Friday, 4 May 2007

A foretaste of skuas to come?

Thanks John for this shot of the harbour entrance/wooden jetty

Heysham north harbour wall
0840-1040 hrs
Arctic skua dark morph 'in' 0940 hrs quite high up

Arctic tern 47 + 6 + 7+ 4 'in' then a further 22 'in' to end of outfalls [& 3 during a very short visit early morning]

Sandwich tern 4 'in'
Shag juv in harbour mouth
Swallow 3 north
Shelduck 2 'in'
Great crested grebe 'in'


Very little in the nets but 3 new Willow Warbler & 2 new Blackcap ringed. 5 Wheatear logged.


2 female Roe Deer on Middleton IE

Elsewhere in the Bay
Jenny Browns Point over the afternoon tide
Unless we hear differently, there were no observers at Heysham after 1040hrs.
JBP was faced with horrendous light conditions and the following reflects the admirable caution of the 5 observers

Skua spp: A flock of NINE was watched for some time in both flight and on the sea. However, they were at extreme range in very poor light and there was no evidence that these birds were interested in attempting an overland crossing and they were last seen floating out of the Bay. Conditions were very murky over the Pennines.
Skua spp, probably Bonxie: A large compact individual seen, again in silhoeutte but almost certainly a Bonxie
Arctic Tern: 126 comprising three flocks in rapid transit (1 via the Kent, two via the Keer) were obviously in addition to the Heysham birds

See below & LDBWS website (& Simon's link) for brilliant Dotterel pics from a trip of FIVE which was on Ward's Stone during at least the morning but not late afternoon unless the single observer did not look far enough over to the north-east of the plateau. The birds were last seen just below the pile of stones on the N/E perimeter of the plateau about half way between the two trig points i.e. hard to find.

One of 5 Dotterel on Ward's Stone. Thanks Simon

In total contrast, an escaped adult Night Heron was in Lancaster below the scaffolded footbridge between Freehold and the St Leonardsgate car park area (access via De Vitre street). This bird was almost certainly seen in Northallerton in January. Pics on LDBWS site.