Thursday, 27 November 2014

27th November 2014

Weather: SE 0/1 mist
An accurate count today found a new peak number for the Brent Geese of 189, we expect even higher numbers as the winter arrives. No sign of any thrush movement this morning although a female Reed Bunting was very welcome. A Lapwing was recorded. Still only 2 Purple Sandpipers present, and 11 Bar-tailed Godwits on the east hoyle.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

26th November 2014

Weather: NE force 0/1 drizzle
There seems to be at least 140 Brent geese now present, a new high for the season, very little else to report from a brief visit.

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

25th November 2014

Weather: S force 0/1, low mist
Twenty four Pink-footed Geese flew south west this morning and other fly over records included a single Black-tailed Godwit (west), 220 Grey Plover (north), 225 Sanderling (north/north east). The only obvious small migrants today were 3 Siskins and a Starling, although there still seemed to be quite an abnormal amount of Wrens about. Two Peregrines put on a good show by chasing each other by the east gutter. two Purple Sandpipers were at the north end, while on the shore were 26 Bar-tailed Godwits and 5 Little Egrets.

Monday, 24 November 2014

24th November 2014

Weather: WSW force 2/3
A very brief visit this morning logged 12 Bar-tailed Godwits, and at Little Eye, 4,000 Dunlin, 140 Grey Plover, and 120 Sanderling. No migration but a Blackbird and Song thrush were both present.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

20th November 2014

Weather: SE force 2, later SSE force 3/4
Following the Great Northern Diver of yesterday, another scarce seabird appeared in the form of a male Velvet Scoter flying to the north east. Other highlights from the sea were 5 late adult Gannets, 62 Common Scoter, a Red-breasted Merganser and a Razorbill. A fine visible migration this morning with thrushes and Starlings coming in off the sea at the north end, logged were 12 Blackbirds, 4 Song Thrushes, 8 Redwings,10 Starlings, also 10 of that little considered Hilbre migrant, the Wren. At least one dark-bellied bird was amongst the 120 + Brent seen today, while counts from the east hoyle included 20,000 Knot, 2,000 Dunlin, 300+ Grey Plover, and 300 Sanderling. The only ducks of the day were 4 Teal that swam in the pool between the islands. Little Egrets are again in good numbers, today 8 were about the islands. Fox faeces were found at the south end, examination of which concluded that it has been feeding mainly on mice or (more likely) Short-tailed field voles.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

19th November 2014

Weather: SE 2/3, mist around the estuary
A stunning close sighting of a Great Northern Diver today when a juvenile was feeding 50 yards off the east side of the obs at 10.50hrs and later drifting out on the ebb tide at noon. Other seabirds noted included an adult Gannet, 76 Common Scoter, 38 Great Crested Grebes, 4 Red-throated Divers, 2 Guillemots and a Razorbill. Three Redwings and 2 Siskins passed over, also 21 Starlings in 4 groups. A Sparrowhawk was logged today as well as the more usual Peregrine and Kestrel. Five hundred Shelduck were in the Little Eye area.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

18th November 2014

 Weather: no wind initially, later E 2/3, mist around the coast, mild
It felt like late summer rather than late autumn this morning, and a couple of Red Admiral butterflies arrived to support the deception. The birds however were indeed 'right' for the season with groups of 3,10 and 6 Lapwings hanging about the ridge south of Middle and then over the main island, also Starlings in small parties totalling about 60 and a Raven flying over Little Eye and later seen grappling with a Peregrine over the shore. A few new Blackbirds were in but just a single Redwing which frustratingly landed at the mouth of the 'heli' trap but then flew off south without further ado. A male Goldcrest in the paddocks early on was the sole small migrant. The Brent could not be counted, but 560 Shelduck at Tanskey rocks was notable, the only other wildfowl today were a flock of 4 Wigeon. Purple Sandpipers (above) are up to 8 in number, and other waders today were 3,700 Knot and 22 Bar-tailed Godwits. Eight Little Egrets outnumbered Grey Herons (3), illustrating how times have changed in just a few years. The sea was extremely quiet, even in such good viewing conditions, the best was a single Gannet and 2 Red-throated Divers. Two Rock Pipits flew together from the south end and settled at their favourite feeding place at the north end.
Ringed:  1 Goldcrest, 1 Blackbird        [ 940-38 ]
(DB,AEH,CJ,KMc+SD)          photos AEH