I've been trying to get out for a walk on the patch every morning before work and mostly succeeding. The problem is that dawn is getting visibly later each day. The sun wasn't even up over the sea when I went through Cresswell just after seven this morning. It's just a matter of a couple of weeks when I have re-configure my home-working routine and swap morning walks for lunchtime walks.
I'm not looking forward to that...
So I'll make the most of it while I can. I've been out every morning this week, I don't get far at this time of year - a walk is stretching it to be fair.
Today I started at the plantation and got as far as the Budge screen - all of 400m. Three Chiffchaffs were in the bushes by the entrance and I counted eleven in total - one appeared to come in-off the dunes. Had there been an arrival?
|Freshly arrived? A Chiffchaff|
What I am finding odd is the number of Willow Warblers being reported elsewhere along the coast, sometimes as many as Chiffs and even more in a couple of cases. Am I missing something? All of my phyloscs this morning were Chiffchaffs that I could see.. (apart from the Yellow-browed Warbler). Okay there is some variation in them but they were Chiffchaffs.
|A Chiffchaff (not a Willow Warbler)|
Swallows are still going south - I counted nine this morning and three House Martins. viz-mig also included 11 Skylark south and a few finches and Meadow Pipits etc. Three Redwing and six Blackcaps made the most of the berry-crop.
Pink-footed Geese are almost constant, this morning c750 went south in several skeins.
|Pink-footed Geese - almost constant overhead this morning|
Yesterday I walked north and had a single Yellow-browed Warbler along the bushes. The finch flock in the dunes has grown to above 200 in number, probably nearer 250. I would guess 60-65% Linnet, 30% Goldfinch with a few Lesser Redpoll and hangers-on like Reed Buntings, Chiffchaffs, Tits etc.
On Monday Janet and I did a similar walk to my route this morning - here are some comparisons:
Chiffchaff - Today 11, Monday 2
Goldcrest - Today 6, Monday - 45
Robin - Today 4, Monday - 17
Blackcap - Today 6, Monday - 4
It looks like heavy rain overnight with a frontal system crossing the north sea, it's out of the west but might drop something in?
As promised, here are some gulls from Sunday evening:
|Second-winter Herring Gull|
|Smart first-winter Herring Gull|
|Probably 1W Great-black-backed Gull - with a darker, deeper bill|
|Another 1W Herring Gull|
|Second-winter Common Gull|
|Adult or 3rd Winter Common Gull|