Friday, 30 April 2010
Thursday, 29 April 2010
Too Good, Too Bad.
Too Good - Owing to the success of Simon King's 'Shetland Diaries', the Islands are expecting a bumper crop of visitors this year - seems that a warm welcome has been sent out to all those arriving on the Islands via Lerwick - see miscellaneous debris.
Too Bad - Brian feels the bitter taste of suppression, made even worse by the fact that everyone knew about it, except him ! Do you know about the bird ?
Wednesday, 28 April 2010
Tuesday, 27 April 2010
Justice at last, news of the Red Kite at Cunningsburgh at dinner time had me heading north again, at least most of the mist had gone today but heavy rain was just around the corner, so confidence wasn't too high. As it turned out it was all pretty easy - saw the bird over the hill side pretty much straight away as it was being mobbed by Ravens and some Hooded Crows and occasionally saw it perched on the fence posts at the top of the hill, this scenario continued for some time before, yet again, it lifted into the returning mist.
Back at Scatness it was year-ticks galore - a House Martin along the cliffs, 7 Swallow and 6 Sand Martin at the back of the Loch, Arctic Skua over the house and a Common Tern at Scord Beach. The Canada Goose, from a few days ago, returned and the 5 Barnacles, the Brent and 28 Pink-feet remain. A Blackcap and a Willow Warbler were present in the garden and a female Merlin flew past late afternoon.
Monday, 26 April 2010
Sunday, 25 April 2010
Saturday, 24 April 2010
Thursday, 22 April 2010
Meanwhile, back in the real world, the Iceland bound Pink-feet and Barnacles still remain in front of the house (presumably due to the flight restrictions still being in force in Shetland !).
Wednesday, 21 April 2010
Sunday, 18 April 2010
Saturday, 17 April 2010
Northern Lights over Quendale.
The other 'bit of fun' this year was to use some song titles as blog titles - seems that one of the other patch year-listers maybe taking it a bit seriously -
Saturday, 10 April 2010
Wednesday, 7 April 2010
Monday, 5 April 2010
Sunday, 4 April 2010
Friday, 2 April 2010
A good while ago, just before I’d left school, I met a birder it Risley Moss near Warrington, it turned out that he lived not far away from me and said that he went birding farther a field most weekends and if I wanted to get a lift with him to some of these places just to give him a ring. So, after a while I ended up going birding with ‘Dave’ most weekends, mostly to places in Cheshire like Frodsham, Parkgate Marsh, Delamere Forest and the like, and sometimes a little further to Llanfairfechan & Aber, Anglesey and the Shropshire Meres and so on. Now Dave was a ‘funny’ kind of fella, who usually did a running commentary on the days birding, often littered with porn related comments, a conversation at the Stilt Sand at Frodsham in 1984 for example, went something like - Me: “It’s quite a smart looking bird, innit Dave?”, Dave: “Aye, it is that, it’s almost as good as a dawn raid on fort bushy”, Me: “Erm… yeah… ok”. Or if he knew of a short cut to a place, he would always say “we’ll use the tradesman’s entrance, fnarr, fnarr”, this was quite entertaining for a while, especially for a teenager and it got me out of the house to sites I wouldn’t have otherwise gone to.
After I’d left school, I was still going birding with Dave, but not as often, one day I bumped into him and his wife in the town and they invited me and my then girlfriend around to their house for dinner, we accepted and duly attended. After dinner all of us were sat in Dave’s front room talking about this, that and t’other, when I notice a large collection of videos of football matches, England v West Germany, England V Spain, there were about 30 or 40 videos all on the shelf, I was just looking at them when his wife says “you can borrow some if you like, pick a few out”, so I did, she put them in a carrier bag and we left.
The following evening I put one on to watch, turns out it’s not an England match after all, it’s hardcore German Porn! I tried the other tape - that was the same! After watching both tapes all the way through, I was shocked and disgusted, so I phoned Dave up and asked him what was going on with these football videos ?, to which his reply was “I have to write football on them otherwise the wife will find out what they are, she’ll never watch football”. After a few months I’d borrowed all of his ‘football vids’, I even started making copies of them and sold them to the nightclub bouncers in Warrington town centre.
A short time later, and I was at Frodsham for an Avocet (a big bird in Cheshire then), when I saw Dave sat on the open boot of his estate car, eating his sandwiches, he called me over and we had a bit of a laugh and a joke, and a bit of a chat about birding and then the subject of football cropped up, and then more specifically, those the subject of the ‘football tapes’, again we had a bit of a laugh about it. Then he said “that’s nothing look at this”, pulling a copy of Fiesta out of his glove box, he then flicked through to the ‘reader’s wives’ section and proudly showed me a picture of his wife!!! (Even Fiesta had censored certain bits of the photo).
This was a very proud moment for Dave, he even went on to show it to a couple of my mates, who he’d never met before! Priceless.
I’m not sure what happened to Dave, or his wife, but wherever they are now - thanks for that big comedy moment.
Thursday, 1 April 2010
Herring Gull (after it had just emptied the bird table).
Just what you'd expect to see in a flock of Starlings.