Report on OBC trip to Rufford CP, Sherwood and Welbeck Raptor Watch Point – 15/2/19

Six members enjoyed a glorious day (albeit with a chilly start) and shortly after arriving, we were delighted to all be able to view through the scope our main target bird in the form of a female Hawfinch. During a trip round the park, we saw over forty different species but the highlights were the 21 Goosander on the lake, Siskins, and Marsh Tits.
Having completed a circuit we gave in to Bill’s moaning about his lack of breakfast by retreating to the cafe where plans were hatched for continuing the trip over at Sherwood in the hope of seeing Lesser Spotted Woodpeckers that had been reported the day before. For those that haven’t been to Sherwood recently, there’s now a big new car park on the east of the road with the fancy new visitor’s centre on the west.  (RSPB members park for free). While we all enjoyed a magnificent walk through the ancient woodland, it’s sad to report that we didn’t catch up with these rarely seen little birds, and even more galling was a chance meeting with another birder later in the day who had seen them 20 minutes after we’d left.
After that it was on to the raptor watch point at Welbeck where we had an excellent close view of a female Sparrowhawk, up to five Buzzards in the air at once, a Kestrel and three separate sightings of Peregrine Falcons but no Goshawk in spite of the conditions being perfect.
All told 51 species seen.
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