October 24, 2012

Twigs, twigs, twigs

text and photos © by Andreas Buchheim

As the weather forecast for 11 October was quite bad (snow, all day minus temperatures, wind) I decided to take my camera stuff out for a walk along the river on 10 October. At 8 am I was dropped at the Marshall Bridge and started. The previous night had been chilly with minus 7°C and consequently most bushes had shed their leaves. This should have made photographing easier but there were enough twigs to complicate matters.

Ice-covered twigs in the Tuul Gol

No clouds were blocking the sunlight until the afternoon when some overcast was drawn in by westerlies so I could check for opportunities. This was more difficult than had expected because there were only few birds left compared to my last visit. The lingering birds proved to be experts in staying either in the shade or sitting on the wrong side of the bush or both! Also the shadows of the twigs were much superfluous. What came out that day is shown below.

(Eastern) Marsh Tit

Long-tailed Tit

Female Great Tit

Azure Tit, close-up

Azure Tit

The looser in the single-foot-hanging-contest drops
while the winner remains, Azure Tits

Azure-winged Magpie

leucoptera Common Magpies do not have only very much white
in the primaries but also a pale grey rump of which here
just the uppermost limit is visible

Red-billed Chough having a stretch

Orange-flanked Bluetail and too many twigs

Hume’s Leaf Warbler and too many twigs t(w)oo

Siberian Accentor and too many twigs t(hree)oo

Record-shot of the only Rustic Bunting,
taken from the Marshall Bridge in dwindling light

Male Meadow Bunting

Female Meadow Bunting

Pallas’s Bunting

Pallas’s Bunting

Little Bunting, better hidden than a Siberian Tiger...

...but not always!

I returned back home after 8 hours at the river. By then it had “heated up” to 10°C. Not a bad day but could have been much better (see the complete list of birds below).

Atragene (formerly Clematis) sibirica

Mallard: 16
Northern Pintail: 2
Chinese Spotbill: 3
Common Teal: 2
Grey Heron: 2
Common Kestrel: 1
Oriental Turtle Dove (orientalis): 1
Lesser Spotted Woodpecker: 3
Black Woodpecker: 1
Eurasian Skylark: 150 migrating SW
Horned Lark (brandti, again no flava): 15
Buff-bellied Pipit (japonicus): 1
Water Pipit (blakistoni): 12
Grey Wagtail: 1
Siberian Accentor: 8
Orange-flanked Bluetail: 3
Daurian Redstart: 10
Dusky Thrush: 1
Yellow-browed Warbler: 1 (the same?)
Dusky Warbler: 1
Hume’s Leaf Warbler: 1
Great Tit: 15
Azure Tit: 35
Eastern Marsh Tit (brevirostris): 1
Long-tailed Tit: 25
Eurasian Nuthatch: 1
Great Grey Shrike (Northern Grey Shrike, sibiricus): 1 first winter, a very, very shy bird
Common Magpie (leucoptera): 35
Azure-winged Magpie: 3
Red-billed Chough: 60
Daurian Jackdaw: 17
Oriental Crow: 15
Common Raven: 5
Eurasian Tree Sparrow: 120
Chaffinch: 2
Brambling: 20
Long-tailed Rosefinch: 20
Hawfinch: 7
Pine Bunting: 15
Meadow Bunting: 35
Rustic Bunting: 1
Little Bunting: 2
Pallas’s Bunting: 3

1 comment:

Hernán Tolosa said...

Beautiful pictures and species, all them new for me. Despite cold weather not is the best for humans in some opportunities is good to take birds pictures, winter provides soft light and birds are less active than below summer sun.