I did see a good number of species including a patchyear-tick, great northern diver just offshore, but too far to photograph. I also saw at least 36 long-tailed tits, some of the ones we ringed and whole lot more and a female bullfinch, which are rare at Dru...but I still came away feeling very frustrated and somewhat depressed - why?
Well on the bits managed by NWT (budge fields and pool) I saw:
mute swan (6 been there all year)
carrion crow (1)
...and a fly-over grey heron
All very nice but the list should read more like teal (250 and a green winged), wigeon (300), Lapwing (200) etc etc. The Budge fields and the deep pool are deserted of wildlife, there is nothing there.
I was at the second half of the NTBC 50th anniversary conference last night (after going to the stadium of plight to watch the scum turn us over) and the desperate state of Druridge Pools and the other Druridge reserves was a hot topic of conversation, the Pools even got a mention in the last lecture for their lack of birds!! People were telling me they don't even bother to go to Druridge Pools now, they drive straight past, if local birders aren't even going, what are visiting birders going to make of it all?
Here is the picture 15 years ago (1993):
tufted duck 70
even ten years ago (1998):
teal 258-273 (and green winged teal)
These are all peak 4th quarter counts.
That says it all I'm afraid..........I feel there is nothing more I can do, I despair!
Sorry for the rant, I'll leave this post with some arty shots of sanderling on the beach. I'm off to bait-up our twite ringing site.
153 great northern diver