Monday, 22 March 2010

seasonal subtleties at a local patch

Heysham Obs
A lot of birders do seem to miss out on a sizeable seasonal chunk of their hobby from about now until mid-May.  Lack of knowledge and awareness of migrating passerines, especially translating flight calls to the actual species, is a skeleton in the closet for many people who see themselves as birders who have reached a 'reasonable standard'  

In this respect, we will be offering a tuition session on vis mig to hopefully also coincide with some spring seabird passage.  Last year's was very successful, providing good variety, if not quantity.

Saturday 1st May  0700-1000  Meet Heysham Nature reserve car park SD407599 at 0700
...............or drive straight to the north harbour wall from 0700 or earlier if you want to do some watching yourself cSD400604.  This date has been chosen to coincide with the sometimes spectacular Arctic Tern passage, the author's favourite part of the birding calender in the North Lancashire area

Please park on the two-way section of the north harbour wall road and avoid 'cluttering up' the single section around the metal gate.   Please contact 07989866487 or or 07815979856 or for further details.  Thanks.

North harbour wall 0745-0900
Meadow Pipit - 110 north, later 27 north in 10 minutes (1050-1100hrs)
alba Wagtail - 18 north
Linnet - 7 north
Goldfinch - 16 north
Purple Sandpiper - one on the rocks below the red lighthouse (hard to see!)
Twite - 56, but flew off before rings could be examined
Common Gull - 18 2CY on seaward end Heysham 2 outfall
Herring Gull - influx of 2CY with c230 inshore & offshore
Red-throated Diver - 2 sp birds in, gaining height
Gannet - 5 adults in
Pink-footed Goose - 5 north
Nothing obvious on the sea, other than distant Eider to the north

Ocean Edge side
Zero of interest other than a Linnet 'in-off' and 8 "swans" out in the murk heading NW - proportions (and common sense) suggested Whooper but not seen well enough.

Ringing recovery
Interesting Twite double-control just received:

Ringed:  X292004 3F 16.11.08 Southport

Caught by ringer:  4F 01.07.09 Sanda Island, off Mull of Kintyre (Strathclyde)
Caught by ringer again: 4F 28.10.09 Heysham north wall 46 km

Middleton IE
8 Tufted Duck, 3 Goldeneye, 4 trilling Little Grebe, 3 Teal, 2 Snipe and a singing Linnet which I think was a vis bird having a rest.  10 Meadow Pipit north (1545-1645).