That must qualify for just about the most unoriginal title ever, but when I visited Conder Green this morning the first bird I found was Mondays Lune Estuary Ruff, it ran as an equal to the juvenile Mediterranean Gull which was on Conder Pool along with a Kingfisher and Little Grebe. In the creeks and channel 12 Common Sandpiper, 5 Black - tailed Godwit, c.160 Redshank and 6 Dunlin, about six House Martin are still around River Winds feeding young. The Lune estuary at Glasson Dock was a little depressing with similar numbers to Monday of c.1,000 Redshank, and 130 Dunlin, and little else of note. On Jeremy Lane a flock of c.50 Goldfinch and another flock seen later in the day brought thoughts of whether or not the same numbers would show again at Conder Green this year as in 2008 when c.400 were observed on Monday 22 September. Cockersands was about as depressing as Glasson Dock with a lone Whimbrel, up to 30 Eider off Plover Scar, and no more than c.120 Oystercatcher on the scar.
So after some consideration I made the 30 minute steady drive to Marshaw which amazingly transforms watching wader's to watching Hen Harrier's (but not today) in such a short space of time. The decision was all worth while if only to find two 'Red Listed' birds the Spotted Flycatcher, one in the small plantation just beyond the cattle grid and another later in the plantation behind Tower Lodge. Also here, a male Redstart, a Treecreeper, Buzzard, Grey Wagtail, and a flock of c.50 birds in the air which were initially too distant to hear and gave me quite a run around whilst imagining I was on to the best number of Redpoll I ever saw but turned out to be my second good number of Goldfinch.
On the way home I called in - probably for the last time this year - to check out the House Martin's at Christ Church at Abbeystead to conclusively confirm just one nest being attended to by a pair. At the risk of being a bore I have to once more record this is from c.15 nest's visible still at the church from previous years. There was no sign of the Spotted Flycatchers here today.
Unable to find a suitable pic of my own for this post - nothing new there then - this excellent one of a wing stretching Lapwing is thanks to Peter Guy.