The Safari wasn't going to look for the weekend's Surf Scoter with the usual cheapo Chinese scope; no, we brought the full monty HD/ED Japanese proper job from Base Camp for today's sessions. Pity the weather didn't think of upgrading too.
It wasn't too bad but visibility wasn't good beyond middle distance and the breeze had chopped up the water and there were plenty of white horses. Unfortunately the tide was out and the majority of the scoters were well out as well. We couldn't find anything of note apart from about 700 or so Common Scoters and half dozen Great Crested Grebes.
All was not lost though, looking further down the beach past our relatively birdless stretch the southern beach was crammed with birds. While looking through the multitude of assembled Oystercatchers and gulls three Grey Plovers (118, 43) flew through and within seconds of them whizzing by the scope settled on three larger longer billed waders, Bar Tailed Godwits (119, 44)...can't be bad!
At lunchtime it was a case of not wanting the warm spring sunshine...how mad is that! Everything to the south was far too hazy and bright to be able to distinguish anything but silhouettes and that's were almost all the scoters were and the sea was a lot calmer! Very few were to the north of us and those that were were illuminated perfectly if still a little distant. Shame we didn't have the larger number to work through.
The day had a last surprise for us. Wifey got home later than expected and we were making her a brew when she said she had some milk in the car. We went out and saw a Grey Wagtail heading east low over Base Camp (garden #22).
No pics today, we've been so busy we've not had a chance to notice anything around us other than the two sessions for the Surf Scoter, only the fourth in Lancashire since 1882 you know.
Where to next? We have a feeling the proper job scope will be taken to work again tomorrow.
In the meantime let us know what gave you the unexpected saving bonus in your outback.