Tuesday 17 May 2022

Lighthouse Rock Pipits feeding young in nest

Light SE wind, high cloud with plenty of sunshine and the odd light shower

Nothing moving on the sea this morning, Pete had a single "Cabbage White" trundle past in an hour's check!

Heysham skear - low water 07:25 (MD)
I watched the tide come in and cover the outer skears. If there are any feeding waders on the outer skears, they often fly to the inner skear before moving on. But the only waders today, apart from the Oystercatcher, was a single Whimbrel and a Bar-Tailed Godwit, still in winter plumage. This is the Godwit, it doesn't matter how long your bill is, it isn't always quite long enough.
Little Egret 6
Grey Heron 1
Eider 36
Great Crested Grebe 5
Herring gulls - are still harvesting the seed mussels, strange that the Lesser Blacked-Backed gulls don't bother with the seed mussels, there are some around, but only feeding on crabs or dropping large mussels to open them. I took this clip of the Herring gulls as the outer skear was being covered. The clip was slightly longer originally, I counted 1,700 gulls on it and many had already flown off and many more were on the sea at either side of me, so at very least 2,000 birds.
The foreground birds are on the middle skear, the background birds being pushed off the outer skear.

Heysham Head 
Just a quick check on the way home, really to see how the previously territorial Rock Pipits were doing. Unusually, I didn't see any, but suspect that they were around somewhere.
Swift 3 feeding over the wood.
Swift - I don't often get an half decent shot of a swift (MD)

South shore late afternoon 
Wheatear 1 on saltmarsh 
Whimbrel 1 on Red Nab
Rock Pipit 3. The Red Nab bird was feeding and appeared to take food into the Power Station grounds.
Both the lighthouse birds were taking food to the nest.
This is the female, just above the nest site, but she will never fly to it 
when she knows she is being watched.

This is the male, you can't see it on this shot, but this is the ringed bird.
Unfortunately, he was limping. Hopefully just something temporary, but I
suspect it the same problem developing that the other lame bird has. (MD)

In this clip, I am sat on the low wall next to the lighthouse, looking back to the wooden frame over the steps. The male leaves the nest hole carrying a faecal sac. I then pan out to show the location of the hole.

If you go to watch them feed their young, please give them plenty of space, certainly 
no closer than this, I was sat on the lighthouse wall, almost behind the lighthouse.