Sunday, 16 June 2013

I like golf

Actually, I don’t. It’s boring. But, I’ve enjoyed visiting some golf courses recently, not least Kington Golf Club in Herefordshire last year. I’ve always found golfers to be a tolerant bunch (tolerant of birders, at least…). My latest trip to not play golf was on Friday 14th June, to see the male Greenish Warbler on Turton Golf Course, near Egerton in Lancashire.

This was another post-work job for me – not too far. I arrived in drizzle to find the bird had been showing “two minutes ago” high in a beech tree. I watch this area for half an hour or so, enjoying some nice views of three Nuthatch fledglings huddled together on a branch whilst being fed by their very active parents.

Everything was greenish...

I started to look further afield, and so did a couple of other birders, and soon one picked up the Greenish Warbler just down the slope of the clough. Nice work. The bird was feeding low down in some young trees: pines, oaks, beech, and birch (in fact all the trees in the plantation, except the rowan trees).

The greenish (!) colouring on of the upperparts was clear, as was the strong, long supercillium. It had a small, pale wing bar, and the underparts were very pale. It moved freely through the lower branches of the trees, staying close to the ground for long periods. It occasionally wagged it’s tail between flights, but could remain completely still on a branch for periods. Nice bird, and well worth popping back to lovely Lancashire for it.

I headed home, listening to some demos of early ELO, of all things. I tell you, they were really heavy in those days. The "Harvest Years" three-CD set has some great stuff on it from their heavy prog days. So, home for a curry and a weekend of digging the garden and being a good father for Fathers’ Day (i.e. no Pacific Swift for me…).

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