Sidetracked !

Sunday, 24th March 2013

Today's highlight was the male White-spotted Bluethroat that showed well near the 'Obs Quarry', photographed here at lunchtime today after our regular birding fieldwork on the East Weares.


   


Jon and I began on the Weares at 8.00am and continued until 11.20 today. The wind chill was so bad during the first part of our walk - to Grove Point, that he wore two pairs of gloves, and every time I attempted to use the camera, and necessarily bare my right hand for just for a minute or two, things became so uncomfortable that I had to abandon shooting and warm up for quite some time! Once we had rounded the Point however, and escaped the full brunt of the north-easterly, conditions weren't too bad at all.

Today was one of those days when we knew, thanks to being able to monitor Martin's tweets on the mobile, that despite the unfavourable conditions, a semblance of migration was underway. Some interesting species had been seen elsewhere, Ring Ouzels, Black Redstarts, a Great White Egret off Chesil Beach and a Kentish Plover at Ferrybridge. We remained steadfast though, the intention always being, that unless something 'very noteworthy' turns up, we stay on patch and continue the 'Survey'.

 
Chiffchaff - several birds present at East Weares - March 24th, 2013

We reached thirty-one species on the Weares today the record number for a visit this year. We failed to see Dunnock or confirm Chaffinch.. no doubt because of the chilly 'breeze'. If the Mallard are still around, they too had gone to ground. Eight more species were added to our 2013 East Weares List: Common Scoter, Gannet, Sparrowhawk, Mediterranean Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Chiffchaff, Meadow Pipit and Rock Pipit. We would expect to see all of these birds here several or many times over the twelve-month.

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