My first day of Big Garden Birdwatch

I set myself two challenges this year for Big Garden Birdwatch. The first was to try to photograph all the different species to the garden today. This sounds quite easy, but quickly became more difficult as the day progressed and I kept missing species that are usually quite regular visitors to the garden. The second is to watch use my live cams tomorrow and see how many species I can spot on them over an hour period. You can join in with this if you wish and I will be tweeting about the species I see.

I started today’s challenge in the hub, photographing from two of the windows. There are a couple of feeders I can see from here, so felt confident I would get a few different species. Amazingly, some of my most common visitors…. goldfinch and greenfinch did not show, but I got some great shots of my stunning bullfinches!

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The blue tits were active and I could have got simply hundreds of shots of these animated little characters… I never tire of watching or photographing them.

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As I stood looking out of the window, the great spotted woodpecker appeared and I was delighted to be able to get a couple of shots of him…

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I managed to get a couple of my more common visitors, but the challenge was getting harder and harder.

I stopped for lunch and whilst waiting for the toast, I nipped down to the conservatory to look at the feeders out in the patio area. Something caught my eye… I was absolutely amazing to see a male brambling!!! I have never seen a brambling myself, let alone one in the garden. As you can imagine, I was somewhat excited and, after retrieving the burnt toast, I sat in the conservatory for the next hour waiting for it to return. It came down to one feeder about four times, rather nervous and often hiding up in the tree before quickly descending , only to disappear at the slightest movement. I took lots of photos… many of it obscured by foliage, but I did manage to get some shots which I was pleased with….

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This sighting absolutely made my day! It is rare that I get  new species now, so a very special day.

I managed to finish the day with a few more captures…

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A selection of the other photos I took can be seen on my Flickr set HERE.

I have watched the birds just about all day today and the hour I chose when most species was seen was between 3pm – 4pm. This is the total I will submit for Birdwatch unless I do better tomorrow!

Blackbird  5  (photographed)

Bullfinch  2  (photographed)

Great tit  4   (photographed)

Blue tit  5   (photographed)

Great spotted woodpecker 1   (photographed)

Robin  4   (photographed)

Brambling 1 !!!!!!!   (photographed)

Dunnock 3   (photographed)

Nuthatch  1   (photographed)

Long tailed tit  3

Coal tit  1

Greenfinch  1

Magpie  1

Wood  pigeon  2 

Goldfinch  2

I did miss getting shots of the greenfinch, goldfinch, coal tit, long tailed tit, magpie and wood pigeon… I hope I can capture those tomorrow!