Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It’s No Secret

It’s just birding at the moment with constant blustery weather making a ringing session out of the question at our wind-sensitive winter sites. The November totals will be dire but Will tells me he added one Robin to the figures when one flew into the van through an open door.

I wanted to go to Out Rawcliffe for a look around this morning before I realised today is a shoot day. A local told me there’s yet another feasibility study taking place into the siting of a “farm” of 125 metre high wind-turbines on the moss. On several occasions in the last year or two Will and I had seen the bird surveyors, birders who do the leg work of the consultants by spot counting every month. If you ask, they claim they don’t know why they are counting and what the final counts will be used for! It’s all too political for me, but I hope the same individuals have declared possibly conflicting interests to in turn, their employee and local natural history groups they represent.

This grandiose scheme is the latest attempt after an earlier proposal was chucked out a couple of years ago on the grounds of harm to the area's huge wintering flocks of Pink-footed Geese, wildfowl and breeding birds in general. Rawcliffe Moss is also a Biological Heritage Site. Don’t these companies ever give up in wanting to cover the countryside in concrete and visual eyesores? In the last month up to 15,000 geese have flown in to the moss to feed in the half light of early mornings, some of which were murky, misty, even foggy, the type of morning when geese in particular are known to lose their bearings. Fresh minced Pinkie anyone?

Pink-footed Goose

Goose Mincing Machine

There was time for a look at Pilling this morning where I found my glove from last week without finding a lot different on the bird front. Pink-footed Geese were to the fore, the foreshore in fact with circa 1500 at Fluke Hall and c2500 at Lane Ends.

Passerines proved difficult to find again with 8 Tree Sparrow, 6 Greenfinch, 11 Linnet and 22 Twite at Fluke Hall, the latter two species in separate flock as ever, but also separated by their jizz and their habitat choices. Rarely if ever do I see these closely related species together. On this occasion the Linnet were along Ridge Farm hedgerow, the Twite on the salt marsh.



Just 18 Whooper Swans behind the sea wall with a Merlin giving a splendid fly past, but it was a Peregine that constantly spooked a couple of thousand Lapwing and 600 Teal at Broadfleet. Just 4 Little Egrets today, with 2 Goldeneye and 2 Tufted Duck on the pools.



Millhouse Photography said...

Congratulations on the glove find Phil - that's a satisfactory closure to that particular sub-plot!

On the other main issue in your post: Please could these greedy (choose swear word) just (choose swear word) off! I'm fed up of human's lack of respect for wildlife.

Peter Fearon said...

Does that Goose-mincing-machine do Tories as well?


Mary Howell Cromer said...

Geesh. hard fortunes for the Pink Footed Geese and any other birds that get in the way of the grim reaper in those gigantic wind turbines.

We have them in the plains states and I had read recent articles about some of our own species be killed by them.

While at first glance and when in the unknown stage, one thinks them as pretty neat when first seen and then when you read such articles, realize the toll they take...

NO to your question...those powers that be, do not give one good wit about nature, anymore than those powers that be believe that we are not hurting anything by cutting down the trees in the rainforests...a mighty dollar is all that means anything...

OK...I shall hush for now...glad you found your glove as well;)~

eileeninmd said...

It is sad that the wind turbines are so dangerous for the birds. Sorry about the blustery weather.

news said...

Hi Phil: The terms SSSI etc; do not mean anything when commercial interest are involved.Best wishes JWB.

Russell Jenkins said...

My mum sent me a pair of gloves from Aus a few years ago and I lost one on the second day of using them. Wish I had your glove intuition. ..I don't know how to think about the wind turbines. They're an improvement for the green house but not for those who live in the skies. Some curious passerines that I've never heard of before. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful shots -that last one gives me a sense of freedom!

Stuart Price said...

You should come to Japan, loads of huge wind farms here and the local authorities just love the concrete................

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