Monday, 21 January 2008

Pomarine skua surprise

Heysham Obs
A routine Kittiwake check in the turbulence behind the IOM passenger ferry as it negotiates the right angle turn into the harbour was interrupted by a juvenile Pom. Skua flying 'out' just beyond the turbulence. This was observed until it disappeared behind the end of the wooden jetty, offering lateral views as it passed the middle gap and then tail-end views as it passed the inner gap. The blunt central tail projections were surprisingly obvious. The downside was that it didnt count for SD36V! As regards the immediate origin of this bird, there is quite a history of birds following the ferry into the Bay, then overtaking it as it slows down and flying further into the Bay before turning round. The timing suggests this was the most likely explanation for its presence, especially as it was too murky to observe what was going on behind the ferry until it had almost reached port.

North harbour wall
Juv Pomarine Skua out (1215-1218hrs)
Kittiwake - 13 behind the IOM ferry (4 x 1st W)
Med Gull - 2nd W patrolling the north wall
Purple Sandpiper - 2 roosting on a low tier of the central section of the wooden jetty with Turnstone

Single Purple Sandpiper by Morecambe Stone Jetty