Monday, 27 February 2012


Apparently we 'need' a new kitchen. I should explain. We had a leak, one that went unnoticed for some time until it spilled out from the dark depths of the under sink cupboard and began to seep through the cracks of the badly laid laminate floor. These things have a habit of turning nasty and this is no exception. We foolishly decided to purchase a new sink, apparently one that matched the hob was critically important all of a sudden, instead of just replacing the leaking waste pipes. Plumber arranged, cupboard cleared only to discover that current sink was glued in place in rather a permanent fashion and refused to part company with the 14 year old, now obsolete and unobtainable anywhere work surface. Dire cost consequences.

So this morning found me heading for Ikea to collect a kitchen catalogue. Not wishing to pass up an opportunity and with plenty of time to wander I pushed a little further south to Derwent Park, just to the south of Rowlands Gill. A small children's play park, devoid of life on a Monday morning ensured my two could tear about and make as much noise as they liked whilst I set-up nearby and scanned the tree-lines.

The main attraction down that neck of the woods is the Red Kite activity, they didn't disappoint though this morning's action was x rated as a courting couple of milvus were wasting no time (Green 76 and untagged male) and not worried about public sensibilities, getting it on for the world to see just south of the Toddler Park.I think we had 4 in the air at one point though there were possibly different individuals further south appearing periodically so conceivably up to seven in the area. Three Grey Wagtails flew north, a year tick, whilst a Great Spotted Woodpecker put in a brief appearance.

 "Dirty, Dirty Birds" (per Toby Collett who wasn't rubbing his hands on his knees a la Vic Reeves)

Post-coital chit-chat courtesy of a disgracefully ancient Iphone

After Ikea and a quick Pizza Hut lunch we headed west to an area high above the Tyne Valley just before the Northumberland/Durham recording border starts to twist south bearing away from the Tyne. A bit grey and a few spots of drizzle so not the best day for soaring raptors, however, we managed 2 more Red Kites both inside the Durham boundary sadly, a single Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk on the right side of the Tyne. Two more Buzzards soared above a small wood south of Darras Hall as we sped home.


Johnnykinson said...

You may have misread the wing tag Alan. Friends of Red Kites have WT 76 down as Chester a male. 70,73,75 and 78 are all females.

alan tilmouth said...

Thanks John, as you know when you're intent on capturing stunning images such as those in the post minor details can go out the window.

Codders said...

I know what its like Alan to be afflicted with such a photographic talent as ours, sometimes composing the shots for my amazing images make me misidentify the odd bird or two