Tuesday 24 September 2013

Vis continues all day with little pulses of activity

Heysham Obs
One of those days when counting vis required the utmost concentration and that was not possible for lengthy spells due to various activities. Unfortunately we made the wrong call on the Grey Wagtail ringing and tried to conserved the large tape (only lasts three hours) and use the previously effective CD player plus accompanying MP3.  Fine for leisurely low-flyers but this morning's birds were higher and purposeful and, in association with background noise, I have never seen tapes so ineffective, notably a flock of five which were presumably listening to each other's contact calls and didn't even hesitate.

Under-recorded vis mig until about 1100hrs
Meadow Pipit - 242 SE
Grey Wagtail - 15 SE (including flocks of 4+5 which flew straight over)
Chaffinch - 19 SW
Pink-footed Goose - no over the sea observations & just one flock of 23 SE first thing
alba Wagtail - 37 SE
Siskin - heard once
Skylark - 3 SE
Swallow - just the one south
Little Egret - two purposefully south and high at 0725 (ex-Leighton roost?)

A little more than yesterday, especially on the Robin front but goodness knows how many with so many territorial birds around as well.  The 'mound' is a good indicator of the potential numbers and a few found the mist nets

Robin - 9 on the mound (all but one migrants), 4 ringed - plenty of ticking and chasing
Chiffchaff - probably three passed through by office
Goldcrest - 2 very early on then nothing.  Where on earth are the British juveniles?
Wheatear - 3 Ocean Edge area
Song Thrush - at least 4 migrants

Ocean Edge/Red Nab
Red Nab was flushed prior to the tide - this has not happened very much recently, even with the angling ban further down the seawall.  Gulls were also dispersed on the flying ant trail, very late for this activity
Med Gull - just 5 seen

The nets were pretty ineffective this morning with just 20 birds ringed and just two of the main study species, Grey Wagtail

Red-line Quaker was new for the year (3) and Flame Shoulder was late for here