Monday, 26 September 2022

A bit of a boat day

The very strong overnight NW wind soon eased, although it remained quite strong all day. Some showers and sunny spells 

South shore
I had a walk along the wall early on as the tide was starting to rise (MD)
Lots of small stuff on saltmarsh and Ocean Edge field.
Linnet 20+
Greenfinch 8
Pied Wagtail 35 - there are always some here but there was a lot today, presumably ex Power Station roost.
Shelduck 26 resting on mud
Eider 3 feeding in the harbour mouth. They catch quite large crabs here (don't read on if you are squeamish). Their technique is to hold the crab by one claw and shake it till it breaks of. They then grab the other claw and repeat. When declawed, it is swallowed "whole".

Mediterranean gulls 4 adults feeding on the Sandmason worms on the beach near the wooden jetty. The only ringed bird was metal ringed only. They and c10 Black-Headed gulls were catching worms, but only quite small ones. This is the metal ringed bird catching a small worm and chasing a BHG off its patch.

Rock Pipits 2 including one that appears to be holding territory near the lighthouse - not the previous territory holder which was ringed.
Rock Pipit on sloping wall near lighthouse 

I was just about to head back when I noticed the SeaTruck heading in. I checked its wake and there was a cloud of gulls following it.

About 5 minutes out, so I decided to wait. But it stopped, turned and started heading away again!

Strange, I've only ever seen them do this when the tide is running in fast and the wind is driving them in too, so a risk of overshooting. But the tide had only just started to come in and would not be running quickly, and the wind was against them.
This is part of what today's title refers to, although I've used "artistic license". All today's boats are actually ships!
The ship in the distance is moored outside the shipping lane and has been for a while, surplus to current requirements and cheaper than a berth in the harbour. So I thought the Seatruck was going to moor there too. But when I checked from the shore at high water, I couldn't see either ship.

Janet had a walk along the wall at high water and took these shots:
Dunlin and Ringed Plover
The Eider were still milling around the harbour entrance 
But not feeding now, the water is deep at high water

I couldn't resist a quick look as the tide reached the saltmarsh (MD) There were plenty of waders being driven quickly south towards Potts corner, and wave after wave of others flying from the north towards Potts/Lune estuary. The birds still within the recording area were mainly Knot, Dunlin, Grey Plover and Redshank. 
Juvenile Grey Plover left, adult right

I was sitting on a rock watching the breaking waves when the SeaCat was approaching the harbour. Even at this range, with the wind blowing and the waves crashing I could still hear its roar. But not really hear, more sense, like a loud bass line resonates in your chest. In this clip it is still on full power as can be seen by its wake. You can't "hear" it in this clip.

Just after this clip it throttles back for its approach to the harbour. This shot shows the much reduced wake. The building just before it is Barrow Shipworks.
SeaCat approaching the harbour - it's a lot further away than it looks!

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