Monday, 12 September 2011

Inland Seawatching

High winds and a high tide which swamped the saltmarshes gave scoping the birds of the estuary a seawatching feel around midday.

No true seabirds noted, though the visit's highlight, pintails, are most often seen in stormy conditions down here. One was consorting with 30 wigeon in the Gull Bank area, and another three were seen heading South a little later.

A surprisingly scarce visitor to Aldcliffe these days ... I think these are the first pintails I've seen here in three or four years.

The lowlight was letting an in-flight wagtail escape identification. On tail length it seemed to be a flava wag, but as I didn't get any plumage detail on it, and as the howling wind masked any calls a probable year-tick got away.

Singles of greenshank, green sandpiper and were also seen.  Two shovelers and three tufted ducks were at Freeman's Pools.


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