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Sunday, 17 November 2013

SUNDAY 17/11

Decided on another trip to HEMPSTED FOREST to try for 3 different Crossbills. Managed to leave home at 9am but got lost on the way there and wasted a lot of time getting back. Arrived to find 10+ people with the same idea as me and was told that should have been there 10 minutes earlier.
Most people left and I heard the call of Crossbills and 6 landed in the Oak tree one was a stunning male Parrot Crossbill a first for me. After a few minutes of preening the birds were disturbed by a Peregrine which flew casually round the edge of the woods and stopped in a close by Pine tree.
The six birds flew to distant trees and eventually flew back over our heads but the number was now 10 birds. According to a photographer one of the 10 was a Two Barred Crossbill. I decided it was time to leave as it was one better than last visit with 2 kinds of Crossbill ( better luck next time) . The Peregrine was still in the Pine tree showing very well and would have been bird of day if not for the Parrot Crossbill and Common Crossbills.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Wednesday 13/11

Phil Sharp and I had not seen the 3 Crossbills in Kent and decided that today will be the day we tried. After meeting at Sissinghurst at 10 am we drove to the Forest , arriving we were told that 10 minutes earlier the Common and Parrot Crossbill were showing well. After a short while there was a fly over of Crossbills which landed in a nearby tree. Scope gave good views of Common Crossbill and what was possibly a Parrot Crossbill.
After an Hour + flyovers were observed but no great views. After all other birders had left we were lucky to have 5 land in the tree in front of us including a stunning male. No sign of Two Bar or Parrot. The woods were devoid of birds only Great Spot , Blue / Great Tit and Pidgeon , Robin flyover Fieldfare.  Considering the date 2 Butterflies and 2 Dragonflys were seen. Return back over the marshes I found the first Bewick Swans of the winter at Midgley Drying sheds.