Saturday, 2 October 2010

Lapland Saves the Day

No ringing at the 'obs' this morning as the southerly wind was a little on the strong side and it increased as the morning progressed. However, the fact that I wasn't out ringing didn't mean longer in bed as I like to be out by first light even when birding.

First light found me at Rossall Point. The tide was in, although I knew there would be little on the sea because of the wind direction, it was more the 'vis' that I was interested in. There was some vis this morning, but it wasn't exactly heavy, well not over Rossall at least. Totals were as follows and all movement was southerly in the main:

Meadow Pipit - 61
Linnet - 11
Chaffinch - 2
Alba Wag - 5
Pink-footed Goose - 25
Carrion Crow - 7
Goldfinch - 2
Skylark - 7

After I had been at Rossall for about half an hour Ian came walking along the dunes to join me. Just as he got to me I heard a 'tick-tick chu' (I'm crap at describing bird calls) and was about to shout "Lapland Bunt" when Ian beat me to it. We watched the bird as it headed south and west. At one stage it looked like it might drop onto the golf course behind the dunes but it just kept on going.

 Lapland Bunting - robbed off the net

There was a nice selection of waders on the beach that included 98 Turnstones, 216 Oystercatchers, 85 Sanderlings, 11 Knot and 53 Ringed Plovers.


As I indicated before the sea was very quiet and all I had were 16 Common Scoters and 8 Eiders. Grounded migrants were also thin on the ground and can be summed up as 2 Wheatears! As Ian I headed back towards the car park a juvenile Peregrine came in off the sea and headed south.

We then went over to the cemetery for a quick look, although we didn't expect to have many grounded migrants, it was a more a case of "it's October and you just never know"! Grounded migrants in the cemetery were just 4 Coal Tits, Goldcrest and a Chiffchaff.

Vis had picked up a little now and we had 2 Tree Sparrows plus Siskin, Meadow Pipits, Alba Wags, Goldfinch, Skylark and Linnets going over. Looking further east towards the Wyre estuary there was a continuous stream of Pipits and Finches heading south. Why they weren't going over where we were I don't know, but that's what makes birding so interesting.

The forecast for tomorrow is very similar to today so it will be some more birding for me, with hopefully some ringing on Monday morning.

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