The day was rescued spectacularly by the return of the adult Bonaparte's Gull in resplendent full winter plumage with all the requisite moult completed. The sequence involved a scan of Heysham Two from Ocean Edge, glimpses of promise on a flying bird just beyond the small Heysham 2 jetty facing away into the wind (notably underwing), followed by a power walk down the seawall and a geriatric, wind-assisted 'run' back to the car when realised had forgotten mobile. The tide was dropping quite rapidly and unfortunately I wasn't sure which direction it moved off the outfalls. Are Morecambe promenade observers missing a trick or is it simply feeding offshore and came in today because of rough seas? The gull flocks the other way on the Lune estuary have certainly been grilled but what about Morecambe prom? Who is there?
5 or so degrees north-west of forecast therefore birdless as regards seabird movement. Go away Walney!..........blocking any chance of any seabirds in a wind which was always marginal, the majority forecast of due west always looked unconvincing in relation to the pressure chart and so it proved. As it happened we may have missed an early morning Leach's Petrel or two as there was no-one here until 0800hrs and one flew out of the bay past Rossall at 0810hrs.
Sea/inshore (just 'our' long-stayers apart from the Gannet)
Gannet - one out
Med Gull - 8 1CY, 3 2CY, 4 Ad Red Nab to & including the harbour (10 of these behind the IOM ferry)
Kittiwake - adult stage 2 outfall briefly
Little Gull - ad type Red Nab area
Bonaparte's Gull - Heysham 2 outfall mid-morning
Leach's Petrel - one was reported as flying close inshore past the north harbour wall at about 1130hrs and another was offshore in the evening
Red-throated Diver - first of autumn - thanks Ian
Three Carrion Crows and a Meadow Pipit flew south whilst walking from car to office.
Included Frosted Orange which is not very common here with the others comprising Pink-barred Sallow, Acleris emargana, Treble Bar, Rosy Rustic