Sunday, 24 November 2013

Garden Newcomer

Garden Newcomer
My Garden, Northstead, Scarborough

When just about leaving home to go in to town, great to see pecking away at the garden timber gate and then the nearby tree a Nuthatch, not seen before in the garden.

Brilliant addition to the following seen in the next half hour
Common Crow
Feral Pigeon
Wood Pigeon
Collared Dove
Blue tit
Great tit
Coal Tit
Herring Gull
House Sparrow
Black Birds

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Lunchtime Kestrel

Lunchtime Kestrel
Cockmoor Hall, Snainton, Scarborough

During a quick ride out to Cockmoor Hall today at Lunchtime to get out of the office for half an hour, I was lucky enough to have great views from the car of this hunting Kestrel.

Luckily the camera was on the front passenger seat and didn't have to get out of the car, which would have frightened the bird away.

One strange thing I noticed was that the Kestrel seemed to be listening for prey as well as looking, note the turned head of the Kestrel on some of the photographs. I thought they only searched for prey with keen eyesight, further investigations will have to take place!!


Sunday, 10 November 2013

Grey Seals at Ravescar

Grey Seals
Ravenscar, Scarborough
A fantastic 3 hours or so at Ravenscar, north of Scarborough, late this morning and around lunch time, after a great breakfast at the Watermark CafĂ© on the Marine Drive Scarborough.
There was cracking visibility north towards Robin Hoods Bay, during the walk down to the sea, which had to be done fairly carefully due to the now really poor path and the same being muddy and slippery.
When we got down to sea level, all the cliff bottoms were in the shade due to the low sun height at this time of year and we were to early for the tide to be far enough out to get on to the sunny out crop of land, therefore the pictures of the Seals were shot at quite high ISO levels so not fantastically sharp.
At sea level we were greeted with great sights of Grey Seals of all ages, including some old Bull Seals among the rocks and to the shale beach to the south of the headland, though these were spooked into the sea and off shore by later walkers and sightseers.
Indeed at times you really had to be careful how you walked around, with many pup seals being stuck between various large rocks awaiting mothers or higher tides.
We (me and Adele) ventured north a little way towards Boggle Hole, but were stopped in our tracks, by not wanting to disturb a female Seal which had just given birth to her pup (though other walkers had passed her without even seeing what was going on!!). We stood back and sat behind various rocks for cover while she gradually managed to manoeuvre her pup from behind a sheltering rock, for the pups first feed, indeed during the time we watched, the pup dried out with her coat changing colour and fed a number of times, an absolutely brilliant and wonderful sight.
View north to Robin Hoods Bay

View to the rocks and rock outcrop, which was bathed in sun but not accessible while we were there

A view of various rocks, pick out the seal, note very well hidden, beware where you tread!!

Grey Seals on the south shale beach

Various Seals amongst the rocks

Large Bull Grey Seals

More young Seals

Mother Grey Seal and new Pup (we believe less than an hour or so old)

Saturday, 9 November 2013

Marine Drive and Scalby Mills

Marine Drive and Scalby Mills

A quick hour look around the Marine Drive and Scalby Mills in Scarborough this morning was unfruitful with anything unusual but there were good views of 1 Peregrine on the headland, a couple of Rock Pipits flying around and 3 Harbour Porpoises off shore. At Scalby Mills there were over a 100 plus Wigeon around at high tide, with a group of 30 or 40 Black headed Gulls, also around was the Redshank photographed, a couple of Turnstone, a number of Greater Black Backed Gulls, Herring Gulls and 3 or 4 Cormorant.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Isle of Arran 2013

Isle of Arran
October 2013

Apologies for the very long blog, but have tried to put together a flavour of the Isle of Arran, which to me and Adele is a very special place and where we have visited on 3 or 4 occasions.

Unfortunately as on our other revisits the weather was terrible, with rain most of the 3 days we were there and indeed windy (gales) enough that the Ferry was cancelled on the day of our arrival and shortly after we left the Isle, but then it is our fault we seem to only visit in late October!!!

The blog starts with various views of the North East end of the Island and gradually works through local mammal life and onto bird life.

We generally saw everything we wanted to see, indeed all but dry weather, including a number of birds not photographed which were Golden Eagles, Dippers, Kingfishers and plenty of Common Buzzards. On the final day we also saw a 1st winter Black Guillemot a fist for me, (thank heavens for the Collins Bird Guide!!)which was strangely adjacent the ferry pier, until disturbed by the docking ferry to take us off the island.

Brodick Castle, old harbour

Cal Mac Ferry (not on the days we were travelling)

Seals in the morning sun

Goat Fell and Glen Rosa from Brodick


Corrie Harbour (note the steel sheep boat capstan)


Red Deer

Red Squirrels

Sea Otters

Grey Seals

Bird Life