Last Walk of Jan 2015

Last Walk of Jan 2015 Carrion Crow - Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Last Walk of Jan 2015

I’m guessing today will be my last walk of January 2015. I may manage one on Friday but may not. It depends on weather and. well. if I feel like it (got to work nights over the weekend, boo). Unfortunately it was only a quick one today as I had shopping to do first, and the sun didn’t last long. While I’m no fair weather birder, not much point being out taking photos if the light is poor.

Anyway I guess I’ve waffled enough for this mornings intro!

Last Walk of Jan 2015

With only limited light today (I knew it would start failing around lunch time, well I say knew I guess I mean it was reported that…) I headed straight for the lakes just to make sure I wasn’t missing a wader or exciting duck before heading off around the rest of the patch (at the moment the birds on the Manor Farm pits are just that little to far away to photograph well, with the coming hides I hope that will change).

Of note on the lakes was very little, the usual ducks like Tufted Duck, Teal and Wigeon a Mute Swan or two and the odd Canada Goose but very little else. So I started my walk proper.

The first bird I thought I would try to grab a photo of was a rather confiding Carrion Crow (see title picture), not a bird I often photograph but they can be a striking bird and this one posed well and allowed me to capture the flight shot below (which I am pretty pleased with, I hope you like it too).

Carrion Crow in Flight – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes

Further sightings

I continued on round the lakes, noting little of any substance, a brief flight view of a Little Egret (see photo below) another lovely Grey Wagtail that gave close views, some Pochard and Great Crested Grebe on the camp-site lakes and a stunning Sparrowhawk darting through the bushes along the river, but that was all on the walk up to the Aqueduct and the cattle creep.

Little Egret in flight - Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Little Egret in flight – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes

Birds I’ve Never Managed to Photograph Well

Just a bit of an aside here.

There are a few birds I see on a regular occasion but that I have never quite managed to get good photos of, I’ve managed record shots and OK shots, but nothing special, those include Great Tit, Bullfinch, Green Woodpecker and Great Spotted Woodpecker, I don’t know if it is just because I never seem to manage to be on a level with them or what but I do struggle with them, the photos below are evidence of what I mean, they are OK, but not quite good enough.

Bullfinch (male) - Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Bullfinch (male) – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Bullfinch (female) - Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Bullfinch (female) – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes


Great Tit - Manor Farm, Milton Keynes
Great Tit – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes


On with the walk

After passing through the cattle creep I headed up past the old lock, again not seeing much but finally adding Green Woodpecker to my patch year list (can’t believe it has taken this long), first the sound of his yaffle only but then the stunning green and yellow back of the bird flew past me (the rest of the bird was attached to the colours).

There was little else of note but I’m getting some quite nice Robin photos at the moment so here is another for you (I hope I’ll get one in the snow soon for next Christmas’s cards).

European Robin – Manor Farm, Milton Keynes

Date: 26/01/2015
Time: 1 hour 50 mins
Distance: 3.9 miles

Last Walk of Jan 2015 Full Species List


Greylag Goose1
Canada GooseX
Mute Swan1
Eurasian WigeonX
Northern Shoveler1
Eurasian TealX
Common Pochard4
Tufted DuckX
Great Crested Grebe3
Great Cormorant11
Grey Heron2
Little Egret2
Common MoorhenX
Eurasian CootX
Black-headed GullX
Common Gull1
Lesser Black-backed Gull1
Stock Dove18
Common Wood-PigeonX
Great Spotted Woodpecker1
Eurasian Green Woodpecker1
Common MagpieX
Eurasian Jackdaw2
Carrion CrowX
Great TitX
Blue TitX
Long-tailed TitX
Eurasian WrenX
Grey Wagtail1
Pied WagtailX
House Sparrow5
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  • Mark Appleton

    As knew to this walk would love to know where the old lock is. Great blog, love the bird list at the end, perhraps if headed with a date 🙂

    • AshleyBeolens

      The old lock runs up the Stony Stratford side of the canal (it is from before the aqueduct, when the canal ran into the ouse) best reached from the path by the ouse before the cattle creep (if coming form Stony).

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