I found out ,just as i walked out of the door to work, that 3 Penduline Tits had been found at Titchfield Haven NNR on the 7th December `15. Found by Ian Calderwood in front of the Spurgin hide. A male & 2 female/imm. A stunning bird when adult, resembling a miniture Red Backed Shrike, with a call that can easily catch out people being close to sounding like a Reed Bunting but higher pitched and more ttswwuuu. Breeding in Europe and extremley rarely in UK.
Now i have a thing with `Zorro` at TH. My first that i saw was on St.Agnes in October 1988 with the late Tim Lawman, oh boy were those the days !!! It was mid afternoon when news broke when as i walked past somebody ran out of the `Cressa` shouting `Penduline Tit` Aggie………. the rest is history !
Well a year later i was stuck on Scilly and due to start work as a Countryside Ranger at TH. I managed to get off with Paul Stanbury on the Tuesday and was at work on the Wednesday at 0830z.
And so a week or so later i had been brush cutting at the Hook with Warsash reserve when the cutter stopped working. Driving back to TH little did know what was going to happen. I pulled up in the yard and as i got out of the van all i heard was ” MARK ” and Barry Duffin came hurtling around the corner of the cottage with a bird bag in his hand. ” i`ve caught it ” he said ” Come on into the cottage” Stunned and silent i followed him into the Cottage kitchen where he gave me the bird bag and proceeded to close the doors and windows. ” You`ll have to take it out ” he said ” What is it ? ” i asked ” You`ll see” he said. And so i put my hand in the bag and could feel a really small bird i gripped it and then peered into the bag . As Ingrid ,BSD`s wife, was also present i looked at both of them stunned and pulled out Hampshire`s 3rd Penduline Tit ,BSD had 2 on call a few days earlier at TH.
Penduline Tit Remiz pendulinus (0, 24, 11)
Hampshire Titchfield Haven, two, 28th October (B. S. Duffin); juvenile, trapped, 9th
November (B. S. & Mrs I. S. R. Duffin, M.J. Palmer).
Excert from the 1989 BB
My next run in with ` Zorro` was a group of 5 that were seen on the sea front at TH. I was in the yard when that news came in but by the time i had got around to the front they had flown off. Then a few years ago i was at TH and could see Barry, Richard & Ed in the reserve, but i started looking out to sea and missed the 2 Penduline Tits that the others were watching by the side of the Meon Shore hide and which then flew across the river and over the harbour. My luck with ` Zorro` has not been good since the first one,maybe i was spoilt then.
I missed them on the 7th Dec but managed to see a Male on the 8th Dec`15 in front of the West Hide, a perfect location for these stunning birds. He was easily lost to view as he went to the back of the Bulrush and then you found him when he did this !
PS : Hoping they stay into the New Year.