The winter of 2017 played host to a number of hangover birds from the amazing autumn of 2016, including newly found birds that had presumably been around a while, as well as some beauties that appeared and disappeared unexpectedly.
Some birds proved difficult, like the two male Pine Buntings, but others showed really well, like the stunning Eastern Black Redstart at Skinningrove and the White-billed Diver in Lincolnshire.
Here are some of my photo’s and videos of the birds I saw between January and the beginning of March.
The Dunnington (York) Pine Bunting showed very briefly on 30th January, then much better on 1st March – but on the latter date, although it sat in a tree for a whole minute and I had my camera, I spent more time getting another birder onto the bird and watching it, than preparing to photograph it, so failed to get a picture. Here is one taken by John Pringle.
The Licnolnshire White-billed Diver showed well on 30th January, although the photo’s and video, taken in late afternoon winter light, do not do it justice.
Look at that beak!!
On the 1st of February, I got lucky with the Beeley Dusky Thrush, now settled in a field at the end of the village, and on the day I went, feeding with a Redwing below a big tree, and very difficult to find for the five birders present. I managed to get a fellow birder a new bird, though, so I was as happy as he was.
Managed a couple of reasonable comparison shots, given the distance.
A wintering Yellow-browed Warbler four miles from home and just into Staffordshire, proved quite difficult to see, and took two attempts to get photos.
Finally, a visit to an Orchid site in the Cotswolds to get photographs of rosettes, found me only 8 miles from Stow-on-the-Wold, so it would have been rude not to go there for some lunch – oh and the cage-hopping Blue Rock Thrush, which showed well for all of a minute as it popped up out of the garden in Fisher Close and onto the fence, before popping back down again, Enough was enough, and some photos and video were obtained, so time to depart as the rain started.