sat 24th nov 2012

Gibralter point was the destination yesterday.My old angling mate Bob Pacey came along.After an early Barn owl all was pretty quiet ’til mid morning when 11 waxwings flew over us at Millhill and towards the visitor centre.Later on in the day we counted 19 there.

A corn bunting posed nicely in a tree,before we enjoyed a lovely yellow brimstone butterfly in the sunshine,not bad for late Nov.I didn’t fancy it’s chances with a freezing night ahead.

We went for our second bout of seawatching,after the tide came in,it wasn’t spectacular,but we had several red throated divers,guillimot and a couple of eiders on the sea.Just then my scope and tripod fell over and landed with a thud in the sand. The big lens had about half a kilo of sand stuck to it.Pretty handy realy as I’ve got a bit of repointing to do in the porch back home.It’s happened before,the only way to clean it is to run it under the tap.

Bob was keeping an ‘electronic’ day list on his mobile phone,tapping in new birds while walking,I think that’s when he missed the peregrine.Anyway I think we logged around 70 species.

Another (or the earlier one) barn owl nearly slammed into the windscreen as we exited past the golf course.

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This morning Sat 24th,I went for a reccy of local sites,fully intending to be back for lunch,but that didn’t work out.A look in at the Broad st. area in Grantham revealed a dozen waxwings but there were none in the usual spot at Marston.About 25 were near the Old Barn hotel.

For the last few weeks I’ve been looking through lesser redpolls here for a common/mealy redpoll and reckon I found one today.It stuck out like a sore thumb amongst the lessers,being much paler overall,alot of white on the face including white supercilium and thick white wingbars and pale steaky rump.It had to be.It ticked all the boxes.I was just about to click my camera when it flew.Oh dash it I said,or words to that effect.Does this only happen to me? Couldn’t find the small flock again but they’ll be around,will look again very soon.

A steam train was a great site at the works end.

Met a family from Essex who were visiting in the area and a couple from Ashby de la Laund,Kev and Ann,I think.They had all come to see the waxwings,but were treated to alot of squealing from water rails and cetti’s warblers giving it some vocal.They all thought Marston was fantastic.I was really pleased to find the waxwings at the Old barn as they had never seen them before.I drove back and told them where to drive to.

Saw 2 water rails in flight.A big flock of golden plover made pretty patterns in the air.3 goldcrests and a bullfinch were noted along with a green sandpiper.