Saturday, 28 November 2009

Birding Cornwall

After getting off the Isles of Scilly, we stayed overnight in Penzance on the southwest tip of Cornwall. We had planned to gradually bird our way home, but although the previous day had been a beautiful blue sky and sunshine day, this day dawned cold and grey and drizzly. In spite of this, we managed to get a couple of hours birding in before having to call it a day and head home. The photo below shows St Michael's mount which is a small island just off Penzance. At low tide there is a causeway across to the island.Our first birding stop was at Nanquidno Valley. The scenery here is wonderful even on a drizzly day!We were hoping to see Firecrest and Yellow-browed Warbler down this valley, but the weather conditions just weren't right. Nevertheless, it was a wonderful walk along the Cornish cliffs here.You wouldn't have liked standing so close to the cliff edge as my friends did Evie! (-:
On the way back up from Nanquidno valley, we stopped briefly near St Just airport to see this Snow Bunting. As you can see, this photo is heavily cropped and taken in bad light, so not a brilliant capture, but a nice record shot.We couldn't leave Cornwall without having a famous Phipps Cornish pastie, so as it was nearly lunchtime by now and the weather was worsening, we stopped at Copperhouse Creek to have our pastie lunch. The photo below shows the estuary.At least here, there were some bird photo opportunities. This Little Egret was feeding just below us. You can just about see it's bright yellow feet in the water.
I think the birds have got to know that many people come here to eat their pastie, so as we munched away, we became aware of many beady eyes watching. Rooks are generally found out in the countryside around agricultural fields, but this one has discovered an easy meal can be had at Copperhouse Creek!
They differ from Carrion Crows with their more shaggy look and bare parts around the bill.This is easily my most favourite corvid, the Jackdaw. They have the most wonderful 'chacking' call and that white eye and pale neck are distinctive. They are quite a bit smaller than Carrion Crows or Rooks.These two look like right Jack the Lads! Ready for a bust-up! (-: All they were doing though, was waiting for me to share my pastie with them!Which I eventually did, and then it was a free for all!After lunch, the weather deteriorated even more, so it was time to head home back to Chris after my week away.

20 comments:

Roy said...

Snow Bunting - I should be so lucky.
Nice shots of the the Little Es, lime green feet just don't seem to match do they.
You need to eat more of your pastie, not give it to the birds.

Chris said...

Hi Jenny,
Congrats on the snow bunting.. I still did not see any around here. They are still in the country but should soon come around Reykjavík if the temperatures go down more than that.. Beautiful post as ever!!

Eve said...

I doubt I'll be seeing any more Snow Buntings Jenny! Good for you! Those two Jackdaw's getting ready to cut the rug are the cutest ever! And your really didn't need to be giving anyone your lunch Jenny Wren!
I got dizzy looking at your friends...I would have been yelling at them...or just covering my eyes and walking away!

Eve said...

Oh the new header...Brilliant!!!

The Early Birder said...

Rugged but beautiful coastline..I must try to get further west one of these days. Nice to capture the delightful Snow Bunting Jen. I've posted a few pics on my new blog from the recent Norfolk trip. FAB.

http://fabirding.blogspot.com/

sharon said...

Hi Jenny - nice photos as always, love the corvid shots - Jackdaws are probably my favourite out of that family, such piercing eyes!

Rural Rambler said...

Well Jenny the header leaves me speechless. Your photos are just beautiful. And the Jackdaws are very cool, cute birds. AND I am glad you got a blog entry out, I was having Wren's Nature Notebook withdrawal!

Jenny said...

Hi Roy, you'll have to take a winter trip up to Holkham Gap for some Snow Bunting oportunities! I know, I shouldn't have shared my pastie, they sooooo nice too! (-:

Hi Chris, I will hope to look forward to some low level Snow Bunting shots from you soon then! (-:

Hi Evie, somehow I don't think you are too unhappy at the prospect of no more Snow Buntings! (-: Thought you'd enjoy that clifftop shot! (-:

Hi Frank, I'm sure you'd love Cornwall! I'll go and check out your new blog in a mo.....

Hi Sharon, I thought it was funny that we'd both posted about corvids at the same time!(-:

Hi Pix, glad you like the header and those cheeky Jackdaws. I've had phone fault problems which have only just been fixed, that's why I was absent without leave! (:

Kelly said...

,,,sweet photo of the Snow Bunting. I've yet to see or photograph one, but I'm hoping to find one this winter. Lovely photo of the egret as well. I totally got the willies seeing your friends so close to the edge of the cliffs. I would worry a big breeze would come along at the wrong time....

Kelly said...

p.s. Love the new header. The photo is gorgeous!

John said...

Hi Jenny,

Nice photo of the Snow Bunting, not seen one since last on the Scillies. Love the Cornish Coast even in the murky weather. As for the Jackdaws and Rooks well they are a favourite of mine, I am forever watching them and their behaviour.

John

Jenny said...

Hi Kelly, do you get Snow Buntings in the winter in Cinc? Luckliy, it was an onshore breeze so we felt reasonably safe up there! (-:

Hi John, I think my last SBs were up on the North Norfolk coast before this one. A nice flock at Cley I think. Love those Jackdaws!

Mosura said...

Wonderful coastal scenery!

That "Jack the Lad" shot is funny. Especially the bird on the left.

Jenny said...

Hi Alan, great to see you back in action! Whenever I look at that photo, I see a couple of 'bully boys', fun ones though! (-:

Quiet Paths said...

It's amazing to me how each coastline has its own character. I would love to visit this one someday. So glad you had that pastie! Yum.

Jenny said...

Hi Christine, maybe one day, you'll get the opportunity to sample the Cornish coastline! I hope so!

Red said...

I've been following your blog for about a month. Many of your bird species are the same as ours. The others are a pleasant surprise.I like the way the terrain is prominently featured in your photos. I really like to photos of old buildings. We don't have stuff that's "old". Our old stuff is regularly knocked down.

Jenny said...

Hi Red, many thanks for taking a look at my blog and for taking the time to comment. You must have seen most of my recent birding trip to the Isles of Scilly. The scenery there was so beautiful, it would be hard to ignore! (-:

eileeninmd said...

I love the Snow Bunting and I am hoping to see one this winter. Great photos and post , I enjoyed your blog.

eyanharve said...

beautiful images and very nice blog.
- St Austell