Thursday, 7 May 2015

Gadwall take the mickey

Heysham Obs
Two Gadwall in their wisdom decided that it would be a good idea to fly into the Bay hugging the sea heading straight for me.  Two blackish ducks looking too small to be Eider (4+ miles) - surely Common Scoter at last - flashes of white but definitely 'all dark' (2+ miles) - mmmm! then the reality as they swung laterally and headed inland.  Never seen Gadwall from here on a seawatch before, but they are an everyday occurrence on the Middleton part of the Patchwork challenge.  The rest of the seawatch highlights were also 'been there, done it' for this year, even the often annually tricky Brent Geese

North harbour wall 0850-1000ish
Arctic Skua - dark morph seen heading 'in' far offshore before it seemed to land on the sea (0900)
Dark-bellied Brent Goose - two headed in close inshore at 0936hrs
Swallow - 18 in
Gadwall - see above - two males?
Sand Martin - 1 in
Meadow Pipit - I NE (very late)
Med Gull - 2CY on outfalls
Dunlin - 150 out
an earlier seawatch recorded at least one Sandwich Tern but no details yet and there may be more from Phil, who watched for a further hour from 1000.

Ocean Edge/Red Nab
Interestingly (or not!), there were no Curlew on the wind and rain-swept mudflats yesterday morning, yet in more gentle conditions today there were 17 scattered around off Red Nab
Oystercatcher - 490 Red Nab just before high tide
Common Gull - 188 (two adult)
Black-headed Gull - 86 (more than yesterday)
Little Egret - 3 around
Dunlin - 68 roosting on Red Nab two hours before high tide
Whimbrel - 3 as above
Wheatear - 11
White Wagtail - 3

Heysham Skeer
Knot - a murmuration of about 900 or so at 0500hrs as reported by a local fisherman

Brown House Moth the only capture summing up recent mothing times!