Saturday, 13 April 2013

was lucky to catch this bird on the last day of its extended stay, as the weather broke and spring finally arrived. fair isle style views of a cracking male, easily the best of the bunch from the influx. been 17 years since my last in the uk, the cuckmere bird. best thing i've seen on the isle of wight.

did an hour and a half at seaford in the evening, disappointing in a south wind and rain. nice to see a strong movement of kittiwakes but very little else, best being 4 arctic skuas and 2 bonxies.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

3 pairs of garganey at west rise. the drakes were 'singing' which i'd not heard before, a really unusual sound. 2 black-tailed godwits there also. arrived just too late, ALL the herring gulls of eastbourne were up but i couldn't find the culprit, probably missed summink big and i dont mean a buzzard. yesterday there were still 2 water pipits and 1 scan rock pipit.

2 black-necked grebes at arlington (i looked for the 5 yesterday but they'd gone) and a sum plum dunlin on the dam. strange to see redwings and fieldfares still hanging around and singing.

yeah loads of pics but i love garganey

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

at last a pair of garganey at west rise! the rain brought down a few hirundines and a dunlin flew over. water pipits/scan rock pipits present but impossible to get an accurate count on the number as they were coming up from all sides of the lake. nice to see 8 species of passerine feeding together on the bank.

got to arlington after the rain cleared. it was still and quiet with virtually nothing on the water but in the distance i spied a flock of 5 birds, i knew what i wanted these to be, and when i got to the dam for a closer look surprisingly they were:-). i wondered if these would be an indicator of what was happening on the coast...

wandered down to the beach in the evening to collect some food for the fish and ended up staying 2 and half hours. best seawatch i've had for years with the highlights being 141 little gulls and an incredible 26 small grebes (seaford had another 15 in the morning). distance/light/sleeping was not helpful, but i thought the first 3 were black-necks and the rest either slavs or grebe sp, biggest flock 9. little gulls were close in and superb, only wish the breakwater was open. evening seawatches are what i missed most on the iow, they just don't happen over there.

Monday, 8 April 2013

bit of a crap day, hard to find new stuff even when it feels like things should be happening. seawatching at seaford wasn't as good as they had it yesterday, more dabbling ducks but less of everything else. year ticks were arctic skua, arctic tern, common tern, velvet scoter and swallow (!) and several porpoise went east. at west rise there were 2 water pipits, scan rock pipit, yellow wag and a few white wags. i seem to have spent most of my time looking for garganey this spring so was good to finally catch up with one even if it was in the middle of arlington reservoir.