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FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT PARTICIPATED IN A WINGSPAN TOUR DURING 2016, THANK YOU FOR YOUR CUSTOM & YOUR COMPANY AND WE WISH YOU HEALTH AND HAPPINESS FOR 2017.

THE PROGRAMME FOR SPRING 2017 IS NOW ON MY

WEBSITE BUT HERE IS A PREVIEW



Jan 15th - 28th. - Sri Lanka. £1750

Feb 12th -27th - Costa Rica - full

Mar 20th - 30th Morocco - 10 nights. - £1190

April 5th - 12th - Andalucia migration tour. - £750 - 2 places

April 16th - 24th - Coto Donana & Extremadura - £950 - 2 places

April 29th - 6th May. - Lesvos - £875

May 8th - 15th - Portugal - full


May 13th - 21st Bulgaria - £850

May 23rd - 30th - Andalucia birds and butterflies - £750

May 31st - June 8th. - Extremadura and Sierra de Gredos - £950

June 12th - 20th - Pyrenees and Picos de Europa - £1050


FLIGHTS NOT INCLUDED IN THESE PRICES



BOOK NOW TO SECURE YOUR PLACE SEND AN E-MAIL TO:

E-mail: bobbuckler49@hotmail.com





















Red-throated Bee-eater

Red-throated Bee-eater
join us for a fantastic tour of The Gambia this November

Sunday, November 27, 2011

CENTRAL PARK - NOV 27TH 2011

WE GOT UP A LITTLE EARLIER THIS MORNING AND TOOK THE SAME ROUTE THROUGH CENTRAL PARK. THE WEATHER WAS JUST AS GOOD, A CLEAR BLUE SKY AND NO WIND WITH MILD TEMPERATURES.


WE ADDED A GOOD NUMBER OF SPECIES TO OUR PARK LIST: COMMON GRACKLE, RED-TAILED HAWK, BUFFLEHEAD, AMERICAN COOT, SONG SPARROW AND THE STAR OF THE SHOW A YELLOW RUMPED WARBLER(MALE).

ALL PHOTOS TAKEN BY JAMES BUCKLER EXCEPT THE WOODPECKER



AMERICAN ROBIN

WHITE THROATED SPARROW


SONG SPARROW

FEMALE NORTHERN CARDINAL

RED-BELLIED WOODPECKER

AMERICAN ROBIN

AMERICAN COOT

Saturday, November 26, 2011

CENTRAL PARK, NEW YORK - NOV 26TH 2011

OUR first morning in New York, it was a beautiful warm day, 16C and all day sunshine, I went to Central Park with my son James and we birded the 'Rambles' for an hour or so.

We found small, mixed flocks of common birds and one or two nice birds too! We started with House Sparrow and Common Starling, our gift to the US. But soon it got interesting. We moved into the quieter areas in the Rambles, it was a wooded area with open glades, on the pathway we found a flock of White-throated Sparrow, American Goldfinch, House Finch and Dark-eyed Juncos.

A White-breasted Nuthatch was very nice and so was a Red-bellied Woodpecker, we saw several Tufted Titmouse and more Sparrows.


DARK-EYED JUNCO (MALE) all photos taken by James because my batteries were flat

Later during the walk we added Cedar Waxwings, a flock of about 10 landed in nearby trees, a couple of Cardinals, including a lovely male, showed very well. We then found another flock of mixed species which contained a couple of Fox Sparrows, what a lovely little bird.

A VIEW OF MANHATTAN FROM THE PARK

WHITE-THROATED SPARROW

Other birds seen were Great Cormorant, MourningDove, Mallard, Blue Jay, Hermit Thrush, Amercian Robin
HERMIT THRUSH

In the afternoon we walked down to the East Hudson River where we saw many Ringed-billed Gulls and a nice surprise was a Bufflehead.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Salisbury - New Forest walk - Nov 23rd 2011

We went in search of Great Grey Shrike around the Pitt's Wood / Godshill area of the New Forest and found none! We did see Great-spotted Woodpecker, Nuthatch, Long-tailed Tit flocks and some beautiful Bullfinches.

We aslo found this 'Fairy Ring'



A fairy ring, also known as fairy circle, elf circle, elf ring or pixie ring, is a naturally occurring ring or arc of mushrooms. The rings may grow to over 10 metres (33 ft) in diameter, and they become stable over time as the fungus grows and seeks food underground. They are found mainly in forested areas, but also appear in grasslands or rangelands. Fairy rings are detectable by sporocarps in rings or arcs, as well as by a necrotic zone (dead grass), or a ring of dark green grass. If these manifestations are visible a fairy fungus mycelium is likely to be present in the ring or arc underneath.

Fairy rings also occupy a prominent place in European folklore as the location of gateways into elfin kingdoms, or places where elves gather and dance. According to the folklore, a fairy ring appears when a fairy, pixie, or elf appears. It will disappear without trace in less than five days, but if an observer waits for the elf to return to the ring, he may be able to capture it.

There are two theories regarding the process involved in creating fairy rings. One states that the fairy ring is begun by a spore from the sporocarpus. The underground presence of the fungus can also cause withering or varying colour or growth of the grass above. Mushrooms, the fruiting bodies of fungi that poke their heads up out of the soil after rainstorms, tell only part of the fungi's story. Hidden in the soil is a huge network of threadlike mycelia. Mushrooms are not individual organisms. Rather, they are just one part of the mycelia lurking beneath the ground.[2]

The second theory, which is presented in the investigations of Japanese scientists on the Tricholoma matsutake species, shows that fairy rings could be established by connecting neighbouring oval genets of these mushrooms. If they make an arc or a ring, they continuously grow about the centre of this object.


WE ARE STAYING WITH FRIENDS, DEBBIE AND NICK, NEAR SALISBURY,THIS MORNING I OPENED THE CURTAINS TO VIEW THE GARDEN AND SAW TWO ROE DEER JUST BELOW ME, HOW COOL IS THAT?


TOMORROW (25TH) WE ARE OFF TO HEATHROW - THEN NEW YORK FOR 7 DAYS.

Monday, November 21, 2011

MID-NOVEMBER UPDATE

Since my last blog on the 1st of November I have spent very little time birding!!! On November 8th we set off for the UK in the car, we spent the first day driving to Zaragoza where we stayed for the first night in an hotel near Belchite. We visited the wonderful reserve at El Planeron in the morning of the 9th November. We saw Hoopoe, Lesser short toed lark, Thekla Lark, Crested Lark and a large flock of Calandra Lark also Red Kite, Common Kestrel and Raven.


VIEWS OF EL PLANERON PLAINS NEAR ZARAGOZA












From Zaragoza we travelled to the Pyrenees where we stoppe d at Astun for lunch. A large flock of Alpine Chough were eclipsed by an adult Lammergeier which drifted over us and landed about 100 meters fromus, my camera and scope were both in the car!!!













The Pyrenees at Astun on the French/Spanish border.


We made it as far as Bergerac before pulling over and finding a hotel for the night. On the 10th Nov we drove from bergerac to Calais and took an evening ferry to Dover and then drove the short distance to maidstone where we stayed for 3 days.

During our stay in Maidstone we visited Rye Harbour - it was a typical November day in the UK - no sunshine, dull, overcast, drizzling rain and cold. Oh how I love to be in England now that Novemver is here.

At Rye I was pleasantly surprised by the number of birds present - Golden Plover and Lapwing numbered in their hundreds, whilst lots of Curlew, Redshank, Grey Plover, Dunlin, Snipe and a good variety of gulls were present.









Over the last weekend we stayed in Somerset, near Dunster with friends on their Cider farm, hiccup!! Gill and Noel are birders and they took us out on Saturday when we made a visit to Steart Point in Somerset which was also dull, overcast, drizzly and cold!! Again we saw hundreds of Golden Plover and Lapwing, with Shelduck, Curlew, Wigeon, Dunlin, Grey Plover, Redshank and not a lot else.






However on the way back to the car park we stopped to look at some Curlews in afield and noticed a larger bird quartering the field behind the far hedge - it was a Short-eared Owl, fantastic. We walked nearer and the bird showed really well, a second joined it for a while before they clashed and the intruder was chased off. A superb Display and our bird of the day without a doubt.






We are now back in Crewekerne and we are off to Salisbury tomorrow to stay with more friends - who knows I may get down to the New Forest to see a Great Grey Shrike! Watch this space.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

November 1st 2011 - Camino Gibraltar

A short walk this afternoon down as far as El Nobo produced several birds in song: Blackcap, Robin and a Sardinian Warbler in full song.

Bird of the moment must be the Black Redstart it is everywhere, the last few weeks has seen a massive invasion of these iconic winter visitors. You can see them squabbling /feeding/resting on nearly every roof in many streets in the village and lots more can be seen in the campo. But what a little beauty. At least 3 are roosting in my courtyard everynight.