Friday, 25 October 2013

It's all appenin next week

The Safari was once again thwarted by deluginous weather this morning for a Patch 2 point even attempting to go out in that!
We did get out later but more about that in a mo. 
But first we have an announcement of some events being run locally to tie in with BBC Autumnwatch which is coming from the top end of Safari-land this year, one of our favourite places we've been visiting since the early 1970's.

'Dolphin' watches with our Seawatch Foundation local coordinator SMcC
Tues  29th   10 - 12   Red Bank Road lower walk
Wed  30th     3 - 5     Norbreck Castle lower walk with SM - Might do that one with her
Thu  31st      9 - 11   Norbreck Castle lower walk with SM 
Fri     1st     11 - 1     Gynn Square by the Hole in Wall cafe with SM - Might do that one with her
Be sure to dress for the weather and bring binoculars if you have them.
Tue 29th  12 - 1  Mirror ball rockpooling and beach combing
Wed 30th 12 - 2  Mirror ball dolphin watch
Thu 31st    2 - 3  Mirror ball rockpooling and beach combing
Again dress for the weather and bring a fine meshed net and your buckets and spades.
On the subject of the beach we had a scope of the sea at lunchtime but there wasn't much to see. Similar numbers of Common Scoters to yesterday were seen and a Great Crested Grebe was the only other bird out there.
In the absence of anything feathery on the water we had a wander onto the beach. The tide was coming in and we didn't have long. Our usual area was already inaccessible so we had a shuffy elsewhere and worthwhile it turned out to be. The pools were a bit murky but there was a bit of strand-line composed mostly of Pod Razors, Common Razors and Sand Mason Worm cases. But interspersed were a few other interesting things, namely several Necklace Shells of varying sizes a couple of which were covered with Hedgehog Hydroid.
Also spotted was the claw of an Edible Crab something we rarely see on this end of the coast. Looking closely at the shells covered in the spiky hydroid we noticed that some of the ones weren't Necklace Shells but were something else, it's a large species of Tower Shell but which one. We found two and both were broken.

The drive home gave us a Red Admiral wend its merry way towards the coast, inverts were out at work this arvo  too with a Common Carder Bee visiting the last of the flowers and a pair of Eristalis Drone Flies playing chase me chase me.  Our evening walk with Frank is becoming a dark affair and after tomorrow will be fully dark as summertime ends. Recently we noticed this plant growing in a crack in the brickwork, it's a beautiful colour and reminds us Purple Sprouting Broccoli - it's actually a species of Sow Thistle and had to be taken with the flash 

Plenty of Magpies were going to roost and we heard the Goldcrest again. On the walk back down the hill a Sparrowhawk whipped over our heads. But surprise of the day was the Peregrine sitting up tucked in between the cables obviously aware of the weather that's on the way!
Where to next? There might be a large enough window in the weather tomorrow morning to get our first Winter Thrushes Survey completed, hope so.
In the meantime let us know if your outback stayed dry today.

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