I headed up to Saltholme to attend a ringing demonstration. Although the local ringing group was well organised and informative, the birds must have been forewarned as very few were trapped in the nets. Just a few blue tits and goldfinch. I did learn, however, how to sex goldfinches! I also walked out to Haverton scrub to look for the long-eared owl but it had not been located. I headed back a trifle frustrated but enjoying the fresh air. As a firm believer that no day out birding is completely disappointing, I decided to head to Hartlepool hoping something would turn up.
Off Jackson's Landing a group of red-breasted mergansers let me get close.
I wasn't disappointed!
A raft of eider was fairly close in across from the lifeboat station. As I made my way along what they call the Town Wall the eider came in closer.
Curlew were on the pebbled shoreline. Lots of oystercatcher on the ground often don't make a good shot so this individual looked rather good up on a ''rock'' away from the others. It began to drizzle as I headed back towards the grassy beach area if you know where I mean. I sat down on the grass and hoped some purple sandpipers might come close.
A pied wagtail came to inspect me.
The sandpipers were very restless but I got some nice views and discarded many later! As the light changed to a watery sun I snapped a drake eider on a concrete groin.