35 Birds I'd Like to See in 2012.

Bean Goose
Ruddy Shelduck
Red-breasted Goose
Velvet Scoter
Green-winged Teal
Black Grouse
White-tailed Eagle
Quail
Honey Buzzard
Rough-legged Buzzard
Stone Curlew
Great Shearwater
Jack Snipe (21st Jan.)
Common Crane (7th Apr.)
Caspian Gull
Glaucous Gull
Roseate Tern
Long-eared Owl
Tawny Owl
Hoopoe
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker (26th Feb.)
Citrine Wagtail
Woodlark
Shore Lark (7th Apr.)
Water Pipit (29th Feb.)
Nightingale (6th May)
Icterine Warbler
Grasshopper Warbler
Crested Tit
Bearded Tit (19th Feb.)
Penduline Tit
Chough
Common / Mealy Redpoll
Red-backed Shrike
Bee-eater

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Friday
May182012

Red-necked Phalarope.

I took my birding equipment to work this morning, tempted by the possibility of taking the afternoon off if the female Red-necked Phalarope was still present at Slimbridge this morning. Unfortunately it wasn't, but fortunately it (or another bird, who knows) did show up at Coombe Hill Meadows early afternoon. With the weather closing in I was quite happy to wait until home time and then dash off. Still, the trip from the centre of Chelteham to the wharf was fraught with traffic lights stopping me at every available opportunity, slow drivers, incompetent drivers, potholes and one charging ambulance (okay I can't complain about the last one).

I waded into the Grundon hide shortly after 1740hrs only to be told that some gulls had chased the Phalarope off just a few minutes ago. Blast. I tweeted in frustration, but tweeted too soon. Four minutes later the Red-necked Phalarope was spotted in the middle distance, quietly feeding away from the gulls. Keeping a low profile. I tweeted again. Delight.

By now the weather had closed in. Fine, misty rain, low cloud... but through my telescope the bird shone. With that amount of red, how could it not? This was (I think) my fourth Red-necked Phalarope, but my best view yet. There is nothing like a Phalarope - especially a summer plumaged Red-necked.

Too distant to photograph.

The weather. Was poor.

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    Blue Birding - Blog - Red-necked Phalarope.

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