Great grey shrike seen this morning just south of parking area at Triscombe Stone at ST 161359. Hill slopes south and has scattered hawthorns. Area becoming disturbed by dog walkers etc by 1100 so shrike may have moved off but probably still worth a check of the tops of the many thorn bushes if you're out that way. .
Showed v. well this afternoon, ranging from just S of the car park across to the scrub around the quarry edges. Also c. 20 Brambling with large Chaffinch flock back towards Crowcombe Park Gate.
Seen again this morning at 08:30 this morning when it flew up from bushes just above the north side of Triscombe Quarry. It hovered briefly before the very strong winds took it off in the direction of Triscombe Stone.
Just had a phone from Paul Jennings/Dave Dawe to say it is still present at 11:15 back on the hillside below the car park where it was originally seen yesterday below the fence that runs east-west across the grass area.
Still present this morning showing very well, ranging between the north side of Marrow Hill across to the bushes just above the top edge of Triscombe Quarry.
Also a large flock of Brambling and Chaffinch along the track from the Triscombe Stone car park towards Crowcombe Park Gate feeding under the beeches.
Still present and showing well at midday 25th February. On Marrow Hill ranging quite widely in the scattered bushes on both north and south slopes of the hill.
Present again this morning (27th) in the same area on Marrow Hill just out from the car park at Triscombe Stone.
Shrike Seen from 10.15-10.45 along the fence line of the Quarry side though the fog rain/sleet didnt help much
Great grey shrike showing beautifully 15.30-16.00
Many thanks to whoever found this great bird. It is half a mile from my home patch and is a species I've been hoping to see in the Quantocks for the past 5 years!
Also a small party of crossbills flew over calling, local pair of ravens displaying (these nest in Aisholt Combe)
I spent 5 hours up there watching the Shrike a day or so ago.
I sat for a good while behind the fence on marrow hill, when it came a little closer to me and went to ground to catch something. I grabbed a quick photo before it flew to a nearby tree. Then it flew to the western edge of the quarry with what appeared to be through my bins, as a reptile and sat in a hawthorn tree. Around 10 mins later it returned to marrow hill, so I went to the other location to check the tree tops for signs of caching, though couldn't see anything.
Returning to marrow hill, I continued to watch the shrike. It appears to be mostly feeding off beetles.
I've checked the grainy image I took earlier, and it does indeed appear to be very much reptilian and I'm swayed to say a common lizard. I do understand that late Feb is early for them to come out of their winter hibernation, but I can't think what else it could be.
I showed Andy Harris who popped up to see the bird and he confirmed that it had likeness to a lizard more than other possible prey items.
Also whilst up there a raptor flew over, thinking it was a peregrine, I grabbed a quick pic. Is was a long way up, but after close cropping, it clearly shows vertical chest bars and the distinct check mark suggesting a Hobby.
And finally, whilst up there, I spotted a Raven flying over carrying what appeared to be a cream coloured object in its beak.
Moments later I saw a good deal of flapping out in marrow hill. Pointing it out to Andy who was again with me, we both watched a Raven pair, one was on the back the other, so in took it as mating.
Interestingly, the female had the same cream coloured object, this suggests to me a possibility of 'gift giving'.
March 1st, Saturday morning 10.30 to 11.30. Marvellous views of the Great Grey Shrike. He was perched on the top of a holly bush beyond Triscombe Combe on the flank of Great Hill. For half an hour we had just distant flashes of his white chest as he shifted from holly to thorn and back. Then suddenly he’d vanished. Almost immediately Brian Gibbs, who was standing next to me, pointed and said: ‘There he is’ – he was fifty yards away on the top of a thorn, having magically transported himself across the combe to Marrow Hill in just a few seconds. Other birders arrived. He flew over our heads and took centre stage in the rough field below the car park, flicking from thorn to thorn and putting on a good show. Quite wonderful.
Great Grey Shrike showing beautifully this afternoon. Its white front makes it easy to spot and it spent a great deal of time flitting from treetop (thankfully most of the trees are stunted) to treetop in search of prey.
It was located on the Great and Marrow Hill fields - looking from Triscombe car park, the fields immediately below the car park, with the quarry to the left.
My first visit to Triscombe was rewarded by a good view of the GG Shrike, guided by Brian Hill and Brian Gibbs. I also added Brambling to my year list although numbers seemed lower than on some previous reports. I only saw 3 at any one time although I am sure there were more.
Still present today (7th March) at 4.00 pm in same location in bushes
on the Marrow Hill side west of the quarry. Great view of it at one stage
perched on top of a holly bush.
A few bramblings still present among a large flock of chaffinches.
Originally seen in the usual place but didn't stay long, found at the top of the Quarry out of the wind and sat in the sun. Had the privilege of watching this beautiful bird for a couple of hours hopping from bush to bush and catching the odd insect, but like me seemed to be just wanting to catch some rays of sunshine ;o) For those interested follow the link for some pictures http://www.simonthurgoodimages.co.uk/gallery/category.asp?id=1138
The shirke showing well late morning on usual bushes then back to the quarrey and played hide and seek
The shirke showing well late morning on usual bushes then move back to the quarry side and played hide and seek
Shrike still present this morning on Marrow hill though surprisingly hard to spot. Seen catching large beetles but not eating them.
Pic on my flickr site
GGS still present high up on Marrow Hill at lunchtime today 16th March, excellent views but the bird was moved around the hillside by dog walkers, so annoying!!.
I think there are two,have been up there now on a few occasions to film and achieving footage,upon editing there seems a difference in the birds plumage especially on the tail and wings,i will look further into this and show on the internet in due course.
Also on two occasions i have seen the bird fly of to the right towards the quarry and yet with in short period of time seen another in the hedges,and not seen the bird fly overhead,hope that makes sense.
Has anyone else notice differences
Does anyone know if this bird is still around?
Hi Maurice the bird was reported as seen yesterday 26th,it can be elusive at times but if you are out of luck here there is always the one on Exmoor Room Hill, see other Great Grey Shrike posting as we are fortunate in having 2 in Somerset at the moment
Many thanks Dave
The Great Grey Shrike showed very well on Marrow Hill at about 1415 yesterday although when I left it had flown over to the other side of the deep valley. Also in the area a Peregrine, 2 Ravens and a Stonechat.