Wednesday, 10 November 2021

Mmm........somewhat better!

Calm first thing with light SW breeze developing later. Overcast all day but it remained dry after some early morning drizzle.

Middleton Nature Reserve 
Ringing report from John

Not quite the weather I anticipated this morning.

Heavy drizzle when I left home, and still light drizzle for a period, at Middleton before two nets were set.

Disappointing catch with only ten birds caught, but did include two new Cettis Warblers. 

Other birds comprised:

Redwing x 4

Goldcrest x2

Blackbird x 1 retrap

Blue Tit x 1

I just did a quick check of the main ponds late morning (MD)
Still 30 Gadwall, but now joined by a male Tufted.
Male Tufted with Gadwall

Heysham skear - low water 09:30
Pale-bellied Brent Goose 12 - the only other low tide this winter where Brent have been seen in the skear SE corner was 1st November. Then low water was 2.4m, today it was 2.3m. These 10 were in the corner where the sparse sea lettuce is growing, at 10:00.

Shaun was also checking from the shore, he managed an additional 2 feeding separately. Later (10:47) as the tide covered the sea lettuce all twelve flew together, to the west of the skear and landed on the water. 
Tomorrow's tide is 2.8m at 10:30 low water. Similar weather conditions so is worth a look.

A small dark duck drifted in with the tide, till it reached the skear, then it started diving.
The small duck on the left with Eider and a Cormorant for size comparison 

This is it drifting in 

And this is it diving, sorry about the occasional loss of focus.
Pete managed to identify it with stills from these clips as a juvenile Common Scoter.

Great Crested Grebe 15
Eider 75 (this is Shaun's figure, I managed 67, which is pretty close for me, it shows the advantage of counting on flat seas)
Little Egret 7
Oystercatcher c750
Ringed Plover 45 on inner skear
No Knot
Not many Curlew, Turnstone and Redshank.

Shag 1 juvenile spotted by Shaun trying to oust the cormorants from conger rock.

Red Nab and saltmarsh area 
Just a quick check towards high water
Wigeon 135 on Red Nab
Shelduck 97 out from saltmarsh - these are just some of the Shelduck 

Greenfinch at least 17 around the saltmarsh edges
Great White Egret 1 high to NW 14:30

Finally, this shot is from this morning's walk on the skear. It was an interesting walk in terms of birds seen, but I would have enjoyed it anyway. I like it on the skear in all conditions, but flat calm and overcast produces a unique beauty (MD).
The view north from the skear this morning.