Sunday, June 01, 2008

Saturday 31st May...

Above - From the left..Jimmy Steel, Ian Fisher, Graeme Bowman, Chris Knox, Alan Curry, Roger Forster and Mike Hodgson.

Above - from the left...Mark Lowther,Andy Cowell, Steve Rippon, Alan Hall,John Malloy, Bob Dack, Andy McLevy, Person with blue coat?, Mark Armstrong ( I knew all along?), Dave Elliott, Les ( it was just over there) Robson, Eddie Slack, Tim Dean and Paul Stewart.

Above - Off we go...

Above - From the left...Steve Rippon,Joe Dobinson, Gary Woodburn, Alan Gilbertson ( is he saying 'we're doomed.' ) and two unidentified.

Thats what I like about county twitches. 30 birders and only 3 who's names I don'y know. Its just one happy family....

Fair, dry, light - mod NE3.

Boulmer north end this morning. The only birds of note were a group of 3 Goosanders and 1 Red breasted Merganser feeding just off the totem pole. The first arrivals of the regular summer moulting flock.

Then it all kicked off.

At 11.00 Graeme Bowman, Les Robson and Chris Knox found a Great Snipe at the Snook, Holy Island. As there has never been a twitchable one in the county, crowds would be galvanised into action. As soon as the tide receded a group of about 30 of us met and arranged an organised search so as everyone could see the bird without it getting too much individual disturbance.

The scenes were like something out of 'Dad's Army' with Mssr's Cleeves and Steele in starring roles ( I think Tim was Captain Mainwaring, meself...) We formed a not so orderly line and wandered to where the bird was last seen. Despite the next 3 hours quartering the area ( making sure to avoid sensitive habitat areas, before someone pips in ) the bird was nowhere to be found.

Still, we had a good laugh and some other bits and pieces kept my interest up anyway.

Coral Root Orchid 1 small specimen in a dune slack with Butterworts and Northern Marsh Orchids.
Garden Tiger Moth caterpillars allover as were Cinnabar Moths.

Probable Bedstraw Hawkmoth seen by me and Steve Rippon as it dashed by evading capture from me. It was clearly one of the 'striped' hawks and according to Tom Tams, this would be the most likely candidate.

Marsh Harrier 1 female soaring towards the villge.

Above - The Coral Root Orchid twitch was an altogether more sedate affair. From the left...Ian Fisher, Brian Bullough and Tom Tams.

Below - The object of our concentration - the tiny Coral Root Orchid. What a display.


Anonymous said...

The most enjoyable dip I've had Stu! Glad to catch up with it this damp Sunday afternoon, an "off the radar" county tick!! Grown men hugging.... PS, my mate in blue coat is Mark Armstrong!

Stewart said...

Cheers John, who is the other man in blue coat though?

The Wessex Reiver said...

Shame the Gt Snipe eluded you, but a cracking posting none the less from a wonderful part of the county... you're now making me homesick!

Blyth Birder said...

Why do people still wear wellies?

Thats been puzzling me for a while now - particularly in an era of inexepensive, breathable and far more comfortable alternatives?

Unless you're wading knee deep I simply don't get the logic?