Sunday 26 November 2017

Finch finding

I mentioned recently that the Hawfinch invasion was in danger of passing me by - I finally caught up with one last weekend on a visit to friends in Kent but had still yet to see one at home in Dorset, so I set out this morning with the aim of doing just that. Several sites seem to be holding Hawfinch since they arrived but Bonsley Wood near Blandford Forum sounded like one of the most reliable so I headed there. I bumped into one of these chunky, short-tailed birds before I got to the main wood, a few more whilst there, and even more on the way back, confirming the impression formed from recent reports that they can be seen just about anywhere in suitable habitat at the moment. Brambling, Redpoll and Bullfinch were also in the wood, an enjoyable couple of hours in a location I hadn't checked out before.
Hawfinch, Bonsley Wood
This head-on view shows the bulk of a Hawfinch bill
Side view of the impressive bill
The best flight shot I could manage - note the curled tips to the primaries can just be seen on the edge of the folded wing
A few Brambling were in with the Chaffinch flock in Bonsley Wood
Grey Wagtail, Bonsley Wood
Bullfinch last weekend at Sissinghurst in Kent
Fieldfare, Sissinghurst, Kent
Fieldfare, Sissinghurst
Mistle Thrush in Yew at Igtham Mote, Kent
Redwing, Sissinghurst
Nuthatch, Sissinghurst

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