The gloomy pics are both of the early autumn weather we're 'enjoying' in our area, this one was taken by me on Sunday 11 September when the gale wasn't quite as strong as it was the following two days.
This one I took today at Cockersands early afternoon by which time I'd reached the 'shouldn't I be doing something more useful with my life' mode, this was a washout and I buggered off home. The view is of what you can see - through the mist and drizzle - of Sunderland Point from the Cockersands lighthouse.
I'd started off in good spirits - which didn't last very long - at Conder Green where the only birds to find their way into the book were, 5 Little Grebe and 'the' 2 Wigeon on Conder Pool, with 35 Teal in the creeks. The circuit proved pretty worthless but at least 80 Goldfinch were of note and perhaps pointed towards the chance of c.300 as in September 2009, and c.200 in 2010.
At Glasson Dock on the Lune Estuary where today there was no chance of me becoming a dedicated counter for anybody. Something put panic into probably 9,000 birds, but despite a thorough grilling when they settled down again I noted just 3 Black-tailed Godwit, and the Golden Plovers didn't reach three figures here today.
The day was illuminated by the sighting of an immature male Marsh Harrier which I saw from Moss Lane giving excellent views quartering the fields. From the lighthouse soon before the weather turned positively grim, some birding from the car produced 6 Bar-tailed Godwit, c.650 Redshank, 70 Dunlin and similar Ringed Plover....Repent the end is nigh!
Grey Phalarope. Brian Rafferty
You don't get the opportunity very often - if ever - to photograph at close range a bird like the Grey Phalarope was at Lytham St Anne's recently, but BR took full advantage of the situation to achieve a stunning image of this juvenile bird....Thanks for this once more Brian.
A Red-eyed Vireo was found at St Mary's here today. One of the commonest birds of deciduous woodlands of North America, it winters in South America, south to Argentina, and is the commonest North American passerine to reach Britain.