Monday, 30 January 2017

2cy shag

Had about 30 minutes today most of which was spent talking to Reuben about the office which seems like it will be ready on 1st March

A surprise was 2cy shag between red bab and the loads of cormorants
feeding in the out fall channels - almost like it had been forced to one side

The rest was a bit useless; road blocked down to gate 38, two female joggers along seedy alley on the north wall, so no finches which left the model boat pond seemingly stripped of its main asset, the drake pochard

Gadwall - 7
Mallard - 5
Tufted duck 3

Friday, 27 January 2017

Cold easterly continues - for now

The cold wind was still mainly from east this morning, but starting to move more southerly now. Checked Ocen Edge salt marsh at high water.
84 Common Snipe
3 Jack Snipe
2 Reed Bunting
12 Ringed Plover

1 Skylark behind bund on foreshore was the first I've seen here this winter. Not sure if it came from salt marsh or elsewhere.

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Chilly Wind

Heysham North Harbour Wall

A visit this morning from 10.45 to 12.30 to put down more seed on the feeding area.
The finch flock paid a couple of visits to feed during that time.  Although there were no other people or cars there and no disturbance in the adjacent Centrica yard the birds were very nervous and flighty as they have often been this winter.  Although the windmill was operating in the moderate breeze the sound of the blades and generator are constant and unlikely to affect the birds.  However, as the wind direction alters slightly the windmill head yaws to face the wind - the turning mechanism does make a variety of nasty sudden noises that might upset them. When viewed from the feeding site at low level there did not appear to be any undue reflection light flashes from the blades.

Linnet - 20, approx 40% ringed
Goldfinch - 1
Robin - 1
Dunnock - 1
Feral Pigeon - 2


Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Coot join Mediterranean

Mediterranean gull still showing well on model boat pond at Middleton Nature Reserve. Also today were, to my knowledge, the first coot of 2017 for the reserve, one on the model boat pond and two on Tim Butler pond.

4 adult + 4 immature Mute swan
7 Gadwall
6 Mallard
1 Pochard (male)
5  Tufted
5 Teal
3 Coot
3 Moorhen
1 Little egret
1 Mediterranean gull

Monday, 23 January 2017

New bread med

A scoot round in the early afternoon saw:

Model boat pond
Med gull - large ad m coming to bread
Pochard - male
Tufted 4, gadwall 6, mallard 5

North wall
Linnet 18, twite 1-2. Song thrush 1, dunnock 3, starling 11

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Solitary Pochard

Presumably the same male Pochard, displaced from Middle Nature Reserve model boat pond last Saturday, has returned. But no sign of the female that was accompanying it.
Also on MNR ponds.
9 Tufted duck
7 Gadwall
6 Mallard
10 Teal

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

Another Dull Day

Heysham Nature Reserve
A low key ringing session by John this morning at the Hut feeding station caught just 21 birds:
Blue tit - 4, no retraps was surprising
Long-tailed Tit - 1 plus 4 retraps
Great Tit- 3 retraps
Chaffinch - 1 plus 1 retrap
Goldfinch - 1 plus 3 retraps
Robin - 1 retrap
Greenfinch - 2

NHWall Feeding Site
17 Linnets there mid morning with 1 Goldfinch.

23 Linnets, 1 goldfinch there on Monday 16th and on Sunday 15th there were 10 Linnet, 1 Dunnock, 1 Robin and 2 Rabbits at the seed.
No sign of any Twite and no further information on the reported flock from last Friday.


Sunday, 15 January 2017

Ratty webs

A rat was a pain today as it disturbed the heliport roost necessitating a recount and backtrack to sites already counted!  The webs was otherwise fairly routine with just a single ad med gull on fishers roof of note - presumably the Czech bird.

North Harbour Wall - low tide a.m.
No sign of Twite reported on  Friday.
On feeding area:
Linnet - 10, 3 of them wearing rings
Robin - 1
Dunnock - 1
Rabbit - 2


Anyone able to add any more to the report of 43 finches including about 30 Twite at the north wall feeder during the heavy seas and therefore saltmarsh flooding on Friday 13th please?  Thanks.

Yesterday saw the model boat pond living up to its name and the winter duck were dispersed, including the Pochard off-site somewhere and 5 of the Gadwall to the no swimming pond.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Tide miscalculation

Arrived at Ocean Edge salt marsh an hour before high tide, but the marsh was already almost completely covered. Even so a reasonable count:
Common snipe 98
Jack snipe 3
Ringed plover 3
Reed bunting 1

Model boat pond
As you were
Pochard - male and female
Tufted Duck - 5
Gadwall - 7
Little Egret - 1

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Big seagull dearth

Had about an hour to spare today and decided to scan all the likely spots for large Larids but there were hardly any including a notable zero on the model boat pond

Little gull - adult offshore
Pochard - male and female model boat pond
Gadwall - 7 mbp

Just out of the area was an ad med gull on the mudflats by the battery 

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Middleton update

A circuit of Middleton Nature Reserve late morning failed to relocate yesterday's Scaup, but Tim Butler pond is largely obscured and it could easily have been missed.
Male and female Pochard now feeding together on model boat (main) pond.
Cetti's warbler  and Water rail calling from western scrape, the former very intermittently.

Mute 4 adult + 4 immature
Tufted 6
Pochard 2
Gadwall 7
Teal 7
Mallard 6
Little egret 1
Water Rail 2
Common Snipe 1
Cetti's warbler 1

Monday, 9 January 2017

Scaup joins the fray

A few diving duck around today which were not here yesterday

Scaup - female Tim Butler pond
Pochard - female TB pond, male Model boat pond
Tufted Duck - 6 MPR, 4 TBP
Gadwall - 7 MBP
Mallard - 4 MBP
Med Gull - adult (not the Czech bird) model boat pond for a short time

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Slight increase at Middleton

4 Gadwall and 3 adult plus 1 juvenile mute were additional birds on Middleton Nature Reserve today. Although no sign of the female Pochard.
Mute 7 adult + 5 juvenile
Gadwall 11
Mallard 3
Tufted 6
Pochard 1
Teal 6
Moorhen 6
Little egret 1
Goldcrest 1

Friday, 6 January 2017

The last couple of days

Sorry for lack of postings.   The big news was a female pochard which made a brief visit earlier in the week but for the last two days has accompanied the male on the Middleton model boat pond

Secondly a colour ringed grey wagtail was traced to a juvenile ringed on 23rd Sep 2016 and is the fourth instance of one of our ringed birds remaining to winter in the area

There were 7 gadwall and five tufted duck on the model boat pond today

Thanks to Justine and malcolm for info.

Tuesday, 3 January 2017


Jammed in on Kittiwake this late morning - forgot about the IOM ferry and it just happened to be  coming in as I scanned from Ocean Edge

Kittiwake - 1 x 2CY - peeled off and went back out level with old sewer pipe

Middleton model boat pond
Decent number of gulls again with a lot of turnover - anyone with a bit of time and patience has a chance here, with everything that drops in at full frame range

Pochard - drake
Tufted Duck - 4
Gadwall - 5
Mute Swan - 2 + 4
Mallard - 6
Moorhen - 2
Little Egret - 1
Jackdaw - 2

Monday 2nd January - Ringing

Heysham Reserve
A ringing session at the hut feeding area, still limited because of access difficulties, produced the following:
Comprising only 10 new birds along with 21 retraps;
Long-tailed Tit - 6 retraps (including one ringed in 2012 and one in 2013)
Great Tit - 5 retraps
Greenfinch - 2 retraps + 5 new
Goldfinch - 1 retrap + 3 new
Blue Tit - 3 retraps
Robin - 2 retraps + 1 new
Blackbird - 2 retraps
Goldcrest - 1 new


Sunday, 1 January 2017

Happy New Year

A short visit today to cover SD36V for the 10km square survey and hope the area held something like a Snow Bunting

No such luck but a couple of half decent sightings:
Red-throated Diver - one flew out on the incoming tide
Med Gull - Czech bird did one patrol of the north wall
Linnet - 8
Great-crested Grebe - 3

Model Boat Pond
Mute Swan - bit of a battle as three extra adults were soon chased off by the resident pair and four young
Gadwall - 5
Pochard - the male makes the year list
Tufted Duck - 4
Mallard - 2
Little Egret - 1
Decent turnover of seagulls but nothing of note in 30 minutes