Wildfowl & Wetland Trust London Wetland Centre Bird list for 22nd of May 2013.

I was hoping to have this list up a lot earlier today as it’s from 22nd of May however I was so busy doing the http://www.saverscene.com.au/finance/  (now closed as I move into gardening as a profession) updates for Australian best savings, credit cards and due to the fact many Aussies have to pay for bank accounts the best free bank account offers it took longer than expected as their saving interest rates are going the same way as the UK ones.

Now to birds thanks to the suggestion of Wes and the ease of getting to the WWT – Wildfowl & Wetland Trust in London Wetland Centre – see their twitter account here:  @WWTLondon I managed my best bird list for the UK this year, sadly I didn’t have my camera and my legs didn’t hold out for a long time, it was still great getting 28 different species at the WWT London and finishing it off with a kestrel at Luton airport for the longest list of the year so far!

2 new birds were on my list for life, and they were both cracking views, there was a pair of reed warblers nesting almost directly outside the Observatory which gave amazing views, they came right up to the reeds in front of the windows.  The other new bird was the Little Greeb I had amazing views of it feeding in clear water under the bridge just before you get to the Wildside hide,  Fantastic to see!

The bird list for May 22nd from WWT London Wetland Centre:

  1. Feral Pigeon
  2. Reed Warbler
  3. Mallard Duck – with young
  4. Moorhen
  5. Coot – with chicks
  6. Woodpigeon
  7. Starlings
  8. Carrion Crow
  9. Jackdaw
  10. Egyptian Geese
  11. Mute Swans
  12. Cormorant
  13. Grey Heron
  14. Blackbird
  15. Pied Wagtail
  16. Common Tern – new for the year
  17. Tufted Duck
  18. Lapwing
  19. Swallows
  20. Magpie
  21. Robin
  22. Black-headed Gull
  23. Great Tit
  24. Little Grebe
  25. Canada Geese – new for the year
  26. House Martin – new for the year
  27. Swift – new for the year
  28. Greylag Geese

1 more bird seen at Luton airport, hovering over the grass:

  1. Kestrel

Fantastic day of birding, can’t wait until I can walk for longer times and see more, I would often get 40 to 50 species at Musselburgh east of Edinburgh.

Whilst looking for bird sightings as I’d thought I’d seen something that I’m used to up in Scotland but wasn’t sure, I came across this Open University site: http://www.ispot.org.uk/ fantastic service and great for finding if a bird has been seen in the area!

 

Below are comments that got lost when the website went down. 

2 responses to Wildfowl & Wetland Trust London Wetland Centre Bird list for 22nd of May 2013.

  1. Wes Donze said on May 24, 2013

    Excellent list – glad you managed to get there and have some good sightings including the 2 new ones for you

    • KiwiGav said on May 25, 2013

      Wes, I really appreciate the suggestion, was great, wish I could have made it to a few more of the areas, next time! I’m sure my feet have to get better soon, looking at two more operations, hopefully after that I’ll be out and seeing loads of birds.

      The ridiculous thing is Little Grebe is so easy to see around my area in Lothians, if you go to the right place, I’ve just not been able to drive so haven’t got there yet. Going to try and get a lift from a fellow birder and watch them more intensely, the view through the water was great, but after that it was gone.

      sorry if I’m rambling a bit just back from a wedding at Edinburgh Zoo, great fun!

Calthorpe Projects London, little bit of wildlife in the city, small bird list.

In London for the Chelsea Flower Show and trying to get around London to see a few things, I can’t manage a lot of the wandering so a lot of sitting and eating, far too much!  I did get to to – Calthorpe Projects which has a small but decent nature garden right at the back including bees nests and a pond, for the first time ever I saw newts, who would have thought the first time I saw newts would be in the centre of London!  So impressed.  While there I also managed to see:

  1. Blackbird
  2. Magpie
  3. Starling
  4. Wren

There were a lot of butterflies as well, and a few moths, but didn’t pick up what types, think small white was pretty common, but can’t be sure.

Other birds from today, all over the place

  1. Dunnock
  2. Blue Tit
  3. Feral Pigeon
  4. Woodpigeon

Not a big list for today, but was very happy with the newt!

 

These were comments added before the website went down

6 responses to Calthorpe Projects London, little bit of wildlife in the city, small bird list.
Wes Donze said on May 20, 2013
I am heading to the Chelsea flower show tomorrow – it is the 100th anniversery of the 1st show – have not been for 3 years so looking forward to the show – it’s right by the Thames so you might get to see some birds there as well as in the normal gardens on the site
if you do have a spare day or part thereof you might like the London Wetland centre http://www.wwt.org.uk/visit/london/
There is a direct bus from Hammersmith to the centre

KiwiGav said on May 20, 2013
Hey Wes, Thanks for the info!
I’ll be there tomorrow as well, can’t wait, my first Chelsea.
I’m going to see how my feet are on Wednesday and see if I can make it out to the London Wetlands, I didn’t bring scope, bins or even a long lens for my camera. Just didn’t have the space in my bag for carry on luggage for the flight down. It’s on my list if I can, I’m sure I can still get a good list with eyes only.

KiwiGav said on May 21, 2013
Have a good day Wes? Would have suggested meeting up, but was unsure of what my parents and wife wanted to see and do. I hope to be back next year!

Wes Donze said on May 20, 2013
yes i’m sure you will still get to see plenty – i believe there may be binocular hire there too

KiwiGav said on May 20, 2013
Thanks Wes!

KiwiGav said on May 21, 2013
Told my dad this today and he said “I’ve got mine, you can borrow them!” YAY! I know where I’m off to tomorrow!
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Last day in the Netherlands – Bird count was low.

Spent most of the last day resting either at the hotel or at the airport just to relax my feet, still managed a few birds:

  1. Common Buzzard
  2. Coots
  3. Cormorant
  4. House Sparrow
  5. Jackdaw
  6. Lapwings
  7. Magpie
  8. Pied Wagtail
  9. Starlings
  10. Woodpigeons

The gardens in the Netherlands were amazing, however we were a little too early for a lot of the Tulips this year, normally would have been the peak week but the cold weather was not great for them, I’d love to go back! I’ll try and get a few photos up in the next few days, I’ve got a lot of work to do on the money saving websites and a few smaller jobs I’ve got to send out photos for.  Hope there’ll still be time for bird watching, I hope to try and get to a few of the RSPB reserves in Scotland – find your closest ones: http://www.rspb.org.uk/scotland/ over the next few weeks, I think my feet are finally up to the challenge :D

Another great day out at Keukenhof gardens, decent bird list.

Even though I was out doing my real work, photography, I managed to update the savings, ISAs and credit cards over on www.saverscene.co.uk (now closed as I move into gardening as a profession) then a few of the banks went and changed their rates and I had to do it again tonight!!!  How inconsiderate of them!  I did get out to Keukenhof today and got to see some great birds as well as a few 100 very nice flower photos.  I sadly missed by just a few minutes the mating dance of the Great Crested Grebe, a few other birders seemed to take real pleasure in telling me!  I didn’t see as many bird species today as I did the other day, here’s my list today:

  1. Blackbird
  2. Carrion crow
  3. Chaffinch
  4. Chiffchaff
  5. Coots
  6. Egyptian Goose
  7. Great crested grebe
  8. Great tits
  9. Greylag goose
  10. Grey Heron
  11. House Sparrow
  12. Jackdaw
  13. Lapwings
  14. Long-tailed tits
  15. Magpie
  16. Mallard Duck
  17. Moorhens
  18. Mute Swans
  19. Oystercatcher
  20. Pied Wagtail
  21. Starlings
  22. Tufted duck
  23. Woodpigeons

The Comments that were below this post before the server move:

  1. Wes Donze said on April 24, 2013

    thats a good list – hope to see something similar this weekend as i am heading there myself – also heading to a spot where there should be a number of birds near where i am staying in Weesp.

    Apologies for not yet posting my bird list from Sweden – i seem to have been so busy this last week or so – am taking the laptop this weekend so might get a chance when i am in Holland

    I have seen the mating dance of the Grebes twice before – once in Holland too – and just caught the very end of it in Sweden a few days ago

    • KiwiGav said on April 24, 2013

      Weesp does look like a great place for seeing birds! Lots of water around there. I hope you had a great time in Sweden and have a wonderful time in Holland. I’d never seen a Grebe before, so was very happy to see them, when at Keukenhof they’re just round from the Wilhelmina pavilion, after the bridge near the white horse statue, where the river bows a bit, Keukenhof map here:
      http://www.keukenhof.nl/uploads/2013/Plattegrond/2223_kh_plattegrond_2013_v6_lr_def.pdf

      You’ll be going at a great time, the flowers are a lot later this year, a lot still weren’t out when I was were there! First time I’d been back in 10 years, last time I was 23 and with a heap of Aussie backpackers, good fun, but probably didn’t take as much in as I could have.

      Totally understand being busy! If I didn’t have to take every second day out for putting my feet up I’d probably not have been able to do updates, but I would have got out a bit more to see the birds. I’ve just gone back to bed at 10.20 am to write this! Feels odd and terrible to be spending so much time off my feet!

      I’ll try and get a few photos up before you go, ran out of room on my computer, but will move things about tonight.

  2. Wes Donze said on May 2, 2013

    Yes I saw the Great Crested Grebe on a nest there. As you say the flowers are later this year – 1 to 2 weeks i’d say – also the birds – I have seen a Grebe with young there, also Mallard and Mute Swan with young but they were all late this year

    KiwiGav said on May 2, 2013

    Glad to hear you got to see a good range there. I really have to sort my photos out, I just don’t have any room on my computer, it’s ridiculous! My photography computer is still packed in storage.

Keukenhof gardens and the birds I spotted there.

Had a bumper day today and added a few life birds, Great Crested Grebe (bit slow on that one!), yellow and pied wagtails.  Once again internet has been down most of the evening so just a quick note of the birds in the hope the net stays up long enough.  Most from Keukenhof or on bus journey there.

  1. Blackbird
  2. Blackcap
  3. Carrion crow
  4. Chiffchaff – heard and seen
  5. Common Buzzard
  6. Coots
  7. Dunnock
  8. Feral Pigeon
  9. Great crested grebe
  10. Greylag goose
  11. Grey Heron
  12. House Sparrow
  13. Jackdaw
  14. Morehen
  15. Oystercatchers
  16. Pied Wagtail
  17. Lapwings
  18. Magpie
  19. Mallard Duck
  20. Moorhens
  21. Mute Swans
  22. Skylark – seen and heard
  23. Sparrowhawk
  24. Starlings
  25. Swallow
  26. Tufted duck
  27. Yellow wagtail

The Keukenhof gardens are great, but don’t go on parade day, it’s so busy!  I was hoping to go to Haarlem to see the parade at the end of the day but my ankles were worn out again and I couldn’t face another bus ride.  Hopefully one year I’ll get back over here to see the festival!  I also managed to update the best interest rates for instant access ISAs tonight as I was informed Coventry have changed their best interest rate to a 1 year and no longer instant access, you can see the best instant access ISA here: http://www.saverscene.co.uk/isa/highest-interest-rate-for-instant-access-isa.html (now closed as I move into gardening as a profession) – Gardening, birds, saving money and pensions my friends call me middle aged Gav, I’m 34, I sure hope to live to over 68!!!  I’ve been interested in most of these things since my teen years, just I lived in Australia and haven’t seen a lot of European birds and there wasn’t wonderful tax free savings accounts like ISAs there!  Sorry rambling again, had pain killers and beer!  whoops!  – Gav out!

Update, thought I’d list this as a friend asked me what a lapwing looked like, there’s photos on here from when I lived at Musselburgh

Wow the wind in Edinburgh had the birds in hiding!

I couldn’t believe how windy it was here, I saw very few small birds at all today, and only heard a blue tit briefly, hope Spring starts properly soon!

My garden bird list for today, and I was outside a lot, although windy it was pretty sunny in the afternoon:

  1. Blue Tit x 1 – heard only
  2. Dunnock x 2
  3. Greenfinch x 1

Not in my garden, but on a walk around Corstorphine Edinburgh:

  1. Jackdaw x 6
  2. Magpie x 1 – collecting nesting material
  3. Rook x 1
  4. Starlings x 2
  5. Woodpigeon x 1

If you happen to be in Edinburgh over the next few days/week The Royal Yacht is celebrating her 60th birthday, even for non-royal fans it’s worth having a look, I wasn’t sure when I went, but the engine room is a great museum piece and the tearoom is lovely, also at this time of year there’s often Eiders off the side, as well as a few different divers, shags and cormorants. Find out more about the 60th birthday here: 60 years of Britannia.

A bit of a better day for the birds.

My legs were really bad today so couldn’t do much walking but one brief trip into the garden showed up 3 wonderful Siskin they were incredibly flighty and didn’t stay around long, but lovely to see!

Here’s my garden bird list for April 13th 2013:

  1. Blackbird x 1
  2. Blue Tit x 1
  3. Carrion crow x 1
  4. Coal Tit x 1
  5. Dunnock x 2
  6. Magpie x 2
  7. Siskin x 3
  8. Starlings x 1
  9. Woodpigeon x 2

Bird list for April 11th, do any other birders collect or take interest in interest rates?

I’ve been busy with my parents here again but have been trying to watch the garden as much as possible.  I’ve also been doing a lot of DIY and work on the websites I do for actual work, now ISA Season is behind us a few banks and building societies are finally increasing interest rates for cash savings, best interest rates for term deposits and instant access for the UK can now be seen here: saverscene.co.uk/savings/ (now closed as I move into gardening as a profession) and for the highest interest rates in Australia: saverscene.com.au/finance/savings/ (now closed as I move into gardening as a profession) I personally find the interest rate differences between the countries fascinating, I don’t know if it’s something with people interested in birds and collecting that find mathematical problems and things like interest rates interesting?  I know pretty much all birders I speak to collected stamps, cards or coins as a kid, many still collect things as adults, I’ve noticed Dr Who Figures, Star Wars Figures and other such things, or are obsessive list makers.  I don’t have the cash for collecting, but like to keep lists and updated pages for those sorts of things.  I like to see comparisons, graphs and charts, any other birds out there the same?

My garden bird list, and a few from just near Murrayfield, for April 11th 2013:

  1. Blackbird x 2 – males fighting for territory
  2. Carrion crow x 1 in garden, 3 mobbing the common buzzard.
  3. Common Buzzard x 1 – getting mobbed by a crow on the edge of the western approach near Murrayfield, Edinburgh
  4. Dunnock x 3
  5. Magpie x 2 – not sure if it was the nesting pair I’ve seen around a bit
  6. Starlings x 2 – and not the evening murmurations as usual.
  7. Woodpigeon x 5

Nice and sunny in Edinburgh today, birds were out enjoying it!

Had a good chance to be in the garden today, nice and sunny, although snow was on the ground to start it thawed very quickly and there was actually some warmth in the sun!  Flying high over head I could hear geese and got a short glimpse of 6, but not sure what type and once again a common buzzard being mobbed by gulls, I wish I could identify the gulls better as there’s been a few overhead of late, look like herring, common or lesser black backed, but not 100% sure, the black-headed ones are thankfully easy to identify!  Will get my bins out soon to get a better view, I’ve let my neighbours know that I’m a keen birder in case they wonder what I’m up to ;)

Here’s my garden bird list for today:

  1. Blackbird x 2
  2. Blue Tit x 1
  3. Bullfinch x 1, male – hoping the female’s sitting on eggs somewhere!
  4. Carrion crow x 1 in garden – about 15 flying over.
  5. Common Buzzard x 1 – flying high!
  6. Dunnock x 2
  7. Long-tailed tit x 1 – pretty sure I could hear more flying past.
  8. Magpie x 1
  9. Starlings x 6
  10. Woodpigeon x 2

Spring finally on the way in Edinburgh?

The Long-tailed tits were so close to me today, it was fantastic!  Maybe less than a foot away, great views for a few seconds, then they were on their way again.  The Magpie I did see was once again collecting nesting material, this time it looked like moss so maybe close to finishing their nest.  2 of the woodpigeons were mating, another great sign of spring, we’ve missed most of the snow, hope for a few fine days soon!  My garden bird list and 1 feral pigeon that I spotted from the car:

  1. Black-headed Gull x 3 – flyovers.
  2. Bullfinch x 2, 1xm, 1xf
  3. Dunnock x 2
  4. Feral Pigeon x 1 – not in my garden, on Ballgreen Road.
  5. Long-tailed tit x 2
  6. Magpie x 1
  7. Starlings x 9
  8. Woodpigeon x 3