Friday, 8 March 2013

Not a Roman nose in sight

The Safari got out onto Patch 2 as soon as the rain had stopped again today – didn’t fancy an early morning soaking and the visibility would have been even more U/S than it was. . A good number of Common Scoters were all lined up nicely broadside for a change and weren’t too far out today. Just as well most of the scoters were close in, about 5-600 of them with more black dots in the not too distant mist. The tide had just turned and the stiff offshore breeze had the water chopped up a bit so the birds were bouncing around a bit making studying them a little bit more difficult than it could have been.
We did a few scans of them and although the yellow noses of the males stood out well against the grey of the sea but there was no sign of any with a rather larger bill.
Two Red Throated Divers sat close together as did two Great Crested Grebes, a Razorbill dropped in amongst the closest of the scoters giving good views and a drake Eider flew past before disappearing into the all-to-near mist. 
A medium sized passerine flew south well out to sea, Skylark/Song Thrush? type thingy far too far for an ID though.
At lunchtime the tide had dropped and the birds drifted out with it making them on the limits of visibility. Only the usual Common Scoters in the scoter flock but at least we upped the Great Crested Grebe count to a huge three.
What will happen next week is that the Surf Scoter will be so far offshore and only just identifiable with the cheapo Chinese scope now that we've returned the proper-job one back to Base Camp!
Where to next? Early morning Winter Thrushes Survey tomorrow.
In the meantime let us know what very successfully avoiding you, aided and abetted by the weather, in your outback

1 comment:

Monika said...

Surf scoters are one species I have seen regularly over on this side of the pond, though they're numbers are starting to dwindle as more move away - another sign of the coming of spring!

I realized today I never answered your question on my blog - my main lens for the new camera is an 18-300mm zoom, an upgrade from the 70-300mm zoom that got stolen.

Looks like we're all tied up at 119? It never ceases to amaze me how close we remain throughout the year!