At this time of year heat haze might not be the technical definition of the poor visibility caused by the temperature differential between the air and the sea, but whatever the correct term is the outcome was the same and viewing conditions were far from perfect! Looking across the bay with the naked eye the visibility looked quite good and the snow capped Lakeland mountains stood out quite well as did Barrow-in-Furness town hall clock, Peel Castle and Walney Island, but through the scope all was not well.
There seemed to be an increase in Eiders this morning and in total I had 40 either on or over the sea. In addition to the Eiders on the sea I had 26 Cormorants, 64 Common Scoters, five Great Crested Grebes motoring out of the bay, 15 Red-breasted Mergansers, 16 Pintails, a Med. Gull, two Little Gulls, a Red-throated Diver, a Velvet Scoter, a Whooper Swan and two Shelducks. Not rocking, but not awful either.
I had a Snow Bunting fly past/over me but I couldn't see it. It was calling loudly as it flew east to west but I couldn't locate it at all. It is possible that it was behind me and the 15 mph southerly wind had turned the volume up to number eleven!
Waders were thin on the ground this morning and all I had in any numbers were 150 Sanderlings flushed from their high tide roost by a, you've guessed it, dog and dog walker!
Four Reed Buntings feeding on the beach and dunes were new in and could perhaps have been displaced by cold weather. And that was about it for my pre-work interlude before I had to return to the coal face.
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7 hours ago