Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Switched On!

The title is pathetic but I couldn't come up with anything original and it relates to the fact we turned on our central heating this evening as it's getting 'a bit cold now' and I'm getting 'a bit old now'....anyway who cares about a title, lets get on with the birding.

Knot. Brian Rafferty.

Brian Rafferty has been doing some coastal photography recently whilst JB and I have been doing some coastal birding today with some nice rewards for us all. Brian's photograph shows a fraction of the mass of Knot at high tide at Southport, a place I used to go regularly with John Leedal, happy days, happy memories, and if you love to see thousands of waders on good 10m tides then Birkdale/Ainsdale beaches are the places to be...Thanks for the pic Brian, excellent as ever. If you wish you can keep up to date with BR's website HERE

At Conder Green I was pleased to find at least 12 Little Grebe (I think there may be 14) on Conder Pool today, so we now stand with an equal record to 2009 and I reckon there are more to come. Also noted on the pool, Common Sandpiper, Kingfisher, 3 Tufted Duck, and 3 Wigeon. In the creeks 2 Spotted Redshank and 7 Snipe seen.

At Glasson Dock on the Lune Estuary, even smaller numbers of waders today with only 8 Golden Plover to be seen, 75 Bar-tailed Godwit and c.40 Dunlin, at least 220 Wigeon and a Little Egret were over by Waterloo Cottage. At Cockersands, never prepared to leave JB for hours on end I walked as far as Plover Scar and noted 20 Eider, c.45 Wigeon, and leaving JB to count the rest of the waders I noted yesterdays 3 Turnstone again and a Little Egret was also on Plover Scar.

From Fluke Hall Lane 6 Whooper Swans were in the stubble field are twelve days later than last years three opposite Braides on 1 October. From Fluke Hall slipway counts of at least 320 Dunlin, 40 Sanderling, 30 Grey Plover, and a Wheatear on the sea wall. On Pilling Marsh at least 6,000 Pink-footed Geese.

A visit to Knott End was well rewarded off the Esplanade by c.2,000 Oystercatcher, a good count of 220 Sanderling, 7 Knot, 16 Bar-tailed Godwit, and 5 Eider on the sea, 2 Teal on the beach seemed a little out of place here, and yet another Little Egret.   

And finally....

Scarlet Oak Leaf Fire Star. Richard Shilling.

There was no way I could ever have ignored this latest piece of landart excellence by RS. Thanks for this Richard, in the first place red is my favourite colour, and this simple yet stunning creation of yours lights up 'just another birding blog' to unbelievable proportions in my opinion....shuks!! Keeping up to date with this man and his art is highly recommended HERE


They're still coming in and today's news is of a Common Nighthawk in Co.Durham yesterday. This bird breeds in Southern Canada and the USA, south into Central America and the West Indies. It winters in South America, south to central Argentina. The first UK record is of a bird on the Isles of Scilly in September 1927. Several of these unfortunate creatures have been found in poor condition or dead but one individual gained some popularity and publicity when it was found exhausted at Moreton on Merseyside in October 1985, was taken into care and in due course gained itself an airlift to Belize where it was released back into the wild.  



Warren Baker said...

Maybe a collection should be had from all twitches, to pay for a trip home for all the lost vagrants Bob :-)

Brian Rafferty said...

Pete. Thanks for the publicity. Hope you can join me at one of these wader roosts sometime.

Glad you had an enjoyable time on your local patch with plenty of excellent sightings. Take care.

Pete Woodruff said...

Thanks WB/BR for your much appreciated comments.

Colin Bushell said...

Met Brian near Southport again the other day and I'm ashamed to say for the third consecutive time I didn't recognise him! I blame it on that pic of his all togged up in his photography gear .... lame, but it's my only defence.

Really enoying the latest posts Pete, especially the comparisons with the two coasts. Have to say I'm starting a "West is best" campaign - loads of underwatched sites in Lancs.


Pete Woodruff said...

Must confess I asked for a little 'flak' in posting the stuff about east v's west. But for the record I've always been a native of the west and in birding terms would never have wished it any other way.

Little wonder you expect to see the 'Man from the armed forces in Afghanistan' in the photograph Colin, and don't know the camera man you meet in Southport.