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NatureBoy

Flocked off again!

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    Out and about early Saturday. Very mild with plenty of flood water about but no pigeons! Checked all the farms and saw just the odd  small group of birds or singles. No signs of of the few big flocks or numbers at all and nothing in the air. Several new gas guns out in some areas and near the woods. Other shooters i saw said the same. Bit of conservation work  and repaired/added to a few natural hides and topped up feeders. Stock doves got young in nest box's and found fresh hatched discarded pigeon shell. Rooks very busy and noisey in the rookerys lining finished nests and others still building. Partridges pairing up and cock pheasants looking there best. Keeping on top of the squirrels, crows and little sign of foxes about at mo. Plenty of finches and buntings about and round the feeders. It was while watching some lapwings and skylarks on distant field with binos i spotted a few pigeons flighting between two woods. As it was now gone mid afternoon thought i would head that way and give them a go. 30 odd birds left the small wood as i arrived. As it was a little early and light i walked the wood to see what was about. Put out 3 roe and a munty. They devastating all the cover in the bottom of the wood. Wind had now dropped and found a place to stand giving best view all round. First birds back saw me and slid wide. Next few birds came over high then  dropping like stones. Missed all with both barrels. Not good! Moved to better position to get bet swing and view. Next birds over i let them come in before getting one with the first barrel. It went quiet for a while before i heard shots from another distant wood. This sent more birds my way. Many high, but in the next hour i had some cracking shots. Some birds seemed to take forever to come crashing down through the canopy. Packed up when the pheasants started going up to perk. Picked 9 birds and a big crow that kept giving me away. lost a couple and could of had more if i hadn't tried to get a squirrel or two that were about. Saw two woodcock and two more munty's as i left the wood. As i stood by my truck a sparrow hawk nearly took my head off chasing a flushed fieldfare. Few more rabbits out and about. Maybe because it's so wet. Birds mainly full of rape and clover, 1 youngster........

    Sunday morning. 8 pigeons in the garden under the feeders. So that's where they get 2. Perhaps they wait for me to go out other times. Off out up new farm after call about problem crows round the buildings. Several about. After chucking few breasted pigeons on there backs on the muck hill they lifted from i tucked between some bales to deaden the shot. 1st came back and was sitting above me as i was putting carts in gun. Up with gun and bang! It fell at my feet and i set it up on a  post. Others stired up at the shot came back with little caution in ones and twos. At times i couldn't gets carts in gun quick enough. All over in an hour tho when horsey folk turned up the and birds got wary. Picked 12 crows. Strange no rooks with a rookery near buy.. . . . 

     Being a bit of a  beach comber as well i headed on down coast later to see the after effects of the beast and the high storm tides. Been in press about lot of dead birds and sea critters being washed up after the cold snap. Sea flat calm and it quiet and eerie. Gulls and crows scavenging the tide line. Not as bad as i had seen on news and heard tho. Plenty of dead crabs, starfish, cuttle bone etc. Lot of seaweed washed up and sadly far to much plastic of all types. even a large piece of carpet. Found bodies and remains of several birds still. The usual gulls plus guillemots, divers, turnstones, oyster catcher, sandpiper, sanderling, blackbirds and snipe. Surprised so many folk were letting dogs run about randomly after a few have got ill and died from eating certain star/shellfish along the east coast recently. Found a few interesting bits of drift/bog wood, rope and stones. Gathered bag of of cuttle bone and bin liner full of seaweed for chickens. Top weekend!         NB

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    Good post.

    I saw very similar environmental damage on the Lincolnshire coast yesterday. Although there were no lobsters (found in their hundreds along the Yorkshire coast) there were thousands of razor clam shells and many hundreds of starfish washed up dead as a result of the storms.

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    2 hours ago, JDog said:

    Good post.

    I saw very similar environmental damage on the Lincolnshire coast yesterday. Although there were no lobsters (found in their hundreds along the Yorkshire coast) there were thousands of razor clam shells and many hundreds of starfish washed up dead as a result of the storms.

    Cheers JD,

    Very sad sight! And will be there for a while after such high tides. Were there many  dead birds washed up your way? Hundreds if not thousands washed up down this way. Folk who went Minsmere/Sizewell stretch early last week reckoned it was really bad! Bodies of various birds every where!  Was amazing to see the many thousands of starlings still doing there thing before dropping to roost in the reed beds at dusk. At times they were out over the sea. Sadly not close enough for a good pic.    NB

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    11 hours ago, dead eye alan said:

     Great post and very informative, i could smell the salt in the air!

    Thanks Dead Eye! Gota love a bit o beach!! Any time of year!  NB

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