Friday 24 May 2013

I tried an evening seawatch

I checked RBA at lunchtime and before leaving my office tonight and there were some pretty impressive seawatching totals from the regular east coast sites, including a few long-tailed skuas, so I thought I might chance my arm at Druridge after work.

But.....not before a quick check of the Budge fields which produced a nice year-tick in the form of a wood sandpiper. 

So to the dunes. It was still very cold, with a force three north-north westerly blowing. Within 20 minutes I was freezing cold, the cold didn't put-off some eediots though who thought jumping into the sea would be fun (they looked like young farmers or summick - obviously trying to impress the girls!).

I did an hour and 20 minutes, but things had obviously tailed off. I saw no shearwaters or skuas, not even a manxy! There were long lines of kittiwakes heading by and plenty of fulmars, some flying along the dunes right past my nose. there were also strings of gannets and guilliemots (with the occasional razorbill) all heading north.

The highlight of my seawatch was a male velvet scoter sat on the sea, not too far out.

I've got the whole Bank Holiday weekend off which makes a change so hope to be out birding or ringing for most of it.

120 wood sandpiper
121 velvet scoter

Both of these species are worth two points in the patchwork challenge (unbelievably the same as nightjar!!), taking my total to 148.

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