Thursday, 21 April 2011

Couldn’t make it three days in a row!

The Safari was surprised to hear the Blackcap coming from the wrong direction this morning. The house on the corner has a small front garden which has two mature Crab Apple trees in it and it was from one of those our little friend was singing.
Up the hill and round the corner the usual Golden Triangle Blackcap was giving it welly in a duet with a Song Thrush.
A male Sparrowhawk weaved between the houses and over the gardens at the speed of sound, crikey was it shifting!
Moving on towards the Butterfly Zone before we arrived we could hear the Chiffchaff and the Blackcap before we arrived. In the park proper we had a new Blackcap half way up the hill and the now regular one in the wet bottom corner, the Coal Tit was in the conifers nearby too.
Out on a short pre-work Patch 1 the tide was well out and it was very, very hazy out at sea. On the beach we counted 247 Oystercatchers and no other waders, three Swallows had the Oystercatchers ducking as they skimmed the beach going the ‘wrong way’, south! Going the right way were about 10 Meadow Pipits heard calling as they passed overhead.

Just behind the ineffectual surf was a Guillemot and a bit further out a big bull Grey Seal stuck his big Roman nose out for a brief look-see then sank back beneath the surface.
Then followed a very enjoyable morning spent with a group of young families exploring the sands and rockpools. Lots of goodies as you can see from the pics and just about the biggest fish we’ve ever netted during one of these events, not a Codling we think, what it is though we're not sure. Possibly a juvenile Whiting or Pollack as it doesn't seem to have a barbel under its chin.

At lunchtime the tide was well on the rise and the haze was even worse than earlier. A lone female Common Scoter was all we could muster in a 20 minute watch.

A hot hour was spent at the nature reserve, its not far short of 40C warmer than this time four months ago! We were on a specific mission but that fell flat on its face as what we were after seems to have long gone. There was enough time for a short walk to the Container Hide and on the way down we heard two Lesser Whitethroats. At the hide wesaw two Reed Warblers giving each other a chase through the reed bed and at one point all the gulls went up but we didn't find the culprit.

Where to next? Could be anywhere now it’s holiday time.

In the meantime let us know what monsters of the deep are lurking in your outback.


Amila Kanchana said...

Hi Davo,Interesting fish and starfish!

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Damn - left nature reserve 5 mins too soon as a White Stork (and not the escaped one from Yorks) flew pst the hide just after we'd left - wondered what had put the gulls up!!!...

Hi Amila - we aren't sure what species the fish is (its in the cod family but which one of several possibilities), the starfish are very common and get washed up in their countless thousands after storms. also found a baby one about 7mm across this arvo.