Tuesday, 19 December 2006

December 19th

Leach's Petrel
Two dead birds were found over the weekend along Silverdale shore. Please keep a special lookout for this species if you are walking the tideline debris. The feathers are wanted for radio-isotope analysis so we can have some idea of the origin of this winter influx. Please forward any feathers to:

Dr S Votier
Marine Biology+ Ecology Research Centre
School of Biological Sciences
University of Plymouth
Drake Circus

...........but please make sure you have identified your bedraggled corpse as Leach's Petrel - the tubenose bill should help.

Heysham sightings 19/12/06
Ad and 1st W Mediterranean Gulls showing very well along the north harbour wall. The adult is ringed and the number was actually read today (or more accurately, the numbers 787 and the word 'Praha' were seen!) to make sure we ARE dealing with the same habitual bird:

Czech Republic EX78711
Ringed: Chomoutov, Olomoucky, Czech Republic Pullus 3/6/03
Seen Heysham Harbour and area 24/8/03-26/3/04
Seen Heysham harbour and area 22/7/04-9/3/05
Seen Heysham Harbour and area 20/7/05-6/3/06
Seen Heysham harbour and area 8/7/06-[19/12/06]

Still AT LEAST 20 juveniles in the SW corner of the harbour

4+ 1st W in harbour, one adult outfalls

Little Gull
One 1st W Stage 2 outfall

I was asked about Twite today by a photographer. The feeding station has ceased due to a small but persistent gang of feral pigeons eating large amounts of the food in rapid time. Bearing in mind that the maximum Twite count has only been 11 birds and draconian measures would have been needed to remove the pigeons (with no guarantee other birds would not infill), this seemed the only sensible decision. It may be possible to recommence feeding later in the winter to see if there is any early spring passage.

No moths in the trap!
18th December
No known coverage at Heysham - log will be checked on 19th.

Only interest locally = 2 Spotted Red appearing at Conder again and the 2 Bewick's Swans still in residence on the river nearby. Blackcaps seen in gardens include a ?winter record 4 together in Silverdale.