Tuesday, 31 December 2013

last post........

Black throated Diver and a Velvet Scoter passed Whitburn Obs in 3 hours this morning. A good finish to my years sea watching with yet another Black throat logged. Today saw an increase in passage of auks and Kitts on a SSE wind. As expected my Obs year list finished on 161 much better than i had hoped for at the start of the year and it all starts again tomorrow !

I was joined by Hoggie and Walter and this is what we saw today in order of appearance

Tuesday 31st December 07.55-11.00 SSW3-4 cloud cover

Common Scoter 3n 2s
Black h Gull 1n 46s
Red br Merganser 1s
Eider 1n 1s
Cormorant 2s
Kittiwake 76n
Gannet 18n 1s
Shag 1s
Guillemot 360n
Scan Herring Gull 1s
Fulmar 4n 11s
Red th Diver 6n 2s
Razorbill 3n
Velvet Scoter 1n
Porpoise 2
Grey Heron 1s
Black th Diver 1s

Monday, 30 December 2013

going out with a bang

Juvenile Glaucous Gull, 2 Brent Geese and 3 Blue Fulmars passed Whitburn Obs by 10.15 this morning
Its nice to be finishing the year with a bit of quality and the juvenile Glaucous Gull that went south at 8.20 was quality. Its not often we see Blue Fulmars at Whitburn so 3 different birds was exceptional
My Obs year list is stuck on a credible 161 and only tomorrow to go before we all start again
This is what i saw today in order of appearance

Monday 30th December08.00-10.15 S4 cloud cover

Black h Gull 20s
Great black backed Gull 360s
Scan Herring Gull 2s
Guillemot 13n 13s
Shag 1n 3s
Eider 1s
Glaucous Gull juv 1s at 08.20
Fulmar 2n 29s
Kittiwake 20n 1s
Red th Diver 10n
Gannet 7n 7s
Cormorant 1n 1s
Common Scoter 7s
Great crested Grebe 2n
Blue Fulmar 3s
Brent Goose 2s pb

Sunday, 29 December 2013

things can only get ............

15 Red throated Divers were the only birds of note passed the Obs this morning on a very quiet sea watch.

Sunday 29th December 08.00-10.30 W1-2 part cloud calm sea

Cormorant 1n 4s
Black h Gull 9n 15s
Kittiwake 11s
Guillemot 8n 11s
Eider 7n 8s
Red th Diver 8n 7s
Common Scoter 1n 10s
Fulmar 7n 1s
Wigeon 3n
Teal 3n
Porpoise 1
Shag 10s

Saturday, 28 December 2013

calm after the storm

Black throated and 3 Great northern Divers went north past Whitburn Obs by 10.30 this morning It was a very calm start to the day following yesterdays storm and the light WSW wind gave little encouragement for birds to move. I was thinking about packing in when at 10.15 a very close Black throated Diver went north at the same time as 3 very distant Great northern Divers as our run of scarcer divers continued, it would have been slim pickings without them
Nobody else was in today to share the experience, the other highlight in the calm conditions were at least 10 Porpoise feeding offshore
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Saturday 28th December 07.55-10.30 WSW1-2 cloud cover flat calm sea

Black h Gull 3n 17s
Porpoise 10
Guillemot 2n 31s
Kittiwake 1n 3s
Red th Diver 5n 20s
Common Scoter 4n 22s
Fulmar 1n 4s
Eider 9n 2s
Cormorant 4s
Shag 14s
Gannet 6n
Great n Diver 3n
Black th Diver 1n

Friday, 27 December 2013

like a hurricane.........

A Great northern Diver and Blue Fulmar were the highlights past Whitburn Obs this morning in stormie conditions
Magic Mark made it in today and we saw a good variety of species in exciting conditions
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Friday 27th December 07.55-10.30 SW5-6 then 7, rain at times

Black h Gull 13n 50s
Eider 4s
Great black backed Gull 1240s
Cormorant 2n 6s
Shag 4s
Kittiwake 1n 20s
Fulmar 2n 69s
Red th Diver 3n 1s
Turnstone 3s
Mallard 1s
Scan Herring Gull 9s
Dunlin 20s
Guillemot 21n 5s
Porpoise 1
Knot 2s
Common Scoter 8n 6s
Teal 7n 25s
Lapwing 5s
Gannet 2n 4s
Great n Diver 1s
Blue Fulmar 1s
Pintail 1s

Thursday, 26 December 2013

roll on 1st jan

2 Black throated and 29 Red throated Divers passed Whitburn Obs in 2 hours this morning. It was very quiet in a light south westerly not much going on but our run of Black throated Divers continued. Bet they are hard to find come the 1st of  January
On my own again today and this is what i saw in order of appearance

Thursday 26th December 08.00-10.00 SW1

Black h Gull 2n 39s
Eider 2n 1s
Kittiwake 1n
Red th Diver 5n 24s
Cormorant 4n 15s
Common Gull 2n 15s
Shag 1n 5s
Fulmar 4n 2s
Teal 2s
Black th Diver 2n
Guillemot 1n 1s
Common Scoter 8n 4s
Shelduck 1s

Monday, 23 December 2013

santa's little surprises....

2 Little Gulls a Bonxie and a Black throated Diver passed Whitburn Obs this morning.The weather was wild and it threw up a few early xmas surprises with the Little Gulls and a Bonxie. Add to that 3 species of Diver and a Blue Fulmar and you've got yourself a canny sea watch
Nobody else was daft enough to be in the Obs this morning but I'm glad i was and this is what i saw in order of appearance

Monday 23rd December 08.00-11.00 SSW 3-4 then 4-5 Cloud cover and heavy rain at times

Black h Gull 1n 24s
Red th Diver 17n 4s
Gannet 71n 9s
Guillemot 57n 15s
Common Scoter 12n 4s
Turnstone 10s
Bonxie 1n
Greater black backed Gull 1000+s
Cormorant 1s
Kittiwake 5n 5s
Eider 3n 1s
Black throated Diver 1n
Fulmar 1n 47s
Great n Diver 1n
Scan Herring Gull 1s
Little Gull 2s 1ad 1 1st w
Porpoise 1s
and a Blue Fulmar south

Sunday, 22 December 2013

oh no you didnt

Black throated Diver south past Whitburn Obs was the only highlight on today's sea watch. It was cut short as i have a panto to get to at lunchtime with the grand bairns....oh yes i do...
Magic Mark and Pink Floyd joined me today and this is what we saw in order of appearance

Sunday 22nd December 07.55-10.05 SW2

Black h Gull 3n 26s
Fulmar 6n 11s
Cormorant 4s
Common Scoter 4n 19s
Eider 5s
Red th Diver 13n 23s
Turnstone 10s
Kittiwake 14n
Black th Diver 1s (bringing this years total to date to 35)
Gannet 5n 1s
Shag 1n
Grey Heron 1s

Saturday, 21 December 2013

bah humduck

a Great northern Diver passed Whitburn Obs this morning but little else of quality, no decent ducks today and Diver passage was down. I was joined by Pink Floyd and later New Mark and this is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 21st December 07.55-10.45 SW3-4

Black h Gull 3n 8s
Scan Herring Gull 3s
Greater black backed Gull 752s
Guillemot 12n 9s
Cormorant 3n 8s
Turnstone 14s
Shag 5s
Red th Diver 22n 12s
Common Scoter 9n 8s
Fulmar 7n 5s
Kittiwake 4n 32s
Gannet 6n 4s
Great n Diver 1n
Great crested Grebe 1s

Friday, 20 December 2013

Ho Ho Ho

Black throated Diver, Velvet Scoter and Long tailed Duck passed Whitburn Obs this morning. Ho Ho Ho is what most local birders would be saying if you told them you were going sea watching in a south westerly late in December, but it proved a decent watch with loads of Red throats passing and a handfull of decent ducks, and i wasn't the only one who thought it was worth a look as magic mark turned up as well
Here is what we saw in order of appearance

Friday 20th December 07.40-11.15 SW2

Black headed Gull 2n 42s
Cormorant 9s
Eider 6n 11s
Guillemot 49n 77s
Red th Diver 20n 58s
Common Scoter 1n 42s
Kittiwake 4n 1s
Turnstone 8s
Gannet 5n 2s
Black th Diver 1n
Fulmar 3n 1s
Velvet Scoter 1n
Scan Herring Gull 1s
Shelduck 1n
Brent Goose pb 1n
Grey Heron 2n
Shag 11n
Long tailed Duck 1n
Golden Plover 50s
Goosander 1s

Monday, 16 December 2013

blue blue christmas

Black throated Diver and Blue Fulmar passed Whitburn Obs this morning. It was cold with a strong westerly this morning my hands and feet were blue and so was the mornings highlight a blue Fulmar slowly making its was north. Off work using up some holidays so what else could i do with my time, xmas shopping or sea watching no competition really
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Monday 16th December 08.00-10.45 W2-3 full cloud cover

Eider 2n 9s
Cormorant 7s
Scan Herring Gull 1s
Common Scoter 3n 13s
Black h Gull 1n 3s
Red th Diver 7n 25s
Fulmar 6n 3s
Blue Fulmar 1n
Guillemot 12n 4s
Gannet 2n 1s
Kittiwake 1n
Turnstone 1s
Purple Sandpiper 1s
Porpoise 2s
Black th Diver 1n

Saturday, 14 December 2013

Glauc steals the show

A juvenile Glaucous Gull and 2 Great northern Divers passed Whitburn in 3 hours this morning. Magic Mark and myself were in from first light and Hoggie joined us later. We were expecting a good passage of Gulls flying south into the wind and hoping for a goodie amongst them,  the Glaucous Gull didn't disappoint flying south then north then south again and lingering
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 14th December 07.45-10.45 SSW 2-3

Black h Gull 3n 33s
Greater black backed Gull 580s
Common Scoter 4n 2s
Red th Diver 15n 28s
Cormorant 2n 3s
Shag 18s
Great northern Diver 2n
Great crested Grebe 1s
Kittiwake 5n
Guillemot 37n 25s
Wigeon 1s
Gannet 30n
Scan Herring Gull 2s
Redshank 4s
Turnstone 4s
Razorbill 1n
Glaucous Gull 1s juv
Fulmar 1n 6s
Grey Heron 1s
Teal 5n
Eider 1s
Porpoise 1n

Friday, 13 December 2013

unlucky for some ?......

A Black throated Diver and 42 Red throated Divers passed Whitburn in 3 hours this morning. Friday the 13th in December is probably not the best day for a sea watch but luckily for me i managed to connect with a movement of Divers, otherwise it was dire
Here is what i saw in order of  appearance

Friday 13th December 07.50-10.50 S2-3 mainly with cloud cover

Cormorant 8s
Black h Gull 1n 6s
Guillemot 4n 6s
Red th Diver 10n 32s including "flocks" of 9 and 10
Common Scoter 2n 3s
Kittiwake 8n 5s
Scan Herring Gull 3s
Fulmar 2n 3s
Gannet 1n 1s
Black th Diver 1n
Wigeon 1n
Mallard 2n
Eider 2s
Pink footed Goose 1 in the Obs field

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Diver hat-trick

Black throated and Great northern Diver passed Whitburn this morning and 2 Long tailed Ducks. Its not every sea watch you see 3 species of  Diver so i was very happy when the Black throated went north to give me my hat-trick on what was otherwise a quiet sea watch. Very few gulls were about but you cant expect a lot on a south westerly. Hoggie and Walter put in an appearance dreaming of Ivory Gulls
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Sunday 8th December 07.45-10.35 SW2-3

Teal 15n
Cormorant 3n 9s
Black h Gull 14n 13s
Shag 7s
Brent Goose db 1n
Common Scoter 19n
Auks 80n
Red th Diver 10n 1s
Long tailed Duck 2n
Fulmar 1n
Eider 5n
Shelduck 2n
Great n Diver 1n
Black th Diver 1n

Saturday, 7 December 2013

after the storm.........

3 Great northern Divers, a Long tailed Duck and a Velvet Scoter passed Whitburn Obs in 3 hours this morning
The big blow through the week didn't quite live up to expectations it didn't come round from the north for us
magic mark, stoney and myself turned up hoping for some after storm movement
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 7th December 07.35-10.35 W2

Black h Gull 119n 22s
Brent Goose lb 6s
Common Scoter 19n
Cormorant 5n 3s
Auks 200 plus north mainly Guillemot's
Long tailed Duck 1n
Red th Diver 9n 5s
Fulmar 7n 1s
Eider 3n 3s
Gannet 10n 5s
Porpoise 1
Shag 9s
Pink footed Goose 8n
Velvet Scoter 1n
Wigeon 3n
Great n Diver 2n 1s
Curlew 4n
Teal 2n

Sunday, 1 December 2013

you cant beat a shag fest........

Iceland Gull, Great n Diver and 46 Red th Divers passed Whitburn by 10.30 this morning. Anticipation was high for a special white winged gull today. I was joined by magic mark and stoney was in the house.We did get a class white winger but it was in the form of a juvenile Iceland Gull, we had a pleasant enough watch in nice conditions but the other highlight was a good passage of Shags.
The first Great northern Diver of the month brought to an end a fantastic month of diver passage in November. 36 Great northers were logged in the obs in November bringing the years total to 74
7 Black throated passed bring the year total so far to 23 for this much scarcer bird. And just to round things off 379 Red throats passed in November bringing the years total to 2320
This makes it the second best ever year so far for Great northern Divers since 102 in 2007 of which 61 were in November
It would be nice to finish the year with another species of diver.............
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Sunday 1st December 07.25-10.30 W2 cloud cover

Black h Gull 17n 15s
Common Gull 3n 2s
Eider 4n 6s
Common Scoter 44n 14s
Shag 1n 68s
Goldeneye 1n
Cormorant 9n 4s
Red th Diver 20n 26s
Gannet 6n 1s
Fulmar 3n
Iceland Gull 1s juv
Guillemot 5n
Snow Bunting 1s
Great n Diver 1n
Goosander 1n