Friday, 30 May 2014

bottle up and go......

8 Bottlenose Dolphins went north past Whitburn Obs early morning then 5 went south again in case i missed the the first time video link attached. . The John lee Hooker song title seemed apt. The sea watch was quiet otherwise. New Mark joined me at the end of my watch and i did see a Bonxie when i had to return to the obs to collect my mobile id left on the seat!
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Friday 30th May 05.00-07.00 NW1-2 SE1 later calm sea mainly cloud cover
Gannet 22n 30s
Sandwich Tern 9n 21s
Red th Diver 1n
Common Tern 9n 21s
Common Scoter 30n
Puffin 6n 4s
Whimbrel 1s
05.20-05.35 Bottlenose Dolphins 8 north
Manx Shearwater 1n
Shag 1n
Eider 2n
05.45-05.50 Bottlenose Dolphin 5 south
Arctic Tern 1n
Canada Goose 2n

Sunday, 25 May 2014

its a kinda magic.........

Long tailed Skua, 2 Roseate Terns, and a Velvet Scoter passed Whitburn obs this morning. Magic Mark was back after having gone AWOL yesterday.and showed why we call him Magic. He called the Long tailed Skua going north and managed to get me on it, phew. Sadly New Mark had already left the obs!
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Sunday 25th May 05.15-10.15 ESE1-2 part cloud calm sea

Gannet 230n 34s
Shag 4n
Arctic Tern 9n
Puffin 58n
Red th Diver 10n 3s
Sandwich Tern 36n 186s
Manxie 27n 1s
Common Scoter 41n 9s
Common Tern 50n 10s
Ringed Plover 1n
06.10 Dolphin sp fully breaching on a number of occasions but distant
Black h Gull 2n 5s
LBBGull 4n 1s
Sanderling 2n
Roseate Tern 2s
Swift 1n
Willow Warbler 1 on the hut
Little Tern 3s
Wheatear 1 on the hut
Greylag Goose 4n
08.40 Long tailed Skua north
Bar t Godwit 1n
Shelduck 2n
Med Gull 2n ad and 1st sum
Velvet Scoter 1n
Eider 1n

Saturday, 24 May 2014


2 Great northern Divers and 5 Velvet Scoter went north past Whitburn obs in 4 hours this morning. The star birds were a repeat of yesterday. New Mark joined me and Stoney was in the house, conditions were good and the second great northern was close inshore but none of us reached for a camera we were all enjoying the bird!, this is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 24th May 05.10-09.10 ENE2 cloud cover calm sea

Sandwich Tern 22n 192s
Puffin 275n
Gannet 451n 39s
Manxie 36n
Red th Diver 7n
Common Scoter 57n 41s
Shag 3n
Common Tern 4n 10s
Velvet Scoter 5n
Kestrel 2n
Great n Diver 2n 07.00 and 08.55
Arctic Tern 1n
Porpoise 1
Auks circa 2000 n 

Friday, 23 May 2014

another one bites the dust......

2 Great northern Divers and a Little Gull went north past Whitburn obs by 09.00 this morning. Magic Mark joined me again and Stoney was in the house. Expectations were high with a good northerly blowing. Purple Sandpiper was a new obs year tick for the year bringing my total to 127, as they say another one bites the dust
this is what we saw in order of appearance

Friday 23rd May 05.10-09.05 NNE3-4 great light perfect sea watching conditions

Gannet 310n 10s
Puffin 99n
Common Tern 92n 1s
Manx Shearwater 56n
Common Scoter 22n 40s
Grey Heron 1n
Sandwich Tern 48n 8s
Purple Sandpiper 13n
Sanderling 15n
Knot 2n
Red th Diver 4n 1s
Ringed Plover 1n
Arctic Tern 10n
Bar t Godwit 2n
Shoveler 2n
Little Gull 1n 1st sum
Black h Gull 1n
Great n Diver 2n 07.53 and 08.14
Dunlin 2n

heading back to obs now

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Dolphins in the rain

8 Bottlenose Dolphins went north past Whitburn Obs this morning I even managed some decent video which will be on my youtube channel later. Magic Mark joined me and Stoney was in the house. The northerly hadn't produced anything special by the time i left and the rain was persistent. This is what we saw in order of appearance

Thursday 22nd May 05.15-08.30 N3 rain

Gannet 186n 95s
Common Scoter 10n 9s
Sandwich Tern 58n 186s
Shelduck 2s
Puffin 68n 3s
Red th Diver 3s
Common Tern 22n 3s
Bottlenose Dolphin 8 n 06.25-06.38 close inshore
Manx Shearwater 2n 1s
Whimbrel 1n
Dunlin 16n

Monday, 19 May 2014

Dolphins banish the blues

6 Bottlenose Dolphins went north past Whitburn obs early this morning. After a busy weekend birding i was feeling the Monday morning blues. Sea watching was difficult with bright sun through mist and i was just about to give up when the Dolphins surfaced in front of me. They were not very showy but brightened up my morning. This is what i saw on my watch today

Monday 19th May 05.30-07.00 S1-2 mist, bright sun

Puffin 3n 2s
Common Tern 11n 13s
Sandwich Tern 9n 329s
Gannet 14n 8s
Manx Shearwater 1n 3s
Arctic Tern 4n 1s
LBB Gull 1s
Common Gull 1n 6s
Common Scoter 6s
Red th Diver 1n 1s
Eider 2s
Bar t Godwit 2n
Bottlenose Dolphin 6n close inshore 06.50-07.00

Saturday, 17 May 2014

dive, dive ,dive..........

3 species of Diver went past Whitburn Obs early morning on quiet calm day. I was joined by Magic Mark and New Mark on a shortened sea watch as we all headed off inland looking for scarce summer visitors. This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 17th 05.00-06.45 WSW 1-2

Wheatear 2 by the obs
Sandwich Tern 12n 235s
Red th Diver 9n 1s
Gannet 45n 13s
Arctic Tern 1n
Black th Diver 1n 05.08
Common Tern 32n 13s
Whimbrel 2n
Blk h Gull 5n 10s
Great n Diver 1n 05.37
Ringed Plover 3n
Sand Martin 8n
Common Scoter5n 1s
Goosander 1n
Shelduck 2n 2s
Bar t Godwit 1s
Puffin 2n
Shag 1n 1s

Thursday, 15 May 2014

quiet day at the office..

A Velvet Scoter went north past Whitburn obs this morning on a sedate sea watch. Even Magic Mark could not conjure up anything special but it was enjoyable with a calm sea and good light. This is what we saw in order.......

Thursday 15th May 05.00-07.30 W2 cloud cover calm sea

Common Gull 17n 6s
Puffin 28n 3s
Common Scoter 140n 13s
Common Tern 27n 6s
Black h Gull 12n 1s
Swallow 6s
Gannet 203n 7s
Arctic Tern 6n
Manx Shearwater 3n 2s
Red th Diver 4n 2s
LBBGull 1s
Sandwich Tern 8n 446s
Velvet Scoter 1n
Red br Merganser1n
Dunlin 4n
Whimbrel 1n
Eider 1s

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

its my tern..........

2 Roseate Terns went north past Whitburn Obs this morning the first recorded from the obs this year. Hartlepool had some, St Marys had some, Whitburn Steel had some, well at last so has the obs
It was a busy morning for Terns and this is what i saw in order of appearance

Wednesday 14th May 05.05-07.30 NW1-2 cloud cover till 7ish then bright sun

Black h Gull 2n
Common Gull 35n 19s
Whimbrel 2n
Curlew 3n
Common Tern 17n 57s
Gannet 288n 6s
Common Scoter 16n 20s
Puffin 14n 3s
Arctic Tern 7n 2s
Little Tern 1n
Shelduck 5n
Sanderling 35n
Swallow 3n
Sandwich Tern 10n 353s
Sparrowhawk 1n
Tufted Duck 2s
Roseate Tern 2n
Manx Shearwater 1n
Red th Diver 1n 1s
Eider 2n

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Red necked grebe first for the year at Whitburn

A Red necked Grebe went north past Whitburn at 6.05 this morning our first for the year bringing my obs list to 125 for the year. I was joined by Magic Mark who called the bird in difficult light, well done Mark. I had to leave for work at 07.30 and left Mark watching. It was a busy couple of hours and this is what we saw in order of appearance

Tuesday 13th May 05.10-07.30 NNW2 cloud cover at first then bright sun

Eider 7n
Sandwich Tern 4n 221s
Gannet 288n 5s
Common Tern 60n 12s
Common Scoter 112n 5s
Puffin 33n
Red th Diver 3s
Turnstone 9n
Dunlin 34n
Arctic Tern 2n 1s
Swallow 2n
Whimbrel 6n
Manx Shearwater 3n
Goosander 1n
Red necked Grebe 1n 06.05
Tufty 5n
Shag 1n
Sanderling 11n

Sunday, 11 May 2014

whats that coming past the hut....was it stevie thunder

Long tailed Duck, Marsh Harrier and a Peregrine passed Whitburn obs in 5 hours this morning. I was joined by Magic Mark and New Mark today on a great sea watch with loads of variety in good conditions. Waders, Raptors, Terns what more could a sea watcher want. Stevie Thunder was running today 'between the piers' and had predicted passing the obs at 10.30, so we left at 10!
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Sunday 11th May 05.05-10.05 W2 coming round to NW later broken cloud cover and excellent visibility

Arctic Tern 6n
Gannet 190n 181s
Red th Diver 4n 6s
Black h Gull 9n 3s
Puffin 5n 4s
Common Tern 35n 5s
Common Scoter 2n 6s
Tufted Duck 2s
Swallow 1n 5s
Curlew 2n
Sand Martin 3n 3s
Peregrine 1n
Sandwich Tern 9n 117s
Turnstone 25n
Long tailed Duck 1n
Diver sp 1s prob blk th
Swift 2s
Shelduck 3n 3s
Mallard 7n
Sanderling 11n
Dunlin 2n
Common Sandpiper 1n
Whimbrel 2n 1s
LBBGull 5n
Marsh Harrier 1s female 08.30
Red br Merganser 1n
Ringed Plover 6n
Lesser Whitethroat 1
Shag 1n 1s

Saturday, 10 May 2014

Here comes the rain again......

Black Tern Arctic Skua and a Manxie went north past Whitburn Obs early morning. I was joined by New Mark and in between downpours we managed to see a few birds. This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 10th May 05.10-09.05 SSE 2-3 then 3-4 intermittent rain

Eider 1n 1s
Tufted Duck 1n
Red th Diver 4n
Puffin 4n 1s
Turnstone 14n
Dunlin 2n
Common Tern 23n 8s
Sandwich Tern 9n 173s
Common Scoter 40n 24s
Whimbrel 2n
Sand Martin 1n 4s
Gannet 187n 33s
Common Gull 11n 7s
Black Tern 1n
Sanderling 9n
Arctic Tern 12n 1s
Swift 1s
Swallow 5s
Ringed Plover 24n
Curlew 1n
Mallard 2s
Black h Gull 1s
Manx Shearwater 1n
Arctic Skua 1n
Shelduck 1n

Friday, 9 May 2014

Black Magic

A Black throated Diver went north past Whitburn Obs at 06.50. It was in summer plumage and was close in shore. It was my first this year and an Obs year tick bringing the list to 122.
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Friday8th May 05.05-07.15 SW2 cloud calm sea rain on and off from 06.30

Eider 3n 1s
Sandwich Tern 2n 522s
Sand Martin 1n 5s
Gannet 30n 11s
Common Tern 13n 4s
Red th Diver 2n 1s
Common Gull 5n 8s
Arctic Tern 2n
Black h Gull 8s
Common Tern 2n 18s
Swallow 1n 18s
Little Tern 1s
Shelduck 8s
Ringed Plover 1s
Barnacle Goose 1s
Black th Diver 1s 06.50

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Breakfast with the Dolphin's

7 Bottlenose Dolphins went south past Whitburn obs this morning .They were close in, circa 400-500 yds out so the views were short lived as thew went south. A youngster fully beached a couple of times. It was an enjoyable couple of hours and this is what i saw in order of appearance

Wednesday 7th May 05.10-07.10 SW2 light cloud

Common Gull 1n 47s
Dunlin 18n
05.15 05.20 7 Bottlenose Dolphins south
Eider 2n 3s
Black h Gull 62s
Common Scoter 9n 2s
Red th Diver 1n 2s
Common Tern 12s
Canada Goose 3n 9s
Swallow 16s
Sand Martin 9s
Shelduck 3s
Arctic Tern 4n 4s
Curlew 2s
Whimbrel 1n 5s
Sandwich Tern 3n 75s
Mallard 1s
Shag 1s
Gannet 3n

Monday, 5 May 2014

Common as muck

60 Arctic Terns 2 Little Terns and 3 Whimbrel were the highlights passed Whitburn Obs this morning. The first three species i saw were Common Scoter, Common Gull and Common Tern........ it was that sort of day the conditions were fine but lacked some wind. I was joined by Magic Mark, New Mark and Stevie Thunder and this is what we managed to see until i left a little early to go hunting Wood Warblers

Monday 5th May 05.05-08.05 SW 1-2 cloud cover early on then broken cloud

Common Scoter 19n 4s
Common Gull 48n 38s
Common Tern 20n 59s
Canada Goose 7s
Cormorant 5n 20s
Sandwich Tern 35s 138n
Little Tern 2s
Eider 1n 6s
Black h Gull 17s
Arctic Tern 51n 9s
Whimbrel 3n
Curlew 2n 4s
Gannet 49n 10s
Sand Martin 1n 5s
Puffin 34n 2s
Tufted Duck 1n
Ringed Plover 1n
Swallow 1n 3s
Shelduck 7n 2s
Turnstone 8n
Red th Diver 4n
Porpoise 2
Goosander 1n
Oyster Catcher 70n

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Everything but the Gull..........

2 Arctic Skuas a Manxie and 41 Arctic Terns passed Whitburn obs early morning. I was joined by Magic Mark and New Mark and we had a mega sea watch loads of variety and some real quality birds. We had all we could expect but didn't see the reported Iceland Gull that was supposed to be on the sea in front of us. I suspect the bird we saw yesterday wasn't about hence everything except the gull
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Sunday 4th May 05.30-10.10 SSW2 rain and full cloud cover

Cormorant 27n 31s
Common Scoter 25n 23s
Whimbrel 87n 1s
Sandwich Tern 12n 420s
Common Gull 49n 19s
Red th Diver 4n 3s
Arctic Tern 39n 2s
Arctic Skua 2s
Black h Gull  3n 12s
Gannet 39n 18s
Common Tern 18n 68s
Tufted Duck 13n 8s
Bar tailed Godwit 3n
Golden Plover 30n
Swallow 29n 27s
Turnstone 139n 2s
Sanderling 19n 6s
Curlew 4n
Puffin 13n
Eider 3n 5s
Dunlin 4n
Wheatear 1 on fence
Little Tern 1n
Sandmartin 7s
Shelduck 3n
Pink footed Goose 11n landed on sea for a while
Goosander 1s
Teal 2n 1s
Red br Merganser 3n
LBB Gull 3s
Manx Shearwater 1n
Gadwall 3n
House Martin 1s
Cheryl the Crow popped in to feed

phew, it was fun

Saturday, 3 May 2014

Dont send me no Rosy's

Arctic Terns and Whimbrel passed Whitburn Obs on our early morning sea watch. It was a full house with Magic and New Mark back in the obs. No star birds and no Rosy's, Geoff Iceton had a brace of  Roseate Terns at Hartlepool and we had hoped they would head north but we didn't connect. However Magic Mark and myself did have a 2nd Winter Iceland Gull this afternoon
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 3rd May 05.15-09.30 W1-2 bright sun

Cormorant 16n 20s
Bar tailed Godwit 2n
Curlew 4n
Sandwich Tern 17n 116s
Common Tern 38n 37s
Yellow Wagtail 1s
Whimbrel 1n 2s
Common Gull 10n 38s
Greylag Goose 1s
Eider 3n 2s
Gannet 78n 2s
Black headed Gull 1n 32s
Common Scoter 8n 5s
Arctic Tern 1n 8s
Red th Diver 2n
Swallow 4n 6s
Sand Martin 6n
Shelduck 4n
Shag 3n

Friday, 2 May 2014

big feet big...........

Great northern Diver and a Manx Shearwater went north past Whitburn this morning, otherwise it was a little quiet which is a shame as the conditions were excellent. NE wind excellent visibility and good light deserved more. The Great northern had massive feet so .............
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Friday 2nd May 05.10-07.25 NE2-3 broken cloud

Fulmar 42n
Shag 1n
Gannet 77n 3s
Eider 3n 5s
Common Tern 2s
Whimbrel 1n
Sandwich Tern 10n 23s
Cormorant 2n
Arctic Tern 5n 5s
Barnacle Goose 2n
Manx Shearwater 1n
Goosander 5n
Great n Diver 1n 06.25
Common Scoter 2s
Red th Diver 1n
Common Gull 2n

Thanks to Pink Floyd for fixing the south door it is now sorted

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Goosey Goosey Gander where shall................

520 Barnacle Geese went south past Whitburn Obs by 07.30 this morning. It was a bit of a shock when the first skein of 65 went south they were close in and moving south, my brain wasn't in gear and it was 05.45. It didn't take long for the next 90. Sadly my early morning watch is limited by having to get to work before 8am
More Geese would have gone south behind the obs in the strong south easterly. Otherwise it was quiet in the rain with few birds moving
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Thursday 1st May 05.25-07.30 SE3-4 rain

Fulmar 9n 22s
Common Gull 19n
Gannet 37n 31s
Cormorant 2n 3s
Sandwich Tern 14s
Barnacle Goose 510s (skeins of 65,90,220,85 and 60
Puffin 3n
Red th Diver 2n 1s
Common Scoter 3n 13s
Common Tern 2s
Eider 2s
Tufted Duck 2n