The Safari did another fruitless two minute Goldfinch survey this morning. It's 10 days since we did our last one and being housebound during that time we've had plenty of opportunity to keep an eye on the feeders. In all that time we've only had one very brief visit by a single Goldfinch, the feeders have remained almost untouched in all that time. We've lost yet more 'connecting' trees and shrubs from neighbouring gardens but there must be more to the dearth of birds than that, most likely the unseasonably mild weather is providing plentiful natural foods. A few days ago the warmest UK November night ever was recorded although it was in Northern Ireland and not within the Central England Temperature recording area whose record stretches back to 1659, it is possible that there has been a higher night-time November temperature in Northern Ireland some time in the past 350 years that wasn't recorded but that seems rather unlikely.
OK so we didn't see any Goldfinches in the garden, or any other species for that matter, but we did spot a garden mega flying over, a Common Gull, Garden #41, the first here since 2011, not that common here then! It does go to show what the storm 'Abigail' had shuffled about.
We had a little trip out when Wifey suggested a quick walk in the fresh air, hopefully between downpours, before a swift dash round the supermarket. We ended up choosing a walk along the prom to the north of us, all other possible venues were probably going to be a bit too muddy to contemplate after the recent days of torrential rain.
Wifey soon spotted a Pied Wagtail on the beach but out on a much calmer sea than yesterday we couldn't find much out there.
A little further on there were a couple of waders roosting on the shingle we pointed out to Wifey. How many species can you see?
Up by the Leaning Tower of Rossall a plonker with a large dog walked on to the beach only yards from them but fortunately walked the other way; only to flush a smaller unseen flock moments later, as if they haven't had enough to contend with with the atrocious weather without being forced to waste precious energy avoiding an unnecessary disturbance.
If you stay on the prom they'll come quite close provided you don't make sudden movements. The tide was dropping quickly so this Sanderling was a little further way than we'd have like for a decent pic.
A further look out to sea gave us a flight of five Red Breasted Mergansers go by across the face of an incoming rainstorm - time to make a quick exit and hit the shop!
Where to next? More wind and torrential rain forecast overnight and tomorrow so it'll be watching the bird-free feeders and not much else sadly.
In the meantime let us know who's avoiding the rainstorms in your outback.