The Arrse Twitchers thread

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#1
Well I had a bit of a prowl about and couldn't find a relevant home for it so "Science" it is - any Mod wishes to merge or relocate Plse do so.

Right.

Bird watching.

(Sorry? Twitchy Arrse? Nope -speak to the medics,who may prescribe Tubigrip and/or Aspirin)

It occurred to me I can't be the only person on Arrse who can tell a shitehawk from a sparrow at a hundred paces?

We are getting near the time when swallows ,swifts and house martins (Hironidae?) start reappearing around UK.

I was looking at some accom on a farm hereabouts today and spotted the first house martin I've seen this year so far.

When do they arrive in YOUR neck of the woods?

I'm guessing Janners down to the West of me see them first . Scottish swifts and swallows probably don't arrive till mid May?
 
#2
Well I had a bit of a prowl about and couldn't find a relevant home for it so "Science" it is - any Mod wishes to merge or relocate Plse do so.

Right.

Bird watching.

(Sorry? Twitchy Arrse? Nope -speak to the medics,who may prescribe Tubigrip and/or Aspirin)

It occurred to me I can't be the only person on Arrse who can tell a shitehawk from a sparrow at a hundred paces?

We are getting near the time when swallows ,swifts and house martins (Hironidae?) start reappearing around UK.

I was looking at some accom on a farm hereabouts today and spotted the first house martin I've seen this year so far.

When do they arrive in YOUR neck of the woods?

I'm guessing Janners down to the West of me see them first . Scottish swifts and swallows probably don't arrive till mid May?
I love when the Swallows arrive back. Usually around mid-April (south Tipperary). Been looking out for them for a week or so now but no sign yet.

I also find Buzzards fascinating. They repopulated Ireland naturally having become extinct in the early 20th century. There has been an ongoing project for several years now to reintroduce the Golden Eagle and the White Tailed Eagle here.
 
#3
Spotted a couple of swallows on golf course yesterday. (Liverpool)
 
#4
The first house martins arrived here (SE Wales) a few days back, but only one of two pathfinders so far. We don't get many true swallows and the nearest sand martins I've seen were on the R Wye. But across the mainland UK there are two sand martins for every house martin and ten of the latter for every swallow.

We took the dogs to Barry beach the other morning, to be greeted by a fly-past from a ring-necked parakeet. The latest of a few escapes in the area.
 
#5
Red Kites, Blue Tits, Great Tits, Buzzards, Crows, Robins and Magpies. I'd probably spot a Kingfisher and I know the Heron that lives across the valley. All from the comfort of my window looking on to the feeder. The Red Kites are a dime a dozen round here, Buzzards less so but still relatively common.

At night I hear a Pair of Tawny owls shouting at each other from the woodline behind me and the Churchyard in front of me and I'm not sure but I think it's a Scopes owl occasionally too (still unmistakeably owl but quite screechy, almost a cross with a fox scream).

Otherwise they're that brown one, that (insert colour here) one.
 
#6
I saw the first swift of the year on Friday in Norfolk. Or at least I think it was a swift - too big and dark for a swallow or house martin and flying low alongside farm buildings.

I have three house martin nests on the end of the house and have been looking out for returning occupants for the last few days. I hoped they'd return on Sunday with the warm weather up from the south but no sign yet.
 
#7
Red Kites, Blue Tits, Great Tits, Buzzards, Crows, Robins and Magpies. I'd probably spot a Kingfisher and I know the Heron that lives across the valley. All from the comfort of my window looking on to the feeder. The Red Kites are a dime a dozen round here, Buzzards less so but still relatively common.
Buzzards are more common around here, which is great because ten years ago there weren't any. I'd love the Red Kites to move in - they're not far away, maybe 20 miles or so, and I have seen one over the village allotments a couple of years ago.

The birds I love to find are the Goshawks in the woods, but you have to be sneaky to spot them. Amazing birds.
At night I hear a Pair of Tawny owls shouting at each other from the woodline behind me and the Churchyard in front of me and I'm not sure but I think it's a Scopes owl occasionally too (still unmistakeably owl but quite screechy, almost a cross with a fox scream).

Otherwise they're that brown one, that (insert colour here) one.
Best place I've been recently for Tawnies is Symond's Yat. Walking the dogs just before dawn the place was full of them yelling across the Wye.
 

Goatman

ADC
Book Reviewer
#9
I saw the first swift of the year on Friday in Norfolk. Or at least I think it was a swift - too big and dark for a swallow or house martin and flying low alongside farm buildings.

I have three house martin nests on the end of the house and have been looking out for returning occupants for the last few days. I hoped they'd return on Sunday with the warm weather up from the south but no sign yet.
Thanks for that, just the kind of info I was puzzling my tiny mind over. Don't know what the migration tracks are like, but I imagine they pass over Dutch airspace to get to sunny Norfolk?

Down here in the New Forest we have plenty of buzzards, but I've also seen a couple of red kites in the area ,and further up the road towards Salisbury Plain.

Common as muck over the M40 heading up towards Bicester thobut! :highfive:
 
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#10
We get the usual suspects in the back garden but a few weeks back I had one of those marvellous 'what-the-f**k' moments. Came back with the dogs from the morning walk to be greeted by four little brown buggers perched on a branch at the far end (you don't need binoculars....). But they had prominent flattened head feathers- I could think of only two options: skylark or waxwing. No chance of the former there, but no waxwings around here either. Then, on the news that night, sightings of waxwings all over S Wales.
 
#13
Buzzards are more common around here, which is great because ten years ago there weren't any. I'd love the Red Kites to move in - they're not far away, maybe 20 miles or so, and I have seen one over the village allotments a couple of years ago.
But you've go marsh harriers and hen harriers instead, lucky man!
 

AlienFTM

MIA
Book Reviewer
#14
Walking back from shop this morning, a pair of goldfinches landed on a garden fence right in front of us and sat long enough to admire their markings.

This year is proving great. Two years ago I'd just been "retired" and wasn't in a good place. Last year, Zero Alpha had suffered a fall and was ill, and we were neither of us in a good place. I'm seeing the Spring this year instead of being sat indoors.
 

greyfergie

MIA
Book Reviewer
#16
Anyway - almighty crash on the upstairs window this morning and this wee bugger had hit the lounge window and then fallen off the sloping roof....
image.jpg


Given an hour of TLC and a sit about it eventually got it's faculties back and eventually buggered off :D

Little nuthatch
 
#17
A few years ago, part of my parking routine was McD's paper bags and rubber bands.
Local birds would attack their own image in the side mirrors of the car, smearing it with wing-oil and crapping down the bodywork.
 
#18
My kid's primary school was on a long straight road.
The birds fly along the route, and it was amazing to watch.
Huge 'wings' of pelicans coming across early in the morning. 30/40 at a time, then another formation a few minutes later.
There's a pub at the end of the road called the 'Pint and Pelican'.
 
#20
We get the usual suspects in the back garden but a few weeks back I had one of those marvellous 'what-the-f**k' moments. Came back with the dogs from the morning walk to be greeted by four little brown buggers perched on a branch at the far end (you don't need binoculars....). But they had prominent flattened head feathers- I could think of only two options: skylark or waxwing. No chance of the former there, but no waxwings around here either. Then, on the news that night, sightings of waxwings all over S Wales.
Meh-sounds as though I'm not too far from you: waxwing here (just to the West of Newport) are almost a dime a dozen. Facing out to farm land (and with at least two feeders on the go), the elevated decking attracts the usual suspects plus nuthatch and-I swear to God-twice now, a Wren. Evening brings out both Barn and Tawny owls competing in the dusk shouting match, Common Pipistrelle bats and a dog fox whose beat includes having a wazz against the decking supports.

Penarth Marina, where I moor the boat, has a resident brace of swans: they raised 3 last year, from a clutch of 6, and this year she is sat on 7 eggs. As I'm up in what is known as the Inner Basin, the reduced activity encourages the two cormorants to dive and feed close to the boats, plus grebe and at least 1 (probably two) heron. The icing on the cake has been 3 flashes of petrol blue as the male Kingfisher nips across the water as it feeds on carp and bream fry.
 
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