Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas List

Ages ago, over the Christmas period, Andrew Dawes of Wessex Reiver blog challenged everyone to a Christmas doldrums bird race. I haven't done anything similar since, apart from the local patch thingy and a laid back, head to head with Mr Gale of Surrey.  I was interested the other week, when Andrew threw down the gauntlet again for another week of petty competitiveness where by we all get out between Christmas Day and New Years Day and count how many bird species we see.

As this festive holiday is often quite busy and taken up with visiting family and friends, the challenge can be taken in a very tongue in cheek manner, the whole point being to have fun during the final week of the year.

My week got off to a damp fizzle seeing next to nothing on Christmas Day ( 9 species) and Boxing Day ( not many more). Today was my first proper morning's birding this month so every sighting was to be savoured and made all the more delicious by the sharp, bright, calm weather we crave at this traditionally dull and wet time of year.

I met with John at Amble, first thing, and we covered the whole south side of the Coquet Estuary from the sea upstream to Warkworth. Not wishing to let the cat out of the bag, all I'll say is that a few nice birds were seen such as Little Egret, Peregrine, several Knot, 3 Purple Sandpipers, 40+ Black-tailed Godwits, Mediterranean Gull etc.

Hopefully the weather will hold this week, and I'll build a reasonable total without racing around twitching everyone else's finds. I'll save that one for 2017...

Amble Pier

Adult Med Gull

Eiders in full display, while not eating Warburtons.

Some of the Black tailed Godwits on the estuary.

The calls during disputes were just like a dog's squeaky toy.

1 comment:

Amanda Peters said...

Good luck with the bird count, I'm hoping to do the same for my self, locally on New Years day.
Wishing you well in 2017...
Amanda xx