Sunday, 6 January 2013

Foot It Day 2: More hybrid crows

Spent the morning and early afternoon Footing It by following the Braid Burn downstream rather than upstream. Immediate success in the form of Grey Heron (species 50) and Grey Wagtail (51), with 3 or 4 of the latter. Another two Dippers added excitement along the river.

Grey Wagtail in the Braid Burn at Cameron Toll shopping centre car park. No Pied Wagtails yet though...

Into Inch Park and another hybrid Hooded x Carrion Crow had me thinking that this was a different bird to either of yesterday's. Then a pair of Stock Doves put on a nice show of bowing and strutting and posed for photos - this species normally seems to be very shy - maybe with the nice weather they were thinking about other things.

Stock Dove posing in Inch Park

At Duddingston Loch, Teal, Goldeneye, Canada Goose and Cormorant provided easy pickings but the unexpected absence of Little Grebe stalled me temporarily on 55 species. I scanned the margins repeatedly and wished that I had shouldered my scope but instead accepted a salmon-pink fly-by Goosander (56) as compensation. With Raven (57) and Great Spotted Woodpecker (58) also appearing at this site I returned home. No new species to come I did see Sparrowhawk number three and hybrid Hooded x Carrion Crow number four in Craigmillar.

My fourth Foot It hybrid Hooded x Carrion Crow - how many until I can tick Hoodie!...

While I always keep an eye out for these hybrids to see 4 in 2 days is a little surprising. I think that I have now seen enough Hooded Crow genes while Footing It to make a whole - just unfortunately not all in the same individual bird!

So with 58 species already recorded (89% of original target of 65), I have decided to revise my target upwards by adding all of my possibles to my probables to my new target of 75...

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