Friday, 29 October 2010

The darkness

The Safari isn’t referring to an early 21st Century rock(ish) band with noted for their high pitch lead vocalist but rather to the fact that it barely managed to get light today. Grim, dreary and grey is the only way to describe the morning.
The only thing we got early doors was the Peregrine, it had moved round a bit overnight and was again sheltering very close to the comms conduit, although there wasn’t excessive rain last night and the gentle southerly breeze was extremely mild. Indeed the 13ºC pre-dawn temperature is way way above the +4ºC ‘panic’ climate change increase for an October minimum temperature. Although with only a couple of days to go October, Blackpool at least, is set to be about as average as average gets. But don’t be fooled – take a look here at what the rest of the world has been up to so far this year.

Just feel a bit sorry for those living in central Norway – what happened there?
Patch 2’s lunchtime visit gave us excellent views of some of the 19 Sanderlings dancing along the water’s edge. One had us sniggering; we know you shouldn’t laugh at others misfortunes it skittered along it seem to trip over its own feet and did a couple of somersaults before righting itself and carrying on as if nothing had happened. Only ever see a bird suffer in this way once before, many years ago at the nature reserve, when a Little Grebe was bowled over and over trying to fly in to a very strong wind.
22 Oystercatchers completed the wader interest. Out at sea disinterest was provided by 50 or so Common Scoters, the black blob monotony almost alleviated by the appearance of first one then a second Common Gull – Cor gee wow!
Yet again the works gardens came up trumps. A Dunnock flitted, or should that be ‘flut’, in to the shrubbery where a couple of a Blackbirds turned the woodchip looking for tasty morsels. Out on the grass nearby was a very nicely marked Pied Wagtail, sat much further away in the far corner was a Lapwing. WOT a Lapwing on our lawns!!!! Got to get a pic of that chance-in-a-million event. Get the scope set up and just getting the focus right before removing camera from the pocket our Lapwing turns, as if by a magic, into a bally Pigeon...a) shoulda gone to Specsavers (other opticians are available) and b) shoulda got a the pic to show you just how Lapwing-like it actually was!!! – honest!!! If we ever see it again we’ll try for the pic.
Where to next? A bit of more distant safari with a couple or three year ticks thrown in might be nice for the weekend. Anyone know the whereabouts of any Waxwings?
In the meantime let us know what’s had you fooled in your outback.
Had a snigger when CP got his old notebook outlast night, seemed somewhat familiar, don’t you think?
Late Edit - Not sure how we forgot but we did neglect to mention the two Foxes we saw playing on Patch 1 late last night...really is about time we got them in the garden here at Base Camp.


Warren Baker said...

It was an awful dreary day here too Dave, in that gloom even I had trouble distinguishing pigeons from Lapwings ;-)

DaveOnFidalgo said...

It was like that here yesterday, but today it brightened up. The sun even came out for a while so don't despair. I have been playing with a BirdCam and it doesn't do well in dim light. Looks like it will be clear tonight, but that also means cold.