Wednesday, 25 August 2010

If only one more day

The Safari woke up this morning to – calm – NOOOOOO. We wanted another day or two of heavy weather to bring those lovely sea birds in, one day was good, at least for others, but we really could have done with a bit more.
A bright sunny morning on Patch 1 gave us PPEM sunning herself after a cooler than of recent night. Would have been an excellent photo opportunity as the sun was rising over the fells to the east for those with a long lens.
Nothing else really noteworthy but the Great Spotted Woodpecker revealed its presence and several Robins were ‘tic’ing or doing that autumnal ‘trim phone’ type call. A Wren blasted out song all the time we were there. And we have another pic of the rather large mushroom for you, this time with a large dog to scale it by.

The calm weather had really put the mockers on Patch 2. A few gulls faffed around on the beach with even fewer Oystercatchers, not counted today – hundreds were way, way to the south on the huge expanse of beach, a very low, low tide this morning.
Heard a smashing expression the other day regarding gulls that’s new in the vocabulary – ‘Connoisseur Gulls’ meaning those ‘tasty odd ones out’– just brilliant – luv it!
Looking straight down the sea wall with the scope we could see the Ainsdale ranger’s base on the South-side where JD had the Pomerine Skua on the beach yesterday, couldn’t pick it out sat there this morning! Crackin pic of it in the rain storm – the rain was that bad! Now you know why we pegged it back inside.
Our top bird of the morning was a Curlew pecking about in one of the gutters – not often we see these feeding on this part of the beach, normally they are just fly-bys. Talking of fly-bys three Cormorants went past towards the roost on the sand bar followed closely by the Shag – its becoming a long stayer! Three Sandwich Terns sat on the beach with a fourth not too far away, maybe one day another species of tern could sit with them…
Out at sea the calm conditions were good for seeing mammals but there weren’t any. A couple of single Common Scoters were all we could glean. Still good conditions at lunchtime but this time there was a distant Grey Seal. A few Sandwich Terns did a bit of diving and one of the fishermen caught a small Flounder and promptly moaned that the seals have eaten all the fish and that it was better in the 50s and 60s when the seal population was much lower than today and that ‘something needs to be done about them’. Good job we didn’t tell him there were a few Cormorants out in the distance too. Freshwater fishermen have to kill Cormorants because cows don’t eat grass! Cows now eat fishmeal more than grass which is made from none quota-ed small fish therefore there are less fish in the sea so some of the Cormorants have moved inland and started eating Roach much to the annoyance of people who fish for fun! But its still all the seals fault! It’s never the fisherman’s fault they can’t catch fish it’s always because there’s just too much wildlife eating them!
Two Eiders were rocked by the swell as they slept with a few young gulls and that was about as exciting as it got.

Where to next? Yet more patch stuff, but will we get another unexpected patch tick?

In the meantime let us know if it's calmed down in your outback.


Warren Baker said...

Dont worry Dave, you'll get the crap weaher back soon. Plus a patch tick :-)

Fishermen and shooters - the same ignoarant twats!!

Monika said...

Fisherman politics are crazy - we've got a lot of that around here and it gets pretty intense with our salmon-eating endangered whales as you can imagine. It's intense on both sides right now as there have been lots of seiners and gillnetters and lots of whales during recent weeks. The good news is we are having a record high salmon run, so hopefully there is enough for all, and enough to help numbers increase down the road.

Anyway enough of that rant, but interesting tidbit about the cormorants moving inland.