Last night I was thumbing through my current big notebook, the one I write up my scribbled field notes into, mainly just to see what the coming weeks gave us last year when I found a recurring theme. In a lot of entries for Boulmer they begin something like this...
It seems that most local patch days are 'generally quiet'. But is that true? Quiet days are all relative to where we watch I suppose. For example on the 25th October 2020 the rest of the page shows...
For many birders who watch an inland or urban areas to walk out in a morning and get Black Redstart, Brent Goose, Purple Sandpipers, Grey Plover, Grey Partridge, Crossbills and Willow Tit would be a very decent patch visit. To be honest its not so bad here too, so its time to be a bit more positive. Whilst we do get some great birds locally, they are the exceptions rather than the rule and most days do get a few good birds of the calibre above. Enough to keep us going.
I digress. Keeping the above in mind, getting back to this week.
A moderate NW wind on Tuesday was enough to get me on to Cullernose Point for an hour and a half seawatching. It was steady going with Great Northern Diver, Bonxie, 9 Barnacle Geese, 3 late Arctic Terns, 3 Velvet Scoters inc 2 lovely smart drakes, Manx Shearwater and Goldeneye amongst others.
Yesterday morning it was back to Boulmer as per. As above, incoming passerine migrants were in short supply, but the sea always helps out. On this occasion we had 26 Whooper Swans S, 1 juv Peregrine, 1 ad winter Little Gull, very smart too, 2 Arctic Skuas, 1 Bonxie, 7 Red throated Divers and a few Common Scoter. On the shore were 21 Ringed Plover, 100 Lapwing, 8 Bar tailed Godwits and 4+ Grey Plovers but we didn't get in to counting them really.
The bushes were 'shivvering' with Dunnocks, up to 6 at a time, something I enjoy seeing in October. High flying Dunnocks are always unusual but we only saw a single Chiffchaff.
Hopefully there will be more seawatching weather later in the week. Thursday seems canny...
|The male Grey Partridge made short work of keeping female Pheasants away from the 'conservation measures'...|
|Lapwings pushed by a rising tide.|