Friday, 15 November 2013

The migratory curtain is drawn?

Heysham obs
Plenty of continental Blackbirds on Heysham nr and Middleton today but not many on the dog walk area. Very little vis as a quite thick layer of cloud at dawn. A flock of 13 twite may have been a migratory arrival as the ringed birds included at least three new for the autumn, including an old Machrihanish bird

The wader murmurations
off ocean edge and Shorefields were brilliant this morning - far more interesting than similar starling monoculture at a well known reserve!

Vis mig dawn to 0830
Chaffinch - 16
Goldfinch - 5
Redwing - 1
Alba wagtail - 1 def not ex roost
Greenfinch - 5

Blackbird - 25 or so by office, plenty on Middleton
Song thrush - 3

The following is from Malcolm and refers to Middleton NR:
Saw cormorant flying from West directly to boating pond. Thought it was strange, as I thought there was no fish there, but this seemed to be a deliberate expedition. In less than a minute of it starting to feed it came up with a largish (about 3oz) fish. From the marked contrast between back and belly and general shape I am pretty sure it was a perch. The main food item for perch this size is insect larvae!
To catch a fish this size so quickly, and apparently regularly, must mean there is a significant population.

Other sightings:
Mute 3 + 7 cygnets
Coot 2
Moorhen 13 (mainly Tim Butler)
Tufted 4
Gadwall 4 (3 male)
Teal maximum count 60 but there were others (mainly Tim Butler)
Little egret 3 (2 on boating pond one over SW to NW)
Snipe 7
Bullfinch one feeding group of 7
No thrushes but lots of blackbirds. And we seem to have a full contingent of robins.