Thursday, January 28, 2010

New On The List

The morning started with a surprise when at Knott End jetty a male Tufted Duck drifted quite close in on the incoming tide, then just as quickly floated out again towards the middle of the tidal channel. An unusual event indeed for my imaginary Knott End list, but 4 Eider, 3 drakes and a female that the tufted headed over to were more typical.

Tufted Duck

The Twite flew over a couple of times, two separate groups of 20 plus as I watched them head towards the village where they eventually joined up to form a tight flock of 45 birds. On the shore just below the jetty a couple of wary, totally grey Knot fed amongst 23 Turnstone and a half a dozen Redshank. I didn’t give the Knot its full title, which of course is actually Red Knot, the description of a plumage we hardly see them in, and then only partially; they are of course one of the circumpolar long distant migrants of the wader world.

"Red" Knot

Knot Migration


It was a week ago that I saw tremendous numbers of waders in a feeding frenzy on the inland fields just recovered from the weeks of frost, but this week all change again as numbers reverted to more normal levels. Only Fluke Hall Lane field held good numbers of about 120 Lapwing and 40 Redshank, even though the grass remained flooded and the few Curlew around were up to their ears in the dark stuff.


There was little to report from Lane Ends but far off Pink-footed Geese and white swans, so distant I couldn’t be certain but I thought the usual Whooper Swan, about 25 partly hidden in the ditches and low parts of the green marsh. There were 2 Little Egret here, and later 2 at Braides then 2 near Cockersands.

I checked out Conder Green to find 2 Spotted Redshank, 1 Grey Heron, 7 Tufted Duck, 3 Wigeon, a solitary Grey Plover, 10 Shelduck and 80 very mobile Teal, with 4 Snipe playing at statues on the edge of the island.




As I drove up to Cockersands with the car window open I heard croaking Raven again in what has been my Raven Week, and then saw a pair overhead flying closely together heading inland. A quick check at the Crook Farm end saw the usual wader culprits scattered too far and near to count with any certainty but between here and the caravan park I noted huge Wigeon numbers of 1500+ and more than 300 Pintail.

Close to the caravan park about 15 Tree Sparrows sat in the hawthorns at the awkward to park spot but of course weren’t there on the way back when my camera lay primed on the seat next to me. A Stonechat searched the shoreline but insisted on keeping some distance from me, so my photograph is poor, suffering from the usual defect of too much ISO on a grey end to a sunny start, but at least it’s current.


“Others” seen up here included up to 1000 Lapwings, 600 Dunlin, 15 Ringed Plover, 80 Golden Plover and a fine Merlin flashing by to finish an uneventful but interesting morning.


Larry said...

What a great birding day Phil! I love that close-up of the Snipe! Awesome.

Bhavesh Chhatbar said...

These birds are so cute. And your photography is so nice :)

There's an award for you on my blog. Take it and showcase it on your blog!

Beautiful Walls

Related Posts with Thumbnails