Thursday, 24 March 2016

Going away present in Surrey VC!

I took another visit this morning to Pyrford Surrey in an attempt to see the Little Bunting which had successfully eluded me thus far! Pictures of this fantastic bird were posted yesterday by Mark Leitch after some eight hours in the field.

There were only a handful of birders at the site and there had been sightings during the morning. I Walked down to the farmhouse side of the field so that I could get a good panoramic view of the area. A Brambling was the first bird of the day on the small area of tree and hawthorns.

I set up and began scanning the field which had a few Reed Buntings, Brambling and Chaffinch running along the channels. Then somewhere in the middle of the field I spied the Little Bunting walking up a channel between the stubble. I started running a mental check of the characteristics that were in full view... chestnut lores, eye-ring, white tick along the chin, visible wing-bar and as it walked up the field the black crown stripe and distinct pattern to the primaries Bingo...!!

I announced the bird’s presence keeping it in my scope view but could not describe where I was looking without risking losing the bird. I had a dilemma on my hands, attempt digi-scoping shots or get people on to the bird through my scope. The latter was always going to win which provided views for a couple of birders but was as it turned out to be the only opportunity of the day!!

A Red kite was a regular feature across the skyline its presence sent a large flock of Stock Dove airborne. I never tire of seeing this species although one has not graced Beddington with its presence this year despite other local records.

The cloud and showers soon closed in making identification of distant birds very difficult. The group of buntings was growing and was estimated to be at 50+ by the end of the afternoon. The weather is set to improve tomorrow with sunny periods which is always good!

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