Sunday, 8 February 2015

Fog and ringless Cettis

Heysham Obs
The fog relented just long enough to get the webs done and the reward was a new species for the patchwork challenge, albeit the lower end of the points scale - black-tailed godwit 

Here are the Grey Wagtail details for the bird seen this morning at Crook of Lune, Caton, 15km or so to the north-east.  This is the first record from the Lune valley, as opposed to Lancaster or south of on the estuarine part of the river:

Y966256  P/M:DKG/R
Ringed:  Heysham NR          Juvenile                   15/09/2012
Seen:  Crook of Lune   08/02/2015     Photo Jean Roberts

I was a bit puzzled yesterday as inconclusive glimpses of the right leg on the Cetti's appeared to indicate there was no ring.  Brilliant views this morning behind the dipping pond- should have taken camera - indicated quite clearly it was un-ringed.  I suspect this isn't a two-bird theory, but the brief view of what appeared to be a right leg ring on the first day was clearly staining of some sort.  This, of course means it is definitely a different bird from the two Middleton and single Heysham records last autumn.   In close proximity to a Wren for quite a time and the two completely ignored each other!

Interesting how this species is getting treated now.  It doesn't qualify for the regional RBA, it's relegated to un-highlighted status on the Fleetwood and Fylde websites (but still worthy of individual daily mention) and it's about to come off the 'county description list'.  A bit of an also-ran at Leighton where presumably all the locals have already year-ticked it (song only??).  On the other hand it is Aldcliffe's "most wanted", its still a mega in Cumbria, it hasn't even turned up at Haweswater (Silverdale) yet and I think it is still a bit of a celebrity at Brockholes despite being 'down south' (or should that be the western outpost of East Lancs for regional year listing purposes?).   In other words, not to be taken for granted yet and no apologies for getting a bit excited about our first winter record.
Quite severe freezing fog this morning and still nowhere near cleared - no chance of WeBS count unless it improves, even with my 'inshore' (as opposed to salt marsh edge) roosts

Male Chaffinch giving the vaguely Chiffchaff - like contact call this morning as they do when setting up territories.  Otherwise, predictably not as much singing this morning but the Great-spotted Woodpeckers were active with a lot of calling and drumming