Wednesday 15 September 2010

Marginal wind direction persists for long enough....

So near...........or eyesight not good enough/looking in the wrong direction...........this was taken from the Walney Obs Blog this morning:  "The pick of the day’s sightings was a Sooty Shearwater that flew out of Morecambe Bay at 0855hrs". In good conditions you can see seagulls sat on the pier hide at Walney and easily read Barrow Town Hall clock  (never seen a Sooty from anywhere along the eastern Irish sea coastline other than north Cornwall (and from the Stranraer-Larne ferry))

Heysham Obs
Unfortunately could not get on site until 0700hrs with four Leach's Petrel on the first scan.  Reasonable selection but a bit tedious during the last two hours of the morning session dropping tide with effort wrongly focused on birds coming out of the bay rather than looking towards the outer bay for those cutting across.  When this happened (c0920hrs), two seen straight away.  The afternoon Leach's Petrels were a real bonus for the multiple observers with most forecasts going for the wind turning NW just after midday

North harbour wall 0700-1000 & IOM ferry lunchtime & short mid-afternoon visit
Leach's Petrel - 10 first session, one distantly lunchtime, one 1405 - all 'out', then four others until the wind went NW at about 1630hrs [total 16]
Arctic Skua - 2 juvs (plus small skua spp, almost certainly this species) early morning, then juv out at 1630hrs
Bonxie - 1 out 0710hrs, another out at 1735hrs
Black Tern - one around ferry in harbour mouth, then flew behind wooden jetty
Common Tern - one adult around ferry
Gannet - 4 early am, two 2CY behind ferry, ad & juv later in afternoon
Razorbill - one mid-afternoon
Fulmar - 1
Kittiwake - 4 (3 juvs) & c15 around harbour/behind ferry
Arctic Tern - 3 juvs early am & 5 juvs outfalls/around ferry
Sandwich Tern - 2 juvs early am, adult around ferry, one mid-afternoon
Guillemot - one on sea, two on sea at lunchtime
Shag - mobile 1CY in the harbour
Med Gull - 1CY & two adults patrolling the seawall, two further adults on Red Nab
Little Gull - adult stage 2 outfall mid-pm
Pink-footed Goose - flocks of 19+45+50 SW mid afternoon (first of autumn)

** What was almost certainly a juvenile Long-tailed Skua was seen by a very experienced observer late yesterday evening, but too far out and not all the features were clinched to his high standards of documentation