Lesser Florican - August 2023

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Wednesday 30 May 2012

Seaford Head so far this week

Every morning this week has been spent on the patch with absolutely nothing of note at all. Thats it for the update!!

Monday 21 May 2012

Mega Courser 21/5/12

Sunday night 10.49pm - MEGA alert - CREAM-COLOURED COURSER Herefordshire. Bugger, I was working 9.30-5.30 on Monday.

Monday morning - Courser still present. My only option was to go into work and beg to have the day off so I could see this superb rarity. Luck was on my side and I was given permission for a day off, and the journey began.

I soon picked up Bob Self and then Adam Bowley and I drove 4 hours to Herefordshire arriving at Bradnor Hill just after midday after some great traffic conditions. About 20 minutes later we were all watching the Cream-colouredCourser (on the very scenic golf course) at about 30 metres range, allowing great scope views.

It soon got closer and photographic opportunities began, although the heat haze didn't help. We watched the bird for over an hour taking in it's strange feeding action and it's fantastic plumage. What a bird!!

After this, we drove back home via Hampshire and saw the adult female Woodchat Shrike at Martin Down NNR.

Great day with great company.

 Cream-coloured Courser - Herefordshire

Woodchat Shrike at Martin Down NNR

Wednesday 16 May 2012

Buchan Country Park 16/5/12

Watched 2 male Wood Warblers for about an hour this morning near the picnic area. They were both constantly singing less than 100 metres apart. Also present was a Spotted Flycatcher and a Grey Wagtail.

Corncrake - Iona, Isle of Mull 12/5/12

Tuesday 15 May 2012

Scotland 8/5/12

A weeks trip with Jake and Mick was very successful with a whole batch of yearticks for our UK yearlist. The areas we concentrated on were the Cairngorms and Mull. We flew up to Aberdeen airport and hired a car. The total number of bird species seen was 137.

Tonight and tomorrow night were spent at Mondhuie B&B in Nethy Bridge and is well recommended.

Ythan Estuary
King Eider - 1 drk
Green-winged Teal - 1 drk
Lots of different Terns, mainly Arctic.

White-billed Diver - 1 adult s/p
Great Northern Diver - 1
Red-throated Diver - 4 s/p
Great Skua - 1

Nr Lochindorb
Red Grouse - 2

Loch Garten RSPB
Capercaillee - 2 (both males displaying at 4pm!!!)
Osprey - 1
Crested Tit - 1
Red Squirrel - 1

 King Eider with Eider
 Slightly better views

Red Squirrel

Scotland 9/5/12

Good weather and good birds today. The whole day was spent in the Cairngorms clearing up on all targets, with a bonus Eagle added on.

Tulloch Moor
Black Grouse - 2

Abernethy Forest
Parrot Crossbill - 1
Common Crossbill - 8
Tree Pipit - 3
Redstart - 1

On route to Glenshee along A939
Black Grouse - 5
Red Grouse - lots
White-tailed Eagle - 1 juv
Ring Ouzel - 2
Dipper - 1
Peregrine - 1
Red Deer - 20+

Ptarmigan - 4
Merlin - 1
Wheatear - 4

Loch an Eilein Pine Marten Watch
Badger - 8
Red Deer - 20
Wood Mice - 2

 Red Grouse
 White-tailed Eagle juv



Scotland 10/5/12

Today we drove from Cairngorm down to Oban where we stayed the night at St Annes Guest House. Today was the wettest day with constant heavy rain all day.

Slavonian Grebe - 1 s/p
Osprey - 1
Redstart - 1 male

Black-throated Diver - 1 s/p
Red-throated Diver - 3 s/p
Red Grouse - 2
Snipe - 2
Red Squirrel - 1

Nr Fort William
Goosander - 1 drk
Hooded Crow - 5

Black Guillemot - 8
Hooded Crow - 2

Scotland 11/5/12

A much better day weather wise apart from the strong wind, which fortunately didn't effect the boat trip. We got the early Ferry from Oban across to Mull. Part of the day was spent seawatching then we drove down to Oran-Na-Mara B&B in Bunessan.

Black Guillemot - 10
Hooded Crow - 4

Oban - Craignure
White-tailed Eagle - 1 Adult

Ulva Ferry - Loch Na Keal - Boat Trip
White-tailed Eagle - 2
Golden Eagle - 1
Great Northern Diver - 2
Hen Harrier - 1
Buzzard - 4
Otter - 1

Calgary Bay
Manx Shearwater - 1000+
Great Skua - 2
Arctic Skua - 1
Rock Pipit - 2

Loch Scridain
White-tailed Eagle - 1
Great Northern Diver - 3

 Black Guillemot
 White-tailed Eagle (with fish)

Great Northern Diver

Scotland 12/5/12

A superb day, both bird and weather wise. All target species seen with the added bonus of a Long-tailed Skua on the return Ferry. Later on in the day we drove back to Cairngorm and stayed in Newtonmore at the Glen Hotel.

Iona, Isle of Mull
Corncrake - 3 + 3 more heard
Twite - 3
Glaucous Gull - 1 juv
Redpoll - 1
Cuckoo - 2
Grasshopper Warbler - 1
Sedge Warbler - 2
Arctic Skua - 1

Fionnphort - Craignure, Isle of Mull
Whooper Swan - 1

Craignure - Oban Ferry
Long-tailed Skua - 1 adult on sea
Puffin - 10
Black Guillemot - 10

 Long-tailed Skua
 Grasshopper Warbler

 Corncrake on Iona

Scotland 13/5/12

Ythan Estuary
Common Crane - 2
Osprey - 2
Avocet - 2
Little Gull - 3

Twite - 1

Murcar Links GC
Common Scoter - 200 +
Arctic Skua - 1
Red-throated Diver - 5 s/p

Scotland 14/5/12

Tulloch Moor
Whinchat - 2

Ythan Estuary
Eider - loads
Little Terns - 30+
Arctic Terns - 200+
Sanderling - 2 s/p
Osprey - 2

Loch of Strathbeg RSPB
Short-eared Owl - 1
Avocet - 2

Whinchat at Tulloch Moor

Friday 4 May 2012

East Sussex, Kent & Surrey 4/5/12

One of my best birding days today, birds were everywhere and with great variety as well. The day produced two Sussex lifers and 9 yearticks bringing my UK year total to 232. Myself and Bob Self spent the day together.

Anyway, I started the day off at Seaford Head with Bob Self where birds were in true abundance. The main highlights are:
Ring Ouzel - 1
Redstart - 7 (all fem)
Spotted Flycatcher - 7
Reed Warbler - 3
Tree Pipit - 2
Whinchat - 3
Wheatear - 12
Hobby - 2

Other good bits were:
Whitethroat - 50+
Lesser Whitethroat - 3
Blackcap - 9
Willow Warbler - 21
Yellow Wagtail - 11

Afterwards we went down the Cuckmere and met up with Jake and Mick where we joined forces for the day. The valley was alive with Swallows, literally hundreds, possibly reaching the thousand mark. Birds were sat all across the fields and bushes creating a spectacular sighting. A female Merlin passed overhead as well. No sign of the Temmincks.

Rye Harbour was next and we soon got onto the KENTISH PLOVER on the beach reserve. Other Waders included some lovely s/p Bar-tailed Godwits, Knots, Grey Plovers and a Sanderling, plus lots of Dunlin and Ringed Plover with a few Avocets mixed in.

However, at 11.30am the Gulls started going mad over Rye and I soon spotted 2 WHITE STORKS circling quite low and slowly drifting west until lost at 11.36am. A great sighting.

Back onto the Waders, a Curlew Sandpiper was spotted as well.

On the way to Dunge we popped into Scotney GP and saw 3 Black Terns, amongst a few Common Terns, and 3 Common Sandpipers were on the edge.

At Dunge, the movement of Warblers was huge, Whitethroats were moving in waves across the moat, and other bits included many Garden Warblers, Willow Warblers, both Pied and Spotted Flycatcher and some Wheatears.

Last but not least, we twitched Surrey and with good traffic we soon arrived in Banstead and saw the trip of 15 Dotterel. Most were full adults with some stunning females mixed in.

I would love to know the numbers of birds seen today, it was unreal. A great ending to a truly fantastic day, which will live long in the memory.

 Redstart, Wheatear and Hobby on Seaford Head

White Storks over Rye - Self Found

Wednesday 2 May 2012

Seaford Head 2/5/12

Totals for the morning are:

Whinchat - 2
Tree Pipit - 1
Whitethroat - 36 (all males on territory)
Lesser Whitethroat - 7
Willow Warbler - 4
Yellow Wagtail - 5
Redpoll - 2 (flew over)
Bar-tailed Godwit - 8 (flew over)
Blackcap - 3
Swift - 9
Swallow - 4
House Martin - 2

Whinchat on Seaford Head

Tuesday 1 May 2012

Seaford Head 1/5/12

A walk around Seaford Head this morning produced a few good birds, but not the rare ones i was expecting to see giving the perfect conditions.
Totals are:

Grasshopper Warbler 1 (reeling at first then eventually showed briefly)
Sedge Warbler 2 (both in full song)
Hobby 1
Lesser Whitethroat 4
Yellow Wagtail 6