Monday, 20 January 2020

Brent update

Pale-bellied Brent goose - there were 34 feeding in Heysham skeer SE corner at low water up till dusk. These are 32 of them, they move on to water when the Knot get spooked. The other 2 seem less concerned.

This is what they are feeding on.
At low water they have to come on to the skeer to feed, but as the water rises they can feed above it on the water.

The two Canadian ringed birds were there, as was a third ringed bird, whose details could not quite be made out today.

Redwing 26 on south side of MIddleton Nature Reserve access road

Sunday, 19 January 2020

Nice day - Birds ok too!

Light overnight freezing leaving open water partly ice covered, then a largely sunny day.

I knew it was going to be a good day when I shared my breakfast with my first garden Blackcap this winter (MD)

Pale-bellied Brent goose - Pete Crooks recorded 32 flying in to Heysham village bay. These are some of them in the skeer corner. Photograhed from sea wall by Kevin Eaves.
Mediterranean gull - adult near children's play area (also PC)
Eider 45 in low tide channel, but unfortunately the Shag didn't make an appearance today.

Middleton Nature Reserve mid morning.
Mute 7 adult + 5 juv
Coot 2 together
Moorhen 15
Gadwall 27
Wigeon 1
Mallard 7
Teal 16
Tufted 2 male
Little grebe 2 together
Water Rail 2

Great White Egret - two sightings, both flying east 10:50 and 11:00, almost certainly two different birds

Grey Wagtail - record just received of sighting from Yeovil (see scheme detailed to right). This is the second most distant record

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Nice day - shame about the birds

Pale- bellied Brent goose - 2 were in corner of Heyshem skeer by 11:15 as tide was still ebbing they hung around feeding in the margins and eventually made their way towards the play ares at 14:30.

Other stuff around the skeer
Great-Crested Grebe 6+
Red-breasted Merganser 3
Eider 8+

Incoming IOM ferry
No Kittiwakes or Mediterranean gulls but,
Common Gulls 29

Friday, 17 January 2020

Another guest appearance

Goosander - Not as interesting as yesterday's grebe, but a redhead on water to north of Heysham skeer at low water - this species is barely annual here.

Shag 1 adult resting briefly near conger rock on skeer, before a short feeding session then disappearing

Also around skeer
Great-Crested grebe 6
Red-Breasted merganser 3
Yesterday's grebe had not turned up by 12:30.

Hopefully more later

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Black necked Grebe

This really is the winter of the unreliable and elusive at Heysham, probably due to complex circuits including extensive private or difficult to access terrain.  Notably ‘the’ Black Redstart.  Early winter, a Black necked Grebe was staled out on the Lune Estuary, then a gap before a single date multiple observation a bit further down the coast.  This morning in the incoming tide a reliable and experienced  observer was watching as  it or another flew into the slacker and shallow inshore water off Heysham Head, being dwarfed by nearby RBMs and GCGs.  It then fed intensively until lost from sight after 30 mins of spending the majority of time under water.

Worth checking equivalent stage of tide tomorrow?

Eider - 12
Single figures of RBM and GCG

Med gull - ad by play area

Salt marsh
Jack snipe 1
Common snipe 12
Rock pipit 1

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

Jack Snipe surprise

Scoped from Knowleys Rd by Pete Woodruff
Mediterranean gull - 1 initially on shore then settled on horse field inshore of play area.
Pale-bellied Brent goose - 6 out from the children's play area on flooding tide.

Ocean Edge salt marsh 30 minutes before high water
There were no snipe at all at this time of the tide yesterday. Today:
Common snipe 8
Jack snipe 3 - think this is highest count this winter
Reed Bunting 5
Rock pipit 1
Ringed Plover 17

Middleton Natyre Reserve late afternoon
Mute 5 adult 3 juvenile
Coot 1
Moorhen 12
Gadwall 32
Tufted 1 male
Teal 4
Mallard 4
Little grebe - 2 feeding together on the "no swimming" pond. First record of more than one bird this winter.

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Brentless today, but BRS compensates

No Brent geese got as far as Red Nab today. It seems hit and miss, at the moment, when they decide to cross over from the west side of bay

Black Redstart - 12:00 Red Nab was almost covered when it flew west to east over the remaining rocks and headed down Ocean Edge foreshore loosing height, suggesting it was going to land. A walk back along foreshore did manage to relocate it about half way along. Good views for about half a minute, but pouring rain meant my (MD) camera was stashed away, by the time I got it out it had dissapeared behind a rock and presumably flew back towards the Power Station as it couldn't be found again. Frustrating!
Rock pipit 2
Grey seal - one feeding in No.2 outflow

Unfortunately car problems left Pete stranded at home, so unable to check the Knot flock again. Even more frustrating!