Saturday, 25 September 2010

s(NO)w Buntings

Scoured the dunes and beach to the south of the west pier at Blyth's South Harbour this afternoon in the hope of locating the Snow Buntings.  Needless to say, and in keeping with my usual output, it was 3 - 0 to the buntings.

Fifteen (more) Barnacle Geese north, and a couple of dozen Teal on the sea.

Good Point

10:45 - 14:30; a well disciplined, glued feet spell at Snab Point.  Different day, different birds.  No Kittiwakes, nor skuas, nor shearwaters (plenty of very distant shapes that even a scope on warp factor 6 couldn't i/d).

105 Barnacle Geese N (90 up high and 15 low over the sea)
6 P-b Brent Geese N
3 R-b Mergansers (F) N
Small flocks of Teal and Wigeon N
Gannets N/S
2 Common Scoter (M) N
2 Grey Heron N
1 (poss. 2) B-t Diver N

Best part was Peregrine flying north from the bay, spooking all in its path, and in a very amateurish way, it sort of hovvered over a couple of waders at the eastern edge of the rocks, half landing/half hunting, then the waders flew off and it took a brief breather before up and off east over the sea and out of sight.  Brilliant!

Friday, 24 September 2010


Well, I thought I'd done reasonably well.  Snab Point for 07:30, hidden to the south of the Point, rain stopped, and voila, a heavy stream of Kittiwakes (especially juveniles), Gannets and distant shearwaters from the off.

07:45 - Close in, a drake Velvet Scoter.  Nice!
07:55 - Closer still, a Sooty Shearwater.  Nicer!
08:25 - Not too near nor too far, a Great Skua.

And in the words of 70s Punk icons, The Clash, should I stay or should I go?  Answer?  Stay.  Reality? Go.

Off to Cresswell for an hour.  Wind in through the hide's windows, and the majority of the birds on the south shore of the NE corner.  Not too much to get too excited about, I must say.

Then The Pools.  All quiet bar the noise of the wind.  A nice drake Scaup from the Oddie, and other miscellaneous wildfowl too.

East Chev?  The Sav Grebe looking quite Red-necked, I must say, in very good light.  The red eye was the giveaway for me as it remained close to the north shore.

And then home for tea and sticky buns.

And BirdGuides for Snab from 08:50, L-t Skua (year tick) and Pom too (lifer).  And hods of Sooties there and Newton.  And a Hoopoe at Shiremoor!!

Tomorrow?  Feet glued to the Point, I feel.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Still Here!

To all those who have enquired about my welfare, given the lack of posts of late, I thank you (both).  I have been out over the weekend, but quantity led quality and although both days were pleasant, there was nothing to write (home) about.  The sea off Church Point on Saturday was spectacular, but more for surfers than birders, and East Chev. on Sunday was a very pleasant stroll with Mrs L.  There was plenty to raise the binoculars about, but nothing to prompt a call to BirdGuides.  I am sure you get my drift.

But this weekend looks promising, if the weatherman (or woman) is right.

And with a week off from Friday, a chance or two to expand my personal ornitholgical record documentation?