Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Crossbills are Calling

April 15th 2013

When I last visited the Meadow Hide (see blog for the 10th April) I sat there for three hours waiting for a Crossbill to come down and drink but without success. I eventually gave it up for that day and as I left the hide I immediately heard 10 Crossbills calling in the trees overheard. I shot back into the hide but they flew off over some Silver Birch into the distance. So close but so far but well worth another go another time. Well that time is now and I once again settled down for another vigil.

The usual suspects were all present with Blackbirds, Chaffinches and Goldfinches coming down to the ponds for a drink or a bath.

The fantastic male Pheasant was also strutting his stuff in front of the hide and did one of his famous wing shuffles right on cue.

Although spring is now firmly with us, there are still a few winter visitors hanging on and Redpolls and Siskins were regular visitors to the water's edge.

But the need for a drink is not restricted to thrushes and finches. Even this Chiffchaff popped in for a drink and then a bath.

But then the moment I had been waiting for. A large green finch appeared at the water's edge just 8 yards away - a female Crossbill. Well, it took a total of five hours, but well worth the wait.

Phase 1 complete but now for a male. That took another hour but in this instance the bird landed beside the far pool, a distance of 20 yards away and therefore not as good quality. So that challenge will have to wait until next year.

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