Monday, 29 March 2010

BST (Bally Sleepy Today)

After yesterday’s marathon hike of 5 or more miles the safari struggled to roll out of the pits this morning. So it was a foreshortened, in both time and distance, Patch 1 safari this morning (back in the dark too). Nothing to report other than the usual residents were all in fine voice particularly the Dunnocks.
By the time we hit Patch 2 a chilly wind had struck up and the promised rain/sleet had started – it was straight back to winter out there. The rising tide was swiftly covering the beach and 19 Sanderlings were making the most of what the tide might offer them. Most of the 72 Oystercatchers just stood crowded close together against the cold waiting to go to roost. A Penguin was seen stood on the water’s edge among a group of Herring Gulls. It waddled a few steps up the beach when the water lapped round its ankles. Penguin? - you ask – no, sadly, it was an oiled Guillemot (132, 67) and those gulls had more than a passing interest in it, hopefully they would wait for its passing rather than set about it while it was still alive. Hardly seems appropriate to year tick it really. Thankfully It has been a good while since we’ve noticed any oiled birds and we hope this isn’t a sign of bad things to come – not good to have a patch of oil lurking out there at this crucial time of year…or any other time of year for that matter. The Common Scoter flockette has dwindled to just 9 birds – they are a species that is at serious risk of oiling, with a bit of luck the majority that winter in the bay will be long gone by now.
During a short, cold, wet and miserable lunchtime session the only thing new was a/the Razorbill back roughly were it was at the end of last week. Really hoping this wintery wet stuff doesn’t last too long – we were starting to get used to the warm sunshine. Having said that it always snows around now, manys a time on the nature reserve we used to feel sorry for the Sand Martins huddled together on a fence wire in a snow storm wishing they hadn’t left Africa so dang early. Fortunately it was usually on a few days worth of iffy weather before the sun regained the upper hand. At the moment it looks like a cold, wet and windy week ahead. Doh…if Monika has anything like decent migration weather she’ll sail past us…
Where to next?? Big tides and a gusty SW wind mean there could be a chance of finding something good being flooded off the marshes round the corner – watch this space for some midweek lunchtime excitement.
In the meantime let us know how bad the weather has turned in your outback


Warren Baker said...

Its back to February Dave! Maybe the weather's just teasing us, and we are soon going to be in a long settled spell. :-)

Monika said...

Don't worry, Dave - it's cold, wet, and windy here too!