Saturday 13 April 2019

Arctic Tern and Bonxie

The Arctic Tern was feeding around the buoys for quite some time. It was always distant but I attempted some field sketches to try and capture the features visible at this range. A stunning bird to watch with flickering wings and 'bouncy' flight as it fought against a cold south-easterly.

Orcombe was cold and way too windy this morning, but the icy south-easterly produced a few bits and bobs on the sea - 1 Great Skua, 2 Common Scoter, 9 Teal, 3 Great Crested Grebe, 7+ Sandwich Tern and an Arctic Tern that I picked up a little later on thanks to a text from Lee.
On Orcombe itself - 1+ Chiffchaff, 1+ Willow Warbler, 3 Blackcap, 10+ Linnet, 1 Swallow and 1 Meadow Pipit.
Mudbank produced 80 Brent Geese. Three were Dark-bellied Brent Geese and I assume the rest were Pale-bellied Brent Geese - they certainly appeared to be, but the views were very poor as the birds swam off Cockle sands in very harsh light. Otherwise a drake Shoveler was an unusual record off there, and 9 Sandwich Tern were counted. One Whimbrel and 1 Redshank were the only waders of note.
Great Spotted Woodpecker - Maer Valley. A quick check for the Ring-necked Parakeet was unsuccessful. This is the third time in a row that I've failed to see it, which is a bit odd. Might it have gone?

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