Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Going local

I thought we'd have some of the wild flowers that are growing here on our dog walking sessions.

One that is quite common in most places, to start with.

Germander Speedwell


A small wood that we sometimes walk through, Kents Hill Wood, has some lovely plants growing in there at the moment. The Ox-eye Daisies haven't begun to flower yet, but won't be very long.

Here's a nice carpet of another white flower ...........

Greater Stitchwort

and usually where that grows, you can find these ...........


Hidden amongst the trees, behind them, I was surprised to find a clump of Ramsons growing happily there.

The Lords and Ladies are all growing well now too.

I think my biggest surprise find though, was growing at the side of the road, opposite the Hilton Hotel.

Star of Bethlehem

Not fully in flower yet. Hopefully get another picture soon, although the mowers were in the area, so it may be lost.

Enjoy your day

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Sunny days in MK

The last few days here in Milton Keynes have been warm and sunny. Perfect for taking pictures on our morning dog walks.

Blossom tree opposite the Open University, Walton.

This little area has been a magnet for some of our spring migrants. Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Blackcap and Whitethroat.




Quite a few Linnets have been visible near the offices of the OU, in Kents Hill.

By the river, near the OU, a large tree has an interesting fungus growing on it.


The Blue Tits always seem to pose to perfection.

Blue Tit

Jays have been quite vocal at the moment, with lots of activity.


Some days we ventured over to Caldecotte Lake.

At the moment there are a lot of Swallows, Sand Martins and House Martins skimming over the water.

Sand Martin

House Martin

Not easy to get good flight shots.

One bird that did give me some 'good' pictures, was this chap.

Yellow Wagtail

And finally, a reminder that this is a busy time of the year for our birds.

A Robin, with some food for his young.

Enjoy your day

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Frampton Marsh

The last day of March, myself and Whisky headed off to the RSPB reserve at Frampton Marsh, in Lincolnshire; one of my favourites.
They've had some Whooper Swans roosting on the reserve for a while and we managed to find them in one of the adjacent fields.

Whooper Swan

Although I can't take Whisky onto the actual reserve, there are plenty of places around it where we can walk. The footpaths nearby, and along the sea bank, that overlooks the salt marsh on one side, and some of the reserve on the other side.
It was here we had some excellent views of the Brent Geese as they flew onto the reserve.

Some big flocks of Dunlin were very mobile too,


with the odd Ringed Plover amongst them.

Ringed Plover

A few Ruff were on the reserve .


lots of Shoveler,


and quite a few Avocets.


A fantastic visit where Whisky can have a good walk and sniff the new smells, and I can get to see plenty of birds. I even managed to find a very distant male Gargany; a first of the year for me, and a couple of other people I pointed it out to.

I was surprised to find an early flowering Dove's-foot Cranesbill too.

Dove's-foot Cranesbill

I'll finish with a picture of a Black-headed Gull flying over a Dunlin. Gives a good idea of the size of the Dunlin.

List of birds seen this visit.

Mute Swan 
Whooper Swan
Greylag Goose
Greater Canada Goose 
Brent Goose 
Common Shelduck 
Eurasian Wigeon 
Common Teal
Northern Shoveler 
Common Pochard 
Tufted Duck
Common Pheasant 
Little Grebe 
Great Crested Grebe 
Great Cormorant 
Little Egret 
Common Moorhen
Common Coot 
Eurasian Oystercatcher 
Pied Avocet 
Ringed Plover 
Northern Lapwing
Black-tailed Godwit 
Eurasian Curlew
Common Redshank 
Black-headed Gull 
Common Wood Pigeon 
Eurasian Collared Dove 
Sky Lark 
Meadow Pipit 
Pied Wagtail
British Dunnock 
British Robin 
Common Blackbird 
Common Chiffchaff 
British Blue Tit
British Jay 
Eurasian Magpie 
Carrion Crow
Common Starling 
British Chaffinch 
European Goldfinch 
Common Linnet
Reed Bunting 

Total  51 species

Enjoy your day

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Out and about

Managed to get out on a couple of days in-between the windy and rainy days, here in north Wales. A place I always like to visit when I'm here is Loggerheads Country Park.

Had a bit of storm damage.

Grey Wagtail at Loggerheads

On a visit to RSPB Conwy, I found a very obliging Meadow Pipit.

The usual gang of Wigeon, at this time of the year,

and plenty of displaying Red Breasted Mergansers.

An outing to Rhos-on-sea one morning in search of Purple Sandpipers didn't disappoint.

I only found two though, with a group of Turnstones.

A quick trip along the coast to Gronant sand dunes, and a nice find there.

Two Snow Buntings foraging amongst the dunes.

My first Chiffchaff of the year.

He was at RSPB Ynyis-hir.

The view from one of the hides that looks out to the Dyfi estuary.

I'll finish with the three new additions here, where I stay.

Along with the dogs, the chickens, the goose, the horses, and the sheep in the field, we now have some cows.

Have a good day.