Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Steady Swallow Passage

With hindsight we could have done some ringing at the 'obs' this morning, but the forecast last night was marginal. Also, what we would have caught I'm not sure. I was at Rossall Point this morning by 0550 and I had virtually full cloud cover and it was calm. Mind you by about 0630 the wind had picked up to a 5-10 mph easterly and that might have put paid to any ringing had we been out.

I think the best way to describe this morning's birding at the point was 'steady'. It was steady on the sea and the vis was steady too!

There were a number of waders attempting to roost on the beach as the tide ran in and thankfully there were few dog walkers this morning to disturb them. I had 564 Dunlin, 44 Ringed Plovers, 41 Sanderling, 23 Turnstones, 9 Oystercatchers and singles of Curlew and Redshank. below are a few shots of the roosting waders.


Ringed Plover


Dunlin & Ringed Plover

As I said previously the sea was 'steady' with 28 Common Scoters, 13 Eider, 47 Sandwich Terns on a feeding circuit, 11 Gannets mainly heading out of the bay, 2 Teal into the bay, 6 Red-breasted Mergansers and 8 Red-throated Divers all heading 'high' to the east. I also picked up 3 Canada Geese a long way out in the bay heading south and they steadily made progress and then made landfall right at the point! I also had a single Atlantic Grey Seal.

The 'vis' was steady and the main feature of the morning was the easterly passage of Swallows; 145 went mainly east with odd singletons heading straight north across Morecambe Bay. Other bits and pieces on vis included 2 Alba Wags, 14 Linnets, 3 Tree Pipits and a Lesser Redpoll. There were no grounded migrants this morning, not even a Wheatear, so I think if we had been out ringing it would have been grim!

It's going to be clear tonight with light northeasterly winds so we will probably make it to the 'obs' as it looks like tomorrow will be the last day that we'll get mist nets up for a while as the wind is going to pick up considerably over the next few days.  

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