The observatory was set up in 1980. It involves ringing,'vis mig' counts (including seabirds) and general monitoring in the Heysham Nature reserve/power stations/harbour area. The statutory moth trap is in place and also a daily log for butterflies, dragonflies etc.
We share an office, kindly provided by EDF Energy, with the County Wildlife Trust. This is located next to the Nature Reserve car park. Do call in. Please leave sightings in the letterbox, ESPECIALLY 'fly-by' seabirds.
Saturday, 6 April 2019
Black Redstart highlights but yet another Spoonbill passes us by!
Unfortunately made a mess of a singing Black Redstart as regards record photography this morning, but it was a welcome visitor on the fences and picnic tables for about 12 or so minutes 0740 onwards before suddenly flying low and fast up the hill towards the Old Obs tower site and not seen again. Reports also came in of a mid-morning Spoonbill arrival at Leighton Moss - we have never seen one in our airspace, the implication being they arrive from height and drop in situ
Also arrived a bit too late on a sunny and clear morning for mist-netting - these mornings are all about a small rush of birds during pre-sunrise and not a lot thereafter - we were lucky with the Black Redstart. This was reflected on quite a few off-passage phylloscs and a couple of new-in Blackcaps on Middleton
Very good passage of Meadow Pipit on two defined lines either side of the power station
Vis mig and associated (impression that the gulls were on the move)
Common Gull - increase to absolute minimum of 287, mainly 2CY
Black-headed Gull - 35
Med Gull - two 2CY behaving like a pair of teenagers
Meadow Pipit - absolute minimum of 375 NE and another 56 grounded OE football pitch
Tree pipit - one prob two NE (IOY and quite early)
Sand Martin - 7 NE
Jay - very unexpected noisy flock of 7!!!
Swallow - 4 NE
alba Wagtail - 16 NE
Linnet - 9 NE
Goldfinch - 23 NE
No seabirds as such with tight flock of white birds in the murk quite possibly just BHG
Guillemot in harbour in the evening.
Black Redstart - singing 2CY male as above Rock pipit - 2 on south wall
Blackcap - 2
Willow Warbler - 3
WW/CC - c15
Chiffchaff - further increase of singing birds
Sparrowhawk - 2 high migrants NE (local male out of the pylon copse)
Blackbird - a long-winged male being chased by a local male (not a RO!)
Knot - 6,000 about to come into the heliport sub-roost area when targeted by Peregrine and flew south as a spectacular swirling mass
Cetti's Warbler - 3 singing males Middleton, probably just one wide-ranging singing male north end Hey NR
Mute Swan - 3 pairs sitting Middleton
Teal - 4
Little Grebe - 1
Common Snipe 1
Middleton butterflies (lots for a morning session)
Speckled wood 1