Friday 11 March 2011

What the . . . ?

This morning started well with two Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers at Canons Farm at Aberdour School. Ian arrived just in time to see them but Kojak and Badge weren't so lucky. A good few Common Buzzards were around and Ian and I flushed a Woodcock in Banstead Woods.

Kojak, Ian and I ended up staying at Banstead Woods till well after dark in hope of getting Barn Owl (frequent reports recently from Holly Lane) and/or Tawny Owl. As we were approaching Piddly Pond we flushed a startlingly white bird which gently lifted into the air and through the trees on gentle, fairly slow wingbeats. We were frozen to the spot in shock and confusion. Each of us said 'what the F***K was that?' about half a dozen times. As we discussed it more we narrowed it down to either Little Egret or Barn Owl. It was an incredibly unusual situation for either to be in. We'll never know - for now it's being put down as a 'white thing'. A female Tawny Owl called briefly.

Update on the falcon: 2 votes for runt male Peregrine/hybrid, 1 vote for Merlin x Peregrine hybrid (click here for an example - thanks Graham James for sending me this link).