Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Garden tick

So, the weather over the Christmas period has greatly reduced the amount and variety of bird species that have been around, and my chances of seeing them. However, this morning I was casually sitting in my living room when I spotted a male blackcap on the bush next to our birdtable. This is the first time I can recall having one in the garden so it was very exciting. Sadly its visit was only brief and the view I got was not great. After I had got the camera the bird was gone, so sadly no photos of this... historic record!

Tuesday, 24 December 2013


So Tuesday morning and i'm just about getting back to normal life. This morning I spotted a large, maybe around 100 fieldfares in the field behind the house. Its probably the largest gathering of these birds the field has seen, though there seem to be larger gatherings every winter. There were some smashing views of them as the foraged around the short stubby turf.

Sunday, 22 December 2013


So I have only been back 2 days and already there seems to be plenty of wildlife around, not least hundreds of thrushes that have been around my brothers church in Pellon. Whilst waiting for him to come out of church I was able to watch fieldfares and redwings flying between trees and identify them too, even though they were flying. Its nice to be home...

Friday, 20 December 2013

Uni Week 13

So the last week before Christmas. Its weird to think I have only known these people for 13 weeks and yet here we are struggling to leave each other for Christmas. Somehow, my lectures managed to continue right until Friday, while many other people just finished their lectures on Tuesday, Wednesday and then went home. This left the accommodation in a state of serene quiet state, as well as the main campus. Somehow, everyone else quiet week turned into a pretty hectic week for me, with 4 assignments as well as continuing lectures leaving me with a constant stream of work that kept me busy.

Going home day. Prior to my leaving I happened to look out of my window and spotted a jay flying into the tree's on the other side of the road.
  The train journey meant guaranteed fun, and so it proved as there was a signal failure at Sheffield station which meant a chronic backlog of delays. Once it got going though I was able to enjoy watching numerous winter thrushes from the train window, and when we passed a fishing lake I was able to spot some tufted ducks on the lake

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Uni Week 11

All the talk these days seems to be about Christmas and our opinions on it, a sign that the first semester is slowing down and that soon we will all be going home.

Its hard to believe but today I spotted a  Butterfly behind the school, my memory fails me as to which species it was, though more than likely small tortoiseshell. The weather was nice enough though it was bitterly cold. This is without doubt the latest I can ever recall seeing a butterfly

So wandering back from corp at 2.00 as standard for a Thursday morning, also standard is hearing midnight the robin singing behind the union. I still have not seen midnight, which is a bit of a disappointment since I have made him into a mini celeb around these parts but one can understand if he wants to stay out of the limelight

Wandering down to the uni at 9.00 for lectures the lad I was with suddenly said 'Oh look, that's a nice bird'. I only spotted said bird when it came and landed on a pillar a matter of meters away. It was a Jay, and one of the finest views I can ever recall getting of one. It was much bolder than  any others I have encountered, sitting on the pillar next to a steady stream of students. It flew of after a few seconds, but flew up the road alongside the students, not away from them

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Uni Week 10

Its been a pretty crazy week, just not in terms of wildlife sadly. After the CU weekend away which left me deprived of sleep, I then had a gig in London on the Tuesday night, but had to get back overnight for compulsory labs. I walked through the door at 6.30 in the morning, so that did not help my lack of sleep.

Prior to my gig I spotted a flock of long-tailed tits while walking down to the uni today. They were quite high up in the trees but it was still nice to see

I say I got back in the room at 6.30, I arrived at Meadowhall at 5.00 and was surprised to hear many birds calling despite it being still rather dark, and well out of season. I could hear blackbird alarm calls as well as various robins singing, though I only saw blackbirds on the walk back from the uni at around 6.15, though it was a very good view.