Yesterday was my first visit to Boulmer, patch #2, of the year.
As I left the house, a Raven called low overhead in the still semi dark sky.
It was a lovely calm and bright morning on the coast. We managed to get ahead of the crowds by striding along to Seaton Point at sunrise where the tide was well in and a lot of waders were gathered right along the shore. A rough tally produced 108+ Sanderling, 62+ Dunlin, 23+ Bar tailed Godwits, 13+ Oystercatchers, 13+ Ringed Plover, 12+ Grey Plover, 50+ Redshank, 22+ Turnstone and 8 Purple Sandpipers. There was very little moving at sea though 1 Red breasted Merganser, 2 Goldeneye , 10+ Red throated and 1 Great Northern Divers were seen.
After we had tea at the car, the still flooded Bull Mere was counted. There were plenty of common birds but maybe 88 Wigeon were the only things of note.
Back down to the shore in front of the pub there were more waders to count. 123+ Dunlin, 1 Knot, 9 Ringed Plover, 4 Grey Plover, 2 Sanderling and 7 Bar tailed Godwit while nearby were 3 Goldeneye, a Shelduck and 1 sea-going Little Grebe in its usual rockpool channel.
As you can see, I kept a basic list. Its not complete and there is no end total.
This year I am keeping lists (see here for Gav's take on it at Not Quite Scilly) in a slightly different way. I wont be keeping totals online, but may post the final result at the end of year round up. Or not, I'll see?
Usually we hare-arse around in January breaking our neck to get a Yellowhammer or Treecreeper or whatever when we know full well that we cannot go a full 12 months not seeing them. So this time, I am taking it easy, accepting what comes my way without the pressure.
Of course I will incorporate variety into my areas but without hammering it. I am trying to focus on patch value this year by seeing what each day's highlight will be and enjoying it for its own sake without the numbers running the show, so no Bubo this time.
Back home, we had a walk with Peggy down to the pond field. 2 Crossbills calling from the spruce were the first I've seen here for months