Saturday, November 14, 2009

Start at the End

As usual it was just a dash out after lunch when the clouds looked a little brighter to the west and by 1330 I was walking from Fluke Hall towards Knott End hoping to pick up a Snow Bunting. Or if I got really lucky and the sun came out, perhaps grab one or two pictures of the Black Redstart if it was still around. We used to get more Snow Buntings, a party of 7 or 8 or maybe more, but thanks to whatever, now we get singles if we are lucky, but if there’s one around surely there are others to find?

I’d judged the sky well by beating the crowds out as I walked the sea wall alone. Ridge Farm was well flooded, but at least the puddles held some birds to look at with 5 Pied Wagtails and a dozen Meadow Pipits making the most of the damp ground. Further back, out of harms way I counted 750 Pink-footed Geese on the old potato field and on the field behind the gorse hedge 40 Curlew picked through the edge of a flood where it was their moving about that may have flushed a couple of Snipe from the mud.

When I got closer to Knott End a group of 9 Whooper Swans came from inland then over Preesall Sands but two broke off to head towards Fluke leaving seven on the shore. I recently discovered that Whooper Swan is the Finnish national bird, not many people know that. Good choice.

By now I had counted 6 Little Egrets at various spots on the way, then at Cocker’s Dyke 2 Mistle Thrush perched in an obvious manner on the trackside wires where I guess they hold winter territory, but in what doesn’t look an obvious spot for this species. Just down from here I came across the Black Redstart darting around the rocks where there were lots of insects in the shelter of the sea wall. With the grey skies, getting a picture was out of the question so I will post another one of Paul’s excellent pictures from Friday when he skipped work to go birding. Some things just don’t change.

No sign of the Snow Bunting from Friday nor any other Snow Bunt.

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