Thursday 7 January 2021

Brent numbers higher as tides get lower

Another heavy overnight frost with mist till mid morning. Some sunshine later in the morning with light rain in the afternoon.

Just a quick check of the skeer corner at 10:30 located 34 Pale-bellied Brent geese feeding, including the two colour ringed Canadian birds.
This shot shows the inner skeer in the background and the geese feeding on the weed in the middle. In the foreground you can see the drain water continuing down to the sea. This is draining sea water from the inner skeer, but also includes fresh water which seeps onto the shore where it meets the clay boundary. This makes this drain brackish, which the gut weed favours. There are similar outlets of surface water out from the children's play area (focused on the low lying horse field behind), Half Moon Bay and Red Nab. All have growths of gut weed and all have been regularly used as feeding areas by Brent geese.
This clip shows the drain and associated weed a bit more clearly.
I didn't go on the skeer today, looking out from the shore located:
Eider c60
Red-breasted Merganser 2
I left the Brent feeding, but, as yesterday at 10:50 the bulk of them (30) stopped feeding and flew to the water. There was nothing obvious around to have spooked them.
The tides start to get higher again, after tomorrow.

On the way home I just had a quick look at the "no swimming" pond at Middleton.
The multitude of swans, ducks etc are maintaining the open area of free water. Two bits of good news:
The Gadwall seem to becoming more tolerant of the swan feeders, particularly when they feed from high on the east bank, as was happening on this visit.
At least one of the Little grebe is still around.
This clip shows the Little grebe and some of the Gadwall, but it's mainly so you can hear the commotion made by the gulls and Carrion Crow as they strive for a share of the bread being fed.
Mute swan 2 adult 3+1 juvenile 
Moorhen 2
Coot 4
Mallard 4
Gadwall 16
Little Grebe 1