Wednesday 3 January 2024

Slavonian Grebe on the water and gutweed thin on the ground.

Just one mid morning shower, otherwise dry. A light SW wind.

Slavonian Grebe 1 reported "off Heysham" on the incoming tide at 13:00 - more details awaited.

North shore (MD)
We're back to neap tides, so low water was only 2.9m, barely enough to uncover the inner skear. So I had a walk out at low water, which at 10:00 nicely coincided with the only shower of the day (and it was a heavy one!). Fortunately it stopped by the time I'd reached the skear corner. There is no gutweed at all near the corner. The only available weed for the Brent geese on this side is close to the promenade near the play area. 
Pale-bellied Brent goose 45 at least. These are some of them arriving.
There were already some feeding here, and they were joined by another three, which proved to be the two adult Canadian ringed birds and a first winter.
They would rather not feed this close to the promenade, last year when there was much more gutweed everywhere they never ventured so close, whereas the year before they ended up even closer to the promenade.
Even so, there wasn't a lot of gutweed where they were feeding today, they will soon have to move in closer or find another location.

Shelduck 7 south
Wigeon 17 north
Eider 14 feeding
Red-breasted Merganser 1 male
Great Crested Grebe 1
Oystercatcher c500
Curlew 20
Knot 250
Turnstone 2

This "lazy fox" on the Barrows couldn't even be bothered to watch Janet.
(Shame there wasn't a "quick brown dog to jump over it"!

Middleton Nature Reserve (JP)
Just a short potter around

Tufted Duck (drake) and Moorhen

South shore (MD)
Just a walk along the sea wall towards the afternoon high water.
Pale-bellied Brent on Red Nab - similar numbers to the north side this morning, the good thing about neap tides for them is that they are not high enough to flush them off Red Nab
Shag 1 immature on the wooden jetty. Even at this range they are recognisable, but not often so mobile. The Shag is bottom centre at the start of this clip.

Pink-Footed goose 1 probably injured and Eider 1 dozing, drifted along the sea wall with the tide.

Rock Pipit 2 - Red Nab and lighthouse 
Rock Pipit next to the lighthouse 

Song Thrush 1 practicing its singing in the Nature Park

Just out of the recording area
The Glossy Ibis is still showing well in the horse paddock behind Middleton Parish Hall