Friday 22 September 2023

A change of menu

The wind started in the west then freshened as it moved to NW. Showers on and off all day, some heavy, but some sunshine in between.

South Shore
Morning report from Pete:
Black Tern - Three Juvenile still seaward end Heysham one outfall 
Common tern at least 1
Mediterranean Gull 11 or so flying about in the area

I checked on the rising tide in the afternoon (MD).
There were still 3 Black Terns, one on No.1 outflow and two on No.2 outflow.
This is the bird on No.1 outflow. A nice size comparison with the Black-Headed Gull
which is actually just beyond the Black Tern

Black Terns on No.2 outflow
They kept dropping down to the water but I couldn't see them pick anything up.
The only other tern was a 2nd calendar year Common. That was feeding closer in. It too dipped to the water and appeared to come up empty billed. But in fact it had quite a decent sized shrimp. Shrimps are naturally translucent.
Not easy to see, but this Common Tern has a shrimp. No Whitebait seen caught today.
Hopefully the shrimps will maintain the Black Tern's interest 

Guillemot still in the harbour 

Along the foreshore 
Goldfinch 11
Linnet 4 - plus 35 on the saltmarsh 
Rock Pipit 3
Wheatear 3

I walked out to the waterline to check the waders, just in time for a Peregrine Falcon to lift them all. Half went south the other half just in front of the saltmarsh, so I had to walk back!
Of the birds that returned to the saltmarsh:
Bar-Tailed Godwit 48
Grey Plover 58
And at least 2,000 each, Knot and Dunlin
They were still very flighty, these are just a few of them.

Mainly Knot (this would make a good jigsaw!)

Knot and Dunlin
Pink-Footed Goose 97 south in 3 skeins
Swallow 1 north into the wind

Two Kestrels hovering over Heysham Head today - ref Janet