Monday 1 August 2011

Weekend Catch-up

These long, light, evenings are making it impossible to catch on paperwork and blog writing, shouldn't grumble though, I'd much rather be out birding than writing about it.

So, back to Friday, a northerly continued all day, so I though an hours seawatching before tea would be worthwhile, it wasn't. The best bird was yellow wagtail over. I guess Fridays northerly was quite localised.

After tea, we had an aborted attempt to catch storm petrels. Aborted due to a technology failure, we need to find a louder recording to use as a lure..oh well, at least everything else worked. There was a BIG gull roost on the beach at dusk and a barn owl hunted through the dunes.

A lie-in on Saturday then a good wander around the patch, it was very quiet, especially for passerines in the bushes. On the main pool there was a gang of juvvy pied wagtails and a stock dove with plenty of hirundines feeding over the water.

A quick look offshore produced a close great-crested grebe and a few red-throated divers but nothing was moving, until, I was just about to pack up when a sooty shearwater went north, really close in. So I though I give it a bit longer, 40 minutes longer and only a handful of manxies and 3 roseate terns to show for it.

On Saturday evening we ringed at Ellington Pond and on Sunday I was ringing at Gosforth Park.

On Sunday afternoon, a strong SE had picked up so I thought I would have look on the sea again at high tide. Again, little was moving, though there was a movement from oystercatcher with about 70 going south in small groups, 3 turnstone also flew south, my first of the autumn and first of the year at Druridge.

Late evening I returned to check out the gull roost, gulls arrived steadily as dusk approached and were still arriving when I packed up at half-nine. The majority were common gull, I estimated 1800 (and this was only the birds in the patch, not the birds roosting at Chibburn Mouth), there were also 450 black-headed and smattering of large gulls. Two Mediterranean gulls were my first of the year and whimbrel flew south.

142 sooty shearwater
143 turnstone
144 mediterranean gull

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