birds were in full song. Unfortunately they might be in for a shock if the weather turns colder.

Winter Aconite

Winter Heliotrope

Mahonia sp?

Viburnum Sp?

Silk Tassel Bush?

Greater Periwinkle


As you can see I'm not too good with garden plants. I must get myself a 'field' guide.

Friday, 17 January 2020

North and South

Little Egret
Saltmarsh south of the River Aln.
(Buston Links)

Feathers in lovely breeding condition if a tad early?


Ashington Community Woodland


East Chevington Feeders

The Pheasant was so bright on a relatively dull day. The Water Rail did visit a couple of times but was disturbed by the slightest movement in the hide.

Chaffinch (male)


A visit South of the Tyne and I came across this flock of 34 Waxwings.

Unfortunately they were not allowed to feed on the berry laden tree because it was being protected by the Mistle Thrush below. Managed also to see the 7 Snow Buntings flying over the beach as I headed for a coffee on the coast.

Heading home from South Shields a brief detour to Northumberland Park and the NS Fish Quay.

Eider (drake)

Herring Gull
(No white-wingers though)

Today it was over to Fontburn Reservoir.

Very little on the birding front but the peaty water in the reservoir made for some nice reflections.