Birding round Durham & Sunderland 2012

Birdwatching in & around Houghton-le-Spring, Sunderland, County Durham.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Must be Spring if Skylarks sing

Dont be so bloody stupid man ! of course its not Spring - its New Year !

A flat calm, sunny, bright mild day working at Durham City.

Those in song in a lovely well wooded garden included :-

First of the year records of singing Nuthatch, Stock Dove & a Skylark vocal over territory for 15 mins ( my earliest record )

As well as further wide range of garden residents, i was treat to a pair of Brambling visiting, perching in a delightful Prunus Kanzan on & off all day.

I managed to get away in time to catch a local pair of Little Owls getting jiggy ! (record shots on owl blog) with an addition of Red leg for the Patch year list too.

another songster on Friday was Corn Bunting - several tuning up, but one in good voice while a flock of 32 or more fed not far off - & a 3 figure flock of Tree Spugs ! a superb change of fortunes for some of our local birds !

it seems there must be something in the air.... but not Spring - thats a long way off yet...... isnt it ?


The weekend included a family visit to Hamsterley with another mega rare (LOL) Woodcock whilst den-building with the kids, a couple of roadside Brambling at Bedburn along with Jay, Crossbill & Treecreeper.

A Sunday morning brisk walk round Hawthorn with Snowdrops coming out

We were spellbound as we crouched to watch a male Great Spotted hacking a Sycamore stem to bits - only to see a male Green Woodpecker flick up from the same tree when Jack moved for a better view -
The Yaffle relanded straight away allowing a good view - we could hear him calling away in the sun for the next 30 mins.

Loads of Marsh Tits were added as a yeartick, as were Eider & RTDiver on the sea.
Hawthorn Hive - One of Durhams Black Beaches, which the North Sea is steadily cleaning up.
Graffcally illustrated here- clean cobbles with pit spoil 'ahind'.

We stooped to look at a Tawny pellet in the wood & then looked up to see him sitting overhead - the bairn reckons he clocked it first..... which he probably did ! ( and then went on to casually point out a likely nest cavity ! )
Thats my boy :-)

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