Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Hull, City of Culture 2017

The Three Ships, a mosaic on the front of the former BHS store in the city centre. The mosaic by Alan Boyson,  was installed in 1963 and contains around one million tiny cubes of Italian Glass. Hull Civic Society applied for it to be given listed status in 2016  but this was rejected by Historic England. The Civic Society have appealed against this decision and let's hope they are successful as this is a such a prominent piece of art in the city centre and worthy of saving. 

A wind turbine blade in the city centre, part of the year of culture displays. The local gulls are definately enjoying their new 'big perch'! 

'Dead Bod' on display at the Humber Street Gallery in Hull. 
The much loved graffiti featuring a dead bird was painted on the Humber side of a corrugated iron shed at Alexandra Dock in the 1960's by Captain Len Pongo Rood. It became known as a shipping marker but until it was saved and put on display, it was only ever seen from boats in the River Humber.

The Headscarf Revolutionaries. They were four women from Hull, led by Lillian Bilocca,  who secured major safety improvements to Britain's fishing industry in the wake of the worst disaster, the triple trawler tragedy where three Hull trawlers sank within 2 months of each other, resulting in the loss of 58 lives.  This is on the gable of a college on Anlaby Road. 

Hull City Centre - never quite seen so much orange clothing, orange bollards and roadworks.   

Philip Larkin, poet and the librarian at the University of Hull.

'Avocado' hanging in the Ferens Art Gallery and bought by the Duchess of Cornwall for £300. The painting drew quite alot of attention and a crowd hence the crooked photo  (taken through a small gap in a large group!)

A replica of Amy Johnson's Gipsy Moth, built by the inmates of Hull Prison hangs in the roof of the Paragon Railway Station.  

A lovely day in Hull starting at the University to see the Lines of Thought exhibition on tour from the British Museum. It was free to enter and well worth the visit. There are 70 works in the exhibition, with drawings from Rembrandt, Durer, Degas, Henry Moore, Michelangelo and Matisse among many others. We hope you all visit Hull, the City of Culture 2017 at some time during the year. There is plenty to see, most of it free so get yourselves there ! 

Monday, February 13, 2017

Bluethroat, Willow Tree Fen, Lincs

What a cracking bird !  
The sun shone and the bird showed....what more could you ask for on a Monday !  

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Birding highlights UK 300 to 400

It seems just like yesterday when we went up to the Loch of Strathbeg with Wayne and Clare to see the Sandhill Crane but it was actually on 24th September 2011.  Sandhill Crane was Karen's 300th UK bird and it has taken her 6 years and 4 months exactly to see the next 100, taking her UK total to 400. 

Those last 100 birds took us up and down the country at a bleep of the pager !  Flask and butty made and off we went for the next tick and we enjoyed them all, making new friends and having a laugh at them all. 

I have listed the memorable and mega birds since the sandhill crane.....

On the same day we had American Black Scoter at Blackdog. It was interesting to be there while 'clipboard' people measured up and photographed the dunes, beach and grass behind us. Little did we know this would turn into the very unpopular and unwanted Trump golf course !  

In that year other highlights were 26th September  - White Rumped Sandpiper at Alkborough Flats
1st October - Long-billed Dowitcher at Freiston Shore
9th October - Ferruginous Duck at Barton upon Humber
16th October - Glossy Ibis at Saltholme RSPB
29th October - Squacco Heron at Attenborough Pits
5th November - Isabelline Wheatear at Spurn
27th November - Desert Wheatear at Bempton
3rd December - Tundra Bean and White Fronted Geese at Alkborough Flats
4th December - Western Sandpiper at Cley
11th December - Green-winged Teal at Alkborough Flats
26th December - Great Grey Shrike at Wroot
30th December - Great White Egret at Susworth
31st December - Red-necked Grebe at Covenham Reservoir

A Happy New Year and onto 2012

22nd January - Lesser White Fronted Goose at Cantley Beet Factory, Norfolk
12th February - Ring-necked Duck at Hatfield Moors
26th February - Ring-necked Parakeets at Weelsby Road Woods
10th April - Thayers Gull, Elsham Top
14th April - Hoopoe, Horsey Gap
27th April - Bufflehead, Covenham Reservoir
28th April - Red-rumped Swallow, Barton upon Humber
29th April - Marsh Warbler at Cleethorpes
22nd May - Cream-coloured Courser on a golf course in Wales
23rd May - Temincks Stint at Frampton Marsh
24th & 25th May - Dartford Warbler, Golden Oriole and Stone Curlew at Dunwich Heath and Minsmere
27th May - Dotterals at Alderfen Fisheries, Wroot
2nd June - Roller, Aldborough
3rd June - Red-backed Shrike at Flamborough
30th June - Alpine Swift at Bempton Cliffs
1st July - Roseate Tern at Frieston Shore
4th July - Glaucous Gull at Elsham Top and a Quail at Bonby Top
14th - 21st July - A Golden Eagle at Crested Tits in Scotland
7th August - Stilt Sandpiper at Low Newton by the Sea
17th August - White-rumped Sandpiper at Spurn
19th August - Red-necked Phalarope at Frampton
22nd August - Spotted Crake, Leicester
19th September - Pectoral Sandpiper, Toft Newton Reservoir
29th September - Greenish Warbler at Spurn
6th October - Pallid Harrier, Firsby, Rotherham
24th October - Bluethroat, Spurn
9th November - Bee-Eater, Seaburn, Sunderland
29th December - Great Northern Diver, Ashby Ville, Scunthorpe

......and onto 2013

2nd February - Kumliens Gull, Barston
9th February - Richardson's Canada Goose, Frampton Marsh
28th March - Lesser Scaup, Frieston Shore
6th April - Long-tailed Duck, Hornsea mere
7th April - Failed with Killdeer somewhere near Manchester
14th April - Siberian Chiffchaff, Spurn
15th April - Baikel Teal, Flamborough
21st April - Sub-Alpine Warbler, Gibralter Point
25th April - Rock Thrush and Caspian Tern at Spurn
5th May - Purple Heron, Chevington, Northumberland
19th May - Failed with Thrush Nightingale at Spurn
30th May - Corncrake, North Uist
1st June -   another Marsh Warbler at Spurn
15th June - self found pair Montagues Harriers, Lincs
21st June - Melodious Warbler, Tiln, Notts
22nd June - Rose Coloured Starling, Wells next the Sea
26th June - Surf Scoter, Filey Brigg
17th July - Pacific Golden Plover, Rutland Water
19th July - Bridled Tern, Farne Islands
17th August - 2 Barred Crossbill at Broomfield Reservoir
25th August - Icterine Warbler at Spurn
1st September - failed with short-toed lark at Gibraltar Point
7th September - White-winged Black Tern at Attenborough Pits
12th September - Dusky Warbler, Flamborough
13th September - Dusky Warbler (three in two days!)
14th September - Cattle Egret, Louth Canal
15th September - Great Snipe at Spurn
17th September - Blue-winged Teal and Ring-necked Parakeets at Boultern Mere, Lincoln
22nd September - Another Spotted Crake at Blacktoft Sands
16th October - Failed at Flamborough for Isabaline Shrike
19th October - Siberian Stonechat, Scarborough
20th October - Pallid Swift and Western Bonelli's Warbler, Hartlepool Headland
2nd November - Northern Harrier, Ouse Washes
16th November - Serin, Flamborough
15th December - Parrot Crossbill, Budby Common
21st December - Ivory Gull, Patrington Haven

and then it was 2014........

5th January - Black-throated Diver, Cleethorpes Country Park
9th February - Myrtle Warbler, Durham
2nd March - Little Bunting, Lea, Gainsborough
16th March - American Coot, Loch Flemington and Ptarmagan, Cairngorns Car Park
6th April - Coes Arctic Redpoll, Barton upon Humber
12th April - Tawny Pipit, Flamborough Head and re-found the Crag Martin
20th May - Terek Sandpiper, Covenham Reservoir
25th May - Little Bittern, Manchester
26th May - Long-tailed Skua, Hatfield Moors and the Black Stork as it flew from Yorkshire into Lincolnshire at Crowle Moors
4th June - Spectacled Warbler, Burnham Overy Staines
5th July - Black-winged Pratincole, Hurworth Burn, Durham
3rd August - Cattle Egret at Scotterthorpe, Lincs
31st August - Barred Warbler, Flamborough
19th September - Olive-backed Pipit, Gibraltar Point
20th September - Masked Shrike at Spurn
12th October - Arctic Warbler and Raddes Warbler, Donna Nook
13th November - Citrine Wagtail, Danes Dyke, Flamborough
28th December - Blyth's Pipit, Pugseys Country Park
31st December - Little Bustard, Fraisthorpe

A Happy New Year and onto 2015.....

12th February - Laughing Gull, Wirrel
14th February - Harlequin Duck, Aberdeen
3rd May - Red-throated Pipit, Derbyshire
10th May - Citral Finch, Holkham Pines
13th October - Isabelline Shrike (Daurian), Sheringham

And 2016 brought us.....

8th February - Failed at Penduline Tits, Saltholme
13th March - 2 x Penduline Tits, Saltholme
27th May - Savi's Warbler, Blacktoft Sands
28th May - Great Reed Warbler, Paxton Pits
5th June - and another Great Reed Warbler at Waters' Edge, Barton
15th June - Great Knot, Titchwell
26th July - Squacco Heron, Pasture Fisheries, Barton
1st August - Western Purple Swamphen, Minsmere
17th August - Ortolan Bunting, Spurn
30th August - and the Purple Swamphen showed up at Alkborough Flats
10th September - Killdeer, Spurn
5th October - Eastern Crowned Warbler and Black-browed Albatross, Bempton
13th October - Paddyfield Warbler, Flamborough
14th October - Siberian Accentor, Spurn
24th October - Humes Leaf Warbler, Flamborough
31st October - Brown Shrike, Spurn
5th December - Dusky Thrush, Beelsby, Derbyshire was bird number 396

2017 arrived and only 4 more birds needed to reach the magical 400

9th January - Blue Rock Thrush, Stow on the Wold
21st January - Pine Bunting, Dunnington, York
22nd January - White-billed Diver on the River Witham and Woodhall Spa
and on 23rd January - Pacific Diver at Druridge Bay County Park

So there's my 400 birds. I have shared the highlights of the last 100 with you. I wonder if I will ever get to 500 ??  I don't know but I will enjoy trying that's for sure !

Friday, February 10, 2017

This weeks bits and bobs....

Barnacle Geese 

Little Egret 

It's behind you ! 

Pixi - the woodpile panther !

Reed Bunting 


Spotted Redshank 


Water Rail