29 February 2008
Finch month continues
A grey but very mild Friday saw me walk around in the slush trying in vain to get nice shots of hordes of finches and other passerines today. Redpoll, Brambling, Crossbill, Asian Rosy Finch (just 1), Oriental Greenfinch and Hawfinch were all present but in the poor light actively feeding birds can be tricky to capture with my photo gear.
Redpolls have been common across the whole region all winter. I don't really know wht. Before this winter the only one I'd ever seen locally was 1 individual 5 years ago. I'd also only ever seen 2 Rosy Finch in the previous 5 years but have seen loads all over the place this year. And I hadn't seen any Crossbills in Hakodate for 3 years either. Bramblings are a bit more regular.
Siskins have been rather scarce this winter and I haven't seen any Bullfinch in town yet this year (although I did see some in Onuma a couple of days ago). these tend to come around this time to start nibbling on the buds that start to sprout on the trees.
Not much else around except the Finches. Lots and lots of Dusky Thrush and a lone female Sparrowhawk.
Shame about Gazza. I saw him once in the players bar at White Hart Lane. Must have been in the early 90's (so he was probably injured). I saw him play a couple of times, once for Newcastle and once for England. The seminal moments I watched on TV. The tears at Italia 90, the free-kick against Arsenal and the lunge against Gary Charles (another alcoholic funnily enough), the goal against Scotland.........the only England player of my lifetime who could have acheived greatness. Could have but didn't. Hope he gets well soon and finally grows up.