In Dusk We Trust - Some Owling in Co.Durham, North East England, Great Britain
Leucistic Little Owl image copyright Hilary Chambers, Durham.

Friday, 22 July 2011

Show Starter

A couple of trips to Hamsterley between the downpours at the start of the week:-
As soon as this forest edge Tawny moved off, the show began & the first male Nightjar appeared in good light - sadly, i fluffed all the photo opportubities, but the birds put on a superb display, 4 males, 2 females & at least 2 fledged juvs. (different size, shape & weak flyers)
Earliest i heard churring was 8:10pm - although this burst may have been in responce to the prescence of a Jay near the nest area.


#Clip, male Nightjar circling above us, moves off contact calling "goo-ick" & flies on, persued by a fledged juvenile.

Nightjar going away

# Camera phone image of 1 going past 15' away - taken well after the light had gone @ 10:40pm

A couple of fledged juvenile Nighjars were flying around , occasionally begging, with one crash landing into a tree !
Also begging were fledged Woodcock young ( couple of ads still roding )trailing adults & Green Woodpecker with fledged young too:-

One Nest site was close to the track :-
Fragment of hatched Njar egg

Monday, 11 July 2011

Sing for ya Supper

Checked up on the 2nd clutch pair
female still sitting tightly & not making a sound - a mob of noisy young Crows were close by.
Her mate came in high from a good way off, hearing the corvids, he not only dropped but snuck into the edge of the wood & continued in, i just glimpsed him on his way to the nest tree - moments later the crows were all up...
i didnt see, but presume he scattered them, as 3 flew out from cover adjacent to the nest tree.

Later he came in & followed a similar pattern - high approach, steep decent close to the wood & into the far end ( last years nest site, where young were stolen from the nest) - where the Tawny was calling, within moments it was calling again from 50metres away, whilst the male Long-eared came back out of the plantation where he had entered & continued on a direct course to the nest.

Ive had Tawnies & Long-eareds using the same woods for years & years - often the Long-eareds will switch ends (possibly in responce to available nests ?) & as such initial visits suggest that the Leos appear to have vacated the territory.... more often than not this is not the case - theyre simply more mobile than those fat old Brown owls.

No images from me on this one.....
so i'll leave you to savour a snap from one the the regions most talented wildlife camera-men, 'The Gin-Trap Ninja'.

Plenty more in his gallery, but this one is a bit special :-

Spot of Lunch at Lanchester - Canny gob-full there marra.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Artificial nest - 2 young close to fledging

A series of images showing how young Long-eared's attempt to defend themselves while in the nest.

The eldest youngster quickly jumped up onto the rim of the nest tub & took up a defensive posture - ive noticed that on taking up this stance the birds initially close their eyes for a short spell - as if to confuse any would be predators.

who've we got here then......

 A closer view

After a few moments they settled down

Side on view - at this point, one of the adults flew into view - the youngster seemed to forget about his peace being interupted, a good time to head off & leave them to it.

Female sitting on rim of nest.