15th - 22nd September 2017

September 25, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Having my cake...

15th-22nd September

September 15th

I'll begin with a fairly crazy day in North Wales. I was on site at Rhos Point near Colwyn Bay by 7am. Getting out of Tiggy I picked up the bins and wandered across the grass to have an initial look round. I immediately saw a fairly distant Leach's petrel wave hopping a fair way offshore. This was followed by two sabine's gulls fluttering past almost in front of my nose!! I went to get the camera. This was, of course, fatal. Later in the morning other birders saw the sabine's again and we spotted a couple of Leach's on the sea but they were very hard to photograph [unlike the experiences of birders at New Brighton over the previous two days].

Steadying myself against a lamp-post I saw this dot! Leach's Petrel!Leach's Petrel! Let's crop that one.

Leach's PetrelLeach's Petrel White rump showing. I suppose it looks a bit like a bird... Leach's PetrelLeach's Petrel Leach's PetrelLeach's Petrel When it felt it might be swamped by a larger wave it did this - proving the identification! Leach's PetrelLeach's Petrel This all took time. In between I snapped curlew and sandwich tern in the poor light. CurlewCurlew Sandwich TernsSandwich Terns Sandwich TernsSandwich Terns Sandwich TernsSandwich Terns Nearby Conwy RSPB had a grey phalarope so, naturally, I went to have a look. Grey PhalaropeGrey Phalarope Grey PhalaropeGrey Phalarope By text message Sheila asked if I'd be going for chough. The satnav suggested South Stack was about 45 minutes away. 

When I arrived I chatted to a RSPB volunteer and asked if chough were being seen that morning. 'Look out of the window,' he said. There was a chough on a bird table!! I got the camera and set off up the hill as he then suggested. The bird table bird had gone. I soon met up with a couple of red-legs. ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough [In all these chough, stonechat and wheatear photos the blue is the sea not the sky] ChoughChough ChoughChough Wryneck chough! ChoughChough ChoughChough ChoughChough A lady said there was a wheatear further up so I continued. I soon spotted this distant bird ahead. StonechatStonechat Looked more like a stonechat. Same image cropped much later at home. StonechatStonechat StonechatStonechat Yet as I grew closer a wheatear did appear and I never saw the stonechat again. WheatearWheatear WheatearWheatear WheatearWheatear

September 17th

Another early start for a seawatch at Flamborough Head. Hoping for sooty shearwater as many had gone north the previous few days. Never saw one although a few were reported. Glad to pick up manx shearwaters and arctic skuas as year ticks. I continued mid-morning towards Spurn calling at Hornsea Mere in case a few little gulls were resting on the pontoons. Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Little GullLittle Gull Parked up at Kilnsea I spotted a group of birders looking at something... I joined them. Spotted flycatcher. Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher Spotted FlycatcherSpotted Flycatcher I was especially pleased to also spot a lesser whitethroat there. Lesser WhitethroatLesser Whitethroat Lesser WhitethroatLesser Whitethroat Lesser WhitethroatLesser Whitethroat Lesser WhitethroatLesser Whitethroat Lesser WhitethroatLesser Whitethroat Word came of a red-breasted flycatcher at Kew Villa. Pied flycatcher was soon seen. Where was the red-breasted?
Pied FlycatcherPied Flycatcher Pied FlycatcherPied Flycatcher It eventually revealed itself. Red-breasted FlycatcherRed-breasted Flycatcher Red-breasted FlycatcherRed-breasted Flycatcher Last bird of the day: hobby by Easington Cemetery. HobbyHobby HobbyHobby

End of Part One

Just scroll down for Part 2


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