Friday, 11 October 2013

If Carlsberg Did Garden Birds...

Sat in the office working away, news flying about all over of Gannets and Bonxies and the odd Arctic Skua inland, including all along the corridor to the south of the York Recording Area... there had to be something, most likely a Gannet in the York Area. A quick chat with Tim and I decided to leave the office a bit earlier and try my luck down at Hemmingbrough, pelagic-central in the York Area... first I needed to call in at home to pick my optics and dogs up as they were coming with me.

A quick turn around and I was on my way, about half a mile down the road and I pick up a huge bird powering low down into the NE wind, 6ft off the ground. Instantaneously I thought GANNET. Slammed the car into a ditch, grabbed my bins, yep definitely a Gannet! Amazing, brilliant. I needed to get a photo to document it. Spun the car round raced back towards the village, the bird was flying parallel to the road so I could track it. It flew right over my dog walk circuit (tick), then I worked out how I could get ahead of it and get a picture. Pull into a gateway jumped out with my camera and as luck would have it the bird (a juvenile) turned and chose this point to alter its easterly direction and fly north, firstly right over my head (amazing view) and then secondly, right over my garden (mega tick!!!).

Unfortunately I then lost the bird as it was so low I couldn't see it past the houses. It looked like it flew out the back side of the village and carried on North.

What a bird - I was totally buzzing! I rang a few local birders but unfortunately I don't think anyone managed to pick it up. Last year Tim et al got mega jammy and got Gannet following the A64, I now know how they must have been feeling!

This bird (assuming it is accepted by the records committee!) will be the 14th or 15th record for the York Recording Area. There is one record pending from earlier this year, there was 2 records last year, but before that it was 2009. I think is my 91st garden bird, need to check... I managed the following shots of the bird. I didn't get time to fiddle with the settings so this is as good as it gets, but at least you can tell what it is!!!

Russ, this one's for you mate. The big mans bogey bird!

Gannet - Incoming

Gannet - Heading towards me

Gannet - Heading towards my garden

Gannet - Over my garden...

What feels like a long time ago, this morning, back in my garden I had my first Fieldfare of the autumn - a flock of 55 flew NW with 185 Redwing and another (1) Brambling too.

I did end up at Hemmingborough, the dogs had a nice walk eating cow poo. I didn't see much else, but I didn't care!

Bonxie tomorrow...

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