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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

What a mix up / Whinchats/Stonechats, Fly Flatts.

                              Chats galore    juv Stonechat
                                      Stonechat showing white wing bar
                               Workers van in the background


                                             juv Stonechat


           
                         



                                            Wheatear outside the front door


Fly Flatts, late afternoon. Blue skies and hot sunshine but a pleasant SE>5 kept the temperatures down but awful light camera conditions. Hopefully the grey stuff will be back tomorrow.
                                                         The 2 Kestrels were again present but working well over the moor towards Dean Head giving the Wheatears a break whilst the water just held the usual geese.
Workmen were active on the north west banking which stopped me walking right along but as I got above the feeding station I could see a lot of bird activity further along at the bottom of the banking near the stream. Up with the scope which quickly revealed a pair of adult Whinchats with 2 juvs nearby along with several Meadow Pipits and Wheatears.
                                                                      With camera cocked it was down the banking to squat down behind the fence and scan through the birds. The Whinchats were now very distant and only scope able revealing both adults in moult but the supercilliums standing out. They moved northwards along the fencing beyond the workmen so no chance of getting nearer.
                                                                     Then it got confusing when Stonechats began to appear along the fence nearer to me flitting in and out of the heather, possibly all juvs or adults in moult but nothing representing a male plumaged bird. This left me wondering if the 2 juvs with the Whinchats were actually belonging to the Whinchats or in fact Stonechats.
                                                                   I was now surrounded by at least 5 Stonechat and a total count of 13 Wheatear all fresh in from yesterday probably thanks to the change in wind direction, although they were all at distance and several of the photos required tripod and 2 x converter, 1200mm.
No sign of any waders today .
BS
                                                                       

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