Sunday, 9 April 2017

7th and 8th April

The winds gradually eased off which combined with some long periods of sunshine made it a much more pleasant couple of days to be out and about; the Kingfisher remained around Hooking and the Green-winged Teal was still on Gretchen through the 7th when there were also notable counts of 13 Shelduck, 13 Long-tailed Ducks and 13 Red-breasted Mergansers with a lingering Goldeneye, 3 Black-tailed Godwits and 381 Golden Plover while the recently arrived pair of Great Skuas seemed settled on the west coast terrorising all in their path.

                Landbirds were still slow to arrive as befits the tail end of a spell of nasty, strong westerlies as counts included 3 Woodpigeons, 10 Wheatears, 11 Redwings, single Carrion Crow and Brambling and 5 Snow Buntings.

Short-eared Owl, photo Larissa Simulik

                Still bright with lightish winds on the 8th and as a result there was a trickle of migrants making landfall including a little influx of 35 Wheatears, 288 Meadow Pipits and 66 Pied Wagtails along with a Short-eared Owl, 3 Fieldfares, 3 Chiffchaffs, 2 Rook and single Brambling and Snow Bunting.   The first Glaucous Gull since 27th March was also noteworthy - a second winter off The Lurn.

                The Northern Harrier made yet another appearance but there was no sign of the Kingfisher while there were still some decent wildfowl counts with the single Whooper Swan and Pink-footed Goose with 697 Greylags, 215 Wigeon, 12 Pintail, the Goldeneye, 16 Red-breasted Mergansers and 4 Great-northern Divers.   Waders were also well represented with counts of 280 Oystercatchers, 138 Purple Sandpipers and 354 Turnstone.

Black-headed Gull, photo Simon Davies

Great Black-backed Gull, photo Simon Davies

The usual response when a Bonxie flies through! photo Simon Davies

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