Monday, 21 February 2011

More Great Grey Shrike...

I set off to Derbyshire this morning with Russell and just as we were pulling out of the village he got a message to say that the Great Grey Shrike was still present and showing well in front of the Geoff Smith Hide so we went and had a quick look.

Five minutes after leaving mine we got to the Geoff Smith Hide where Alan (Duffbirder) and Jono (Birding Dad) were present - evidently there had been no sign for the first hour of light but it had just appeared. A few seconds after entering the hide I had the bird back in my scope showing well (although the phone-scoped photos below really don't show that!). It sat up in the top of a short bush looking around for breakfast and then gradually started to make its way further away from the hide into a large hawthorn bush where it went deep in and more-or-less out of view.

Great Grey Shrike (about 08.15ish)

Great Grey Shrike (about 08.15ish)

We had to leave for Derbyshire (which as dull to say the least today) so left the site about 08.30hrs. It appears as though this may have been the last time it was seen?

After our trip to Derbyshire we called back in to North Duffield to see if there was any sign. We'd had messages throughout the day that there had been no further sign but felt it worth a try. The wet weather had reached us so we made a quick dash to the hide which was full of people (good to meet up with Chris again) but there was still no sign of the Shrike.

I took the opportunity to scan through the waterfowl with the following recorded 4x Shelduck, 10x Tufted Duck, 70x Shoveler, 10x Pochard, 5x Pintail plus Wigeon, Teal, Mallard, Moorhen, Coot, Mute Swan, 1x Whooper Swan and 288x Lapwing (there was at least 1500 in the area but most of these were out of sight on the ground and only seen in flight when a Sparrowhawk flushed them). 2 Barn Owl were observed hunting around the scrape and showed well at times.

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