Monday, 8 November 2021

A good all round day topped with a Snow Bunting!

SE breeze, very low cloud early on with some drizzle. A few light showers during the day.

Middleton Nature Reserve 
Report from Alan:

It seemed like an Autumn Thrush type of morning with almost calm but damp air when I arrived at Middleton in the dark - it turned out that it was when John and I set nets. The breeze got up from the south later with fine drizzle for 30 minutes or so from 09.00. A total of 42 birds captured, of which 19 were Redwings.

Wren 1 + 3 retraps

Blackbird 2

Song Thrush 1

Redwing 19

Cetti's Warbler 3 retraps (one of these was first ringed here 22/10/2018)

Chiffchaff 1

Goldcrest 5 + 1 retrap

Long-tailed Tit 1 retrap

Great Tit 2

Chaffinch 1

Lesser Redpoll 1

Bullfinch 1

Pink Footed Geese - large numbers moving NE to feeding areas early on

Fieldfare - at least 30 in one flock flying eastwards.

Redwing - at least 244 moving west to east during the first part of the morning then twos and threes around the reserve feeding on Hawthorn berries (which are abundant here this season).

I just did a quick check of  the main ponds mid morning:

Mute unchanged 

Moorhen 7

Mallard 8

Gadwall 30

Little grebe 2 (one each pond)

Even with the "no swimming" pond water level being back to normal, the Gadwall can only just reach the weed they feed on. No wonder they moved elsewhere when the water was deeper. All the birds were upending to feed today.

Heysham skear mid morning (MD)

A check 1.5 hours after low water meant that the tide was rushing in and many waders already moved on. But some of the diving birds come in closer.

Eider only 38 seen but they were in the far channel and many could have been out of sight.

Red-breasted Merganser 2 (pair)

Great Crested Grebe 12

Little Egret 19

Oystercatcher c200

Turnstone c30

Redshank c30

Curlew 10

Knot - none on the skear but c40 over from north to south.

Ringed Plover 17 

Heliport area

Report from Pete:
Snow Bunting 1 male - seen by Jean on the sparse vegetation  at the top of heliport seawall but lost it when it flew seemingly out to sea
Rock Pipit 3
Greenfinch 65

Red Nab and saltmarsh (MD)
Just a brief check at high water
Chiffchaff 1 near nature park pond
Wigeon 56 out from saltmarsh 
Rock Pipit 3
Reed Bunting 1
Song Thrush 2 on saltmarsh 
Jack Snipe 2 - flushed by dog walking along saltmarsh water's edge. Both birds landed back on other sections of saltmarsh, providing the typical selection of blurry pictures!