Please note that this is my own personal blog and therefore the views and opinions expressed, although in no way intended to be controversial, are not necessarily those shared by my employers Abbotsbury Tourism Ltd. and Ilchester Estates . All photos are © Steve Groves unless otherwise credited.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

'Blowvember 2'

Well I seem to have partly solved the problem I was having uploading photos by re-sizing them before uploading them (even though this is supposed to happen automatically). Unfortunately though it's not working perfectly as it only let me upload two photos. However I now think for the meantime at least I shall persevere with the blog rather than terminating it and starting another elsewhere. So here is last week's post updated with photos...

Swannery birding highlights of the week...


19th to 25th November 2012

There was really only one day this week when it wasn't either blowing a gale or pouring with rain or more often than not both! This made birding very difficult, not just because it was virtually impossible to keep optics dry (and find somewhere sheltered to scan the lagoon) but because all the waterfowl were sheltering over the far side of the embayment under Chester's Hill or even worse round the corner beyond Shipmoor Point. This made picking out anything unusual extremely tricky.
Although rather distant, the numbers and variety of ducks present were pretty much as last week (see my last post), but hopes of rediscovering the Long-tailed Duck came to nothing. There were however still at least seven Scaup most days and the first winter Common Scoter reappeared but the highlight was a Goosander (a first winter/female). A single 'Dark-bellied' Brent was the only 'wild' goose among around a hundred 'feral' Canadas and the regular Greylag.
Just a few of the several hundred Common Coot on The West Fleet.
Despite the stormy conditions there were no real hoped for seabirds blown in, the only gulls of note being an adult Yellow-legged Gull and increasing numbers of 'Meds' often more abundant now than Commons and Black-headed Gulls.
Waders comprised of about a hundred Lapwing, several Snipe and a few Redshank and Dunlin, while the only raptor of note was again the regular male Marsh Harrier.

Common Snipe in the meadow.

The withybeds were full of calling Goldcrests along with several Chiffchaffs but in the unfavourable conditions they stayed deep in cover and trying to find anything more unusual was again a thankless task.

Well I'll try and blog next Sunday or I may just throw my laptap across the this space!

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