Sunday, 15 July 2007

Giant Hogweed Twitch

Heysham Obs
Wooden jetty/harbour/outfalls
More water sports than birds but the key species were still in place:

Black Guillemot: Pair on the wooden jetty chasing off a feral pigeon
Shag: Two juvs in the harbour
Med Gull: 1st S briefly on Red Nab

This 23rd June picture, presumably of the female, shows a faint line of dark feather tips 'bisecting' the white wing patch indicating it might be a 1st summer. Anyone closely studied this bird recently? Thanks Gavin.

Middleton IE
Three Common Sandpiper on the model boat pond

A ringing session revealed that 'all' the local Sedge and a majority of the Grasshopper Warbler had left the site to be replaced, in the case of Sedge Warbler, by a trickle of passage birds (mainly adults). Reed Warbler was confirmed to breed with capture of a female with brood patch, two singing males early on and a fairly recently fledged juvenile.
Retrap juvenile Grasshopper Warbler. Thanks Mark

Highlights were: an unringed adult (and one retrap juvenile)Grasshopper Warbler, 11 Sedge Warbler, 5 Reed Bunting, 7 Whitethroat, one Lesser Whitethroat, 2 unringed (and one ringed male) Reed Warbler.

The Red-eared Terrapin was in the model boat pond

Dragonfly numbers on Middleton IE were predictably poor despite a fairly lengthy 'window' of sunshine and c20C over lunchtime. 7 male and 4 female Black-tailed Skimmer, just 4 male and 3 female Emperor, just one 4-spotted Chaser, one Brown Hawker and 40-50 Common Darter (about half being tenerals). No Ruddy Darter (or predictably any remaining Red-veined Darter).

Butterflies at Middleton were even worse with just TWO Meadow Brown seen in perfect conditions and practically nothing else viz 2 Small White and two newly-emerged Small Tortoiseshell

Eagle-owl huggers and other fans of well 'ard alien fauna and flora might be interested to know there is a veritable forest of Giant Hogweed next to the large 'nissan hut' on the opposite side of the road to Middleton IE

Perhaps the most important record from a LDBWS point of view was a singing male Corn Bunting between Lighthouse Cottage and Cockersands Abbey

Two adult Pectoral Sandpipers on the Allen pool until lunchtime when they headed off to the northeast. They returned to the Allen Pool just before dusk (feeding on Warton floods or Hare Tarn or even Barrow Scout??). Spoonbill & Little Egret in same area. Yellow-legged Gull still on Lune Estuary. Adult (unringed) Med Gull and Sandwich Tern by Morecambe Battery. A Spotted Crake calling at a site in the area was listened for last night in favourable conditions and is now presumed to have gone [not heard for a week: this record was not released to 'selected birders' whilst it was known to be still present and was only recorded by people monitoring the site]