Saturday 14 April 2012

Difficult day to assess

Heysham Obs
On my own initially this morning and the alarm clock failed!  Therefore missed a good hour of clear dawn weather with little wind.  Past experience of clear conditions suggests that this can be too late for Willow Warblers around the core trapping area.  Therefore arrival at 0620 revealed nothing and the two nets set just after the breeze started to make itself felt also failed to produce any night migrants, just  couple of Lesser Redpoll before the wind became too strong.  Observations then ceased.  However, other observers covering Middleton recorded a large number of singing male Willow Warblers - at 20-25, far in excess of the low single-figures breeding population.  So were these dawn birds or did the strengthening north-easterly drop these birds after coverage 'ceased' around the office area?  See what Walney posts later on?

Sea 0650-0710
Sandwich Tern - 21 'in', subsequently up to 13 on buoys, then down to 3 by lunchtime
Common Scoter - distant flock of c17 'out'
Kittiwake - flock of 12 on the water, then 'in'
Diver spp - one very distant in the 'heat' haze

Vis mig
Meadow Pipit - probably c100 during the morning, possibly more as birds were very high
alba Wagtail - 15 north
Goldfinch - c30 north
Linnet - c15 north plus 30-40 Middleton
Swallow - at least 17 N/NE
Siskin - one north, then flock of 10, thought to be this species, north over Middleton
Lesser Redpoll - 4 north (2 ringed)

Purple Sandpiper on the rocks below the north wall at midday

No Grasshopper Warblers singing on Middleton

Just located this pic on the inbox - a year too late for the Atlas dot - at the small gorse bush in the land-starved SD36
Thanks for this, Pete