Wednesday, 5 January 2022

0924 : Once More To The West (2/1/22)

The enthusiasm of the 1st of January had deserted me by the time the alarm went off on the morning of the 2nd. Granted it was very early as I had been intending on heading to Riverside Nature Park to be there while it was still around an hour before sunrise. The plan was to try to find Woodcock at the park using the thermal imager. I switched off the alarm and had another few hour's worth of sleep instead. Once I did get out of bed, despite not really feeling like going anywhere, I got organised and headed out a lot later than intended to walk to Riverside Nature Park.

Jay

It was around 0935 when I stepped outside. Herring Gull, Feral Pigeon, Woodpigeon, Carrion Crow, Blackbird, Starling, Black Headed Gull, Magpie, Jackdaw and Robin provided a steady stream of additions as I followed my route to work. New birds were added at a much slower rate as I continued on. Blue Tit, Goldfinch, Great Tit, Chaffinch, House Sparrow and Wren were noted between Byron Street and the football pitches at Lochee Park. There were gulls around there, a mix of Common Gull, Black Headed Gull and Hering Gulls. There were also a couple of Oystercatchers, some Woodpigeons and the usual Carrion Crows.

Stock Dove and Goldcrest were both heard at the hill. Walking round the south side of the hill, my first 'new' bird of the day flew over into the trees at Royal Victoria Hospital - a Jay. Siskin was heard but not seen before I headed downhill towards the park. Heading out along Riverside Avenue towards the park I met another birder going in the same direction. We had a bit of a chat and it transpired we'd met before, on an RSPB outing to the Angus Glens some years ago. We added Coal Tit and Long Tailed Tit before we reached the park.

As we were both planning on wandering round the park anyway, I suggested to the other birder, Davie, that we might as well have a wander round together. He agreed, so we had a blether all the way round about birds, birding and mostly Dundee birding. Two pairs of eyes and ears worked in our favour though it was rather windy. There seemed to be fewer birds around than recently. Herring Gull, Magpie, Siskin, Robin, Feral Pigeon, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, Goldfinch, Wren, Coal Tit, Song Thrush, Great Tit, Black Headed Gull, Stock Dove and Blackbird were all noted before we reached the Lochan. Teal and Mallard were noted there as well as a single Redshank but once again there was no sign of the local Moorhens.

A Sparrowhawk was seen in flight before we wandered onto check the bay. Woodpigeon and Jackdaw were seen on the walk there. A Bullfinch was heard near the hide but not seen. In the bay there were numerous Redshanks but there didn't seem to be much else. Much scanning did produce a single Black Tailed Godwit and 2 Dunlin (though photos of the birds roosting showed there were at least 7). A Grey Wagtail flew past and I spotted a Turnstone among the Redshanks on the pipe. I eventually remembered to check the gulls, finding that there were a few Common Gulls on the water with the Black Headeds and Herring Gulls. The Greylag Geese flock were still across the far side of the bay.

Davie noticed a Cormorant on the water and as we walked round the rest of the park we added Curlews at the airport (once again) and Oystercatchers over the river. Greenfinch and Blue Tit were also found but overall things were relatively quiet. I suggested heading up to check Ninewells Arboretum in the hope of getting Nuthatch on the list for the year. Davie agreed so we headed through the Invergowrie underpass and up past the Gore building. I mentioned we might find Bullfinch and sure enough we found one in trees behind the Carseview Centre. We added Redwings and Dunnock in the Arboretum which refreshingly seemed to be teeming with birds.

We went in to the Community Garden where Jed who I'd last seen at Eastern Cemetery was sitting watching the feeders. The three of us chatted as birds came and went, to and from the feeders. Chaffinch, Dunnock, Robin, Stock Dove (6 at once!), Woodpigeon, Blackbird, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Coal Tit and Greenfinch were all seen. Although Jed had seen the Nuthatch coming in to the feeders before we arrived we had to make do with hearing it call from nearby, as it seemed to be refusing to visit the feeders while we were there, unlike the Great Spotted Woodpeckers which showed quite well. A Buzzard drifted over, flying along side-on in the wind. Jed headed off around 1445, and Davie and I hung around for another 15 minutes or so before heading for home.

As we were both heading in the same direction (Davie lives not far off my route to/from work) we continued birding and chatting along the way, though we failed to add anything else to the list for the day. I made it home around 1615 having seen (or heard a total of 43 species of which 7 were new for the year - in bold). As Davie does a lot of birding around Dundee, (he doesn't drive either), I gave him a note of my contact details so that if he finds anything decent he can let me know, which will hopefully help me towards my target of 140 species in the city in 2022. Getting 140 species will likely need to be a team effort, with others finding birds I then manage to see, just as last year's was.  All in all, an enjoyable day's birding with lots of enjoyable and interesting chat.

Redshank
Mallard & Teal
Greylag Goose
Redshank & Black Tailed Godwit
Dunlin
Redshank
Redshank & Turnstone
Redshank & Turnstone
Redshank & Turnstone
Black Headed Gull & Common Gull
Goldfinch
Redshank, Black Tailed Godwit & Dunlin
Redshank, Dunlin & Turnstone
Cormorant
Redshank, Black Tailed Gowit & Dunlin
Jay
Jay
Jay
Jay
Great Tit
Stock Dove
Stock Dove & Woodpigeon
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Buzzard


Birds (outwith Riverside Nature Park) - Blackbird, Black Headed Gull, Blue Tit, Bullfinch, Buzzard, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, Coal Tit, Common Gull, Dunnock, Goldcrest, Goldfinch, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Great Tit, Greenfinch, Herring Gull, House Sparrow, Jackdaw, Jay, Long Tailed Tit, Magpie, Nuthatch, Oystercatcher, Redwing, Robin, Feral Pigeon, Siskin, Starling, Stock Dove, Woodpigeon, Wren.

Birds (at Riverside Nature Park) - Blackbird, Black Headed Gull, Black Tailed Godwit, Blue Tit, Bullfinch, Carrion Crow, Chaffinch, Coal Tit, Common Gull, Cormorant, Curlew, Dunlin, Goldfinch, Great Tit, Greenfinch, Grey Wagtail, Greylag Goose, Herring Gull, Jackdaw, Magpie, Mallard, Oystercatcher, Redshank, Robin, Feral Pigeon, Siskin, Song Thrush, Sparrowhawk, Stock Dove, Teal, Turnstone, Woodpigeon, Wren.

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