Saturday, 11 December 2010

tesco is shit

why? cos this morning i walked up to buy a digital camera for my mum to give to my dad as a christmas present,after choosing the said product and its accompanied large security box,i proceeded to go and pay for the item.
after 20 minutes in which no one could open the security box,my offer of placing it on the floor and stamping on it was met by funny looks and i may damage the product.i explained i have been breaking things since i was a small child and thus im quite a expert! but they would not let me break the fucking thing open!
they did offer to get me another bit i replied 'dont fucking bother' god i hate shopping.

but on a happier note next friday im off to see LADY GAGA

Ms Gaga VIP tickets.........check
train tickets..............check
the look on my face when i saw how much its costing...............priceless.

i think i could of bailed out ireland

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Ring Billed Gull Mirfield

headed over to selby for my brothers birthday, so thought i would call in and pay my respects to the ring billed gull at sands lane thingy.
it was a balmy 0 degrees and the cracker was showing as soon as i managed to stop my little car on the icy roads.
ring billed gull
sands lane

black headed gulls
sands lane

quite a nice twitch with just 2 others

Sunday, 28 November 2010

pugneys and pits

the big K

shaw lodge

a few first shots with the sony nex-5 think i need to work on the digiscoping though

Saturday, 27 November 2010

a new camera

i have become fed up of canon their products which are not cheap are crap in the build quality.maybe its just me and bad luck but out of 7 products 4 let me down

350d= no problems
40d= shutter failed on 24768 clicks just after the warranty ran out
50d= no problems
100-400= zoom failed had to be sent back twice
400 l= no problems
50mm 1.8= just fell apart after 1 day
bg e2n grip= got stuck on the 50d had to be taken apart to get the dam thing off

so i was in the market for a new system, nikon looked good but very expensive, so i thought about sony but a lack of lenses,im not including sigma as they are cheaper and in my opinion from what ive used are crap.
then i saw the sony nex-5, interchangeable lenses and with a converter they can be used with all of the sony/minolta range! so off to town i went after what seemed like ages i walked out of the shop with it.
i got the twin lens kit which is the 16mm and the 18-55mm zoom, so far im very impressed with it.........very small,well built hopefully tomorrow i can put it through its paces

Friday, 26 November 2010

spain 1999

in response to nick dawtreys photo on his blog

firstly spain for birding is awesome just the numbers and species are fantastic.

nick d, ady z, andy c and myself spent a week birding southern spain, no better bunch of birders could be found anywhere,we were lean,mean and keen apart from ady who boasted he never had shit in the week!
we hired a ford fiesta which when we returned it was fucked! god knows how many miles we put on the clock but many of the roads were crap,the road alongside the guadalquivir river was so bad in places we had to get out just to get the car out of the potholes.

andy c is chef of some repute and many people in halifax have enjoyed his fine cooking,but in spain i seem to recall him just eating out of a tin of cassorelle and eating chorizo in the supermarket.
on the plane home he bought us all beer,infact he bought all the beer on the plane.

nick d had his first taste of chicken!! on the plane, though well remembered for his pissed up attempt at trying to stand a aerosol can up,which is still to this day the funniest thing i have ever seen though the electric fence indecent at whitby is a good second.

as for myself i spent the time driving to bird sites phoning my 17 year old girlfriend and buying beer from the many vending machines
without trawling through the notebook the best birds for me were

black wheatear
rock bunting
rock thrush
azure winged magpie
thekla lark
little bustard

myself and 'heavy birder'
note my bausch and lomb elites and nicks swift audubon

ady z, nick d and andy c
at the little bustard site

Egyptian Vulture

Thursday, 25 November 2010

a late chiffchaff

a walk along the hebble from siddal to dean clough. though not possible to do it in parts as its either under the mills or inaccessible,after last weeks rain its now back to normal.

chiffchaff 1 feeding in bushes alongside the hebble by nestle
dipper 3
grey wagtail 5
moorhen 1 by north bridge
sparrowhawk 1 over sainsburys
jackdaws 7 giving great views opposite lidl

the moorhen was the most surprising bird today god only knows where it came from? very strange record for the town center.
the chiffchaff as feeding in the bushes by the weir just before the cantilevered walkway

the hebble

i also visited Bankfield Museum in Boothtown well worth a visit if the weather is too bad for birding

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

birding amongst the dead

Stoney Royd Cemetery

chaffinch 11
g s woodpecker 1
treecreeper 1
jay 3

Sunday, 21 November 2010

siddal to swalesmoor

very quiet bird wise today

common gull 43 coal pit lane
pied wagtail 2 beacon hill
fieldfare 109 shibden
dipper 1 dean clough
grey wagtail 1 dean clough
sparrowhawk 1 shibden

horse gin
crooked lane
catherine slack
Black Boy Farm
once home to Dr Crippen and John Christie!!!!!

whiskam dandy

Saturday, 20 November 2010

The Blue Ball Inn

Blue Ball Inn

left image is from Arthur Comfort's book 'Sketches of Old Halifax' 1912

the Blue Ball Inn started life as the Golden Ball Inn around 1822 on Jemmy Lane in Bowling Dyke under North Bridge.until it closed in 1915 it had 6 landlords and 1 landlady.
no doubt the regulars watched dippers and grey wagtails whilst having a pint or 2

Sunday, 14 November 2010

around town this morning

woodcock 1 flushed in beacon hill woods at the rear of matalan
sparrowhawk 1f
great spotted woodpecker 2 stony royd cem
redwing 17 stony royd cem
common gull 13 horley green

Thursday, 11 November 2010

waxwings smackhead city

found 5 waxwings at work in castlefields runcorn today.ive been working in runcorn for 8 years so they made a nice work tick.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

sunday 7th november........not bad!

walked around the town area in the afternoon

some good birds for such a dull day.

waxwing 7 over pellon lane near aldi
brambling 2 at shroggs park just below the football pitch
redwing 18 in snake hill wood
sparrowhawk 1 male over shroggs tip
grey wagtail 5 along the hebble from old lane to siddal
mallard 36 in peoples park

manage to find the location of the wonderfully named Spice Cake Lane which was located between King Cross Road and West Parade. it gets it name from funerals of all things,which currant loaves and spice cake were popular food at such an event.hence the local saying

''looks like a case of currant cake and slow walking''

reputations were made with the quality of the funeral teas! must have been some good spice cake in west parade around 1800.

on the way home past dean clough mills i took a photo from Blue Ball Bridge of the Hebble under North Bridge. i knew i had a seen an old photo very similar a while back,when i found it the result was very similar.

The Hebble from Blue Ball Bridge

The Hebble from Blue Ball Bridge

Saturday, 6 November 2010

birds,nature,history and industry

a great walk today though the weather was unseasonally warm,birds were on the quiet side.

coal pit lane

common gull increased to 98
stock dove 7
redwing 4
meadow pipit 2

at the top of the lane i got great views across yorkshire and could even see Drax power station in the distance which is 35 miles away as the needle tailed swift flies!!! headed into Binns Wood and towards Elland GP.i gave the lakes a miss due to the amount of people and made my way into the old tip looking for jack snipe and only found 16 meadow pipits.

the power stations
Ferrybridge,Eggborough and Drax

following the river past the weir onto shaw lane i had a look around the recently demolished brickworks.another lost industry gone locally.
it was quite good for finches with 7 bullfinch and 34 redpolls and the surrounding hedgerows held 67 house sparrows.
Calder Fireclay Works

cutting across the fields between lower edge road and dewsbury road, i wanted to have a look at a very old hall,Halifax has so many of these old halls its hard to get the time to see them all.
the New Hall of Elland is actually 520 years old.
i realised this hall was built before columbus went to america!!! now thats old.

built in 1490 and cased in stone sometime between 1640 & 1670. two beams in the roof are said to be from a local gallows which may explain the ghost story that accompany's the house.......

local birders will be well aware of the Tag Cut at the gravel pits, it gets it name from Tag the ghost that rode a chariot pulled by a 2 headed horse from a tunnel under New Hall towards Tag Cut................nightime moth'ers beware!!

New Hall Elland
note the beautiful 'apple and pear' window

mind the step
upper edge

walking towards Elland i saw a very sad site.............the demolition of Gannex Mill,made famous by Harold Wilson.
i would of rather seen it turned into soulless flats than raised to the ground.

Gannex Mill

i can see me getting into fungi and ladybirds

Jews Ear

pine ladybird
hebble trail

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

moth runcorn

found this at work today,at first thought it was a twig!!! no idea what it is!!

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

large ego aka the hardman of birding

i like a bit of juicy gossip as much as the next birder,so this e-mail from a certain listserve certainly puts puts Mr Evans not as George Michael but as 'THE BOSS' libellous bloggers be aware!! he will come and sort it out!!

ive witheld the recpients name

''**** *****

I do not participate in Birdforum threads as a matter of choice but if you
would like to continually talk about me in a libellous way, can you kindly
email me directly or perhaps place your vitriol on here so that I can
respond directly to your claims.

As far as I know, you don't know me from Adam and have never spoken to me
and know nothing about me or how I operate.

I shall be visiting Tacumshin this week and with any luck, it may be
possible to link up with you. I can drive over to west Cork if need be because
the irritation you are causing me knows no bounds and I would like the
opportunity to sort it out

Lee G R Evans''

THAT Twitching programme

Barry Bagnell whilst he came across as a nice chap,i got the impression he as clueless as a chimp.the poor chap is so scared of upsetting lee,he was quivering like a baby when lee told him the gull was not the azorean gulls, BARRRY grow a set of fucking balls.
i would have thought with all the twitching Barry doeas, his wife would have plenty of free time to do some housework and replace the wallpaper that was hanging off the wall.
the Craig's came across as a bit looney but Mrs Craig is a GILF. and we are all jealous of Mya's year list,at least the older daughter seems to have found a hobby of her own when her parents leave her in the house alone.

Lee Evans was obviously confused as he seems to be suffering from a bout of schizophrenia and a bad case judging how likens himself to george micheal and gordon brown.
i just thought lee liked birds.

and lastly poor old Brett,poor fella is so skint he cant twitch anymore.

Monday, 1 November 2010

sunday fairburn ings and bubwith ings

a short visit to fairburn ings around lunchtime if only to see some birds,well mainly diving ducks which i have had a long time interest in,but alas too misty,in the hour i was there i could only muster willow tit,water rail and a few pintail.
bubwith was dry so only tree sparrows though some one did try to make a group of grazing sheep in to swans.
all in all a crap day!!

found some old photos heres the first.......................

pigeon on
the Empire State Building
July 2001

here's a heron sat in a bush at fairburn yesterday

the only working coal mine in yorkshire the BIG K

Saturday, 30 October 2010

no waxings today

walked a fair few miles this morning but no sign of any waxwings,infact i saw very little apart from 28 redwings flying over gibbet street.
no birdy pics today just some of this wonderful town called Halifax....................sorry

Friday, 29 October 2010

young birders

many years ago i was a kid lister and only in the last few years i lost my title of 'youngest birder in halifax' which i thought was a shame seeing as though im 38!!
the trouble with being a kid lister is no one believes anything thing you find! as i used to find to their loss.though the bradford group despite at the time trying to incorporate most of the british isles into their recording area, did never doubt my sightings, i used to ring tony gough my sightings from elland gp, and never once did i get a sceptical comment off him, though after finding the grey headed wagtail at elland in 1990 which i admit i phoned out as a blue headed wagtail! though in my defence i did only see it in flight!
Before i was 18 i had done some fairly decent birding finding good birds eg the grey headed wagtail,little gull,little tern and breeding lesser spotted woodpeckers locally along with a laughing gull at hipperholme which got rejected by the BBRC, id found my own yellow browed warbler at spurn,id twitched the double crested cormorant at billingham and the snowy owl at wainfleet,visited fair isle and scilly.

i could of been a contender

but alas like nearly all 'kid listers' i succumbed to beer and women! their comes a time in 'kid listers' life when beer tastes better than stale coffee from a flask and getting a feel of tit is better than seeing a beared tit.
once you have tasted the beer and decided that a quick juvenile shag in the alley outside the nightclub is better than birding your fucked! birding takes a back seat for a year or 4!

so my advice to 'kid listers' is leave the women alone and stick to coffee, and if your a 'kid lister' from devon id lay off kicking the american bittern around!

Thursday, 28 October 2010

woodcock,little owl and lashings of ginger beer

well back to work today,so no waxwings.
on the way home through jagger green near holywell green 1 little owl and 1 woodcock made the long drive home bearable.
fish and chips for tea from a proper fish shop washed down with a few bottles of.......................

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

more waxwings

searched yesterdays sites with no luck,despite dave sutcliffe texting to say their was 20 around the fire station at king walked down hopwood lane towards town.
found 50+ in the trees between the bottom of lister lane and gibbet street (bedford st).very hard to get an exact count as they were flying around quite a bit.last saw them flying towards hanson lane.great birds

bedford st, halifax

wainhouse terrace

watch out for needles! when looking for