The observatory was set up in 1980. It involves ringing,'vis mig' counts (including seabirds) and general monitoring in the Heysham Nature reserve/power stations/harbour area. The statutory moth trap is in place and also a daily log for butterflies, dragonflies etc.
We share an office, kindly provided by EDF Energy, with the County Wildlife Trust. This is located next to the Nature Reserve car park. Do call in. Please leave sightings in the letterbox, ESPECIALLY 'fly-by' seabirds.
The wind was mainly SSE. Light rain on and off all day.
Jack Snipe at least 5 on foreshore between Red Nab and the saltmarsh. Long before high water (ref Pete).
Heysham Skeer - low water 08:10
Eider 28 close in, more further out
Wigeon 1 - not regular here
Great Crested grebe 6
Red-breasted Merganser 1
Little Egret 4
The Brent Geese did not come over to feed in the corner today - perhaps tomorrow
The honeycomb worm colonies that formed this year, when the skeer was stripped of its seed mussels by the early summer storms, are now eroding. The low beds are now providing opportunities for the waders to feed, in the diminished crevices.
This picture shows a portion of the new low beds.
A more mature colony can be seen top right.
This clip shows Knot coming in to feed on these low beds
Unfortunately, unless this first season growth is stripped by winter storms, the colony will consolidate next year. The only birds that regularly feed on the mature colonies appear to be Carrion Crow
Middleton Nature Reserve
Not actually checked today. This video is from yesterday, it demonstrates the change in behaviour of the three male Shoveller, with the arrival of a female. The dominant male was keeping the other males well away from the female (she enters stage left).
The background noise is the rain!
The Norwegian ringed Oystercatcher is still being regularly seen on the cricket field (ref Janet)