Thursday, 22 August 2013

Trying to count the uncountable

The Safari had a good old watch over Patch 2 this morning. Not a ripple, superb visibility but nothing of note to see.
On the beach however there were a lot of distant and uncountable Sanderlings, a few of the nearer ones were Dunlin. Yesterday MJ and Young Un AB had counted about 1000! That was before they'd been further down the road and found a Green Sandpiper which they let us know about a few minutes too late to be able to twitch it...darned house renovations It's about time we had another year bird in our challenge with Monika - she's moved in to a new home recently so that's probably slowed her down a bit.
Another look at Patch 2 on the rising tide didn't produce the goods either just a Grey Seal away in the distance and a few blogging, but not fishing, Sandwich Terns.
We had a group of  youngsters on their pond dipping and invertebrate hunt this arvo and as we were getting the kit out of the store we noticed a large number of Starlings on the green obvious to the punters mooching around finding their tables in the sun for a bite of lunch.
There's about 3-400 in the pic and this was less than half of them!. We quietly walked a bit further on down the patch to try to get nmore of them in but a Sparrowhawk whizzed in in an attack and put them all to flight. All the diners saw the them whoosh in to the air and ball up but none of them spotted the Sparrowhawk.
An ant's nest was producing winged adults and this had attracted a split-off group of Starlings.
You can just make out an ant in the beak of the nearest one.
The little ones found a nice selection of beasties including this rather large queen bee, we think it's a Cuckoo Bee sp due to the smokey wings...those clever iSpotters will no doubt know.
The abdomen was white but stripy and well pointed.
Where to next? With news this arvo of a couple of Bottle Nosed Dolphins just over the river on the South-side seen while we were with the kids...that'd be why the phone was going bananas in the pocket!...we deffo be having a good look at Patch 2 early on but we've no chance at lunchtime.
In the meantime let us know what's been uncountable in your outback today.

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