Thursday, 29 June 2017

Any dream will do......

Black-browed Albatross flew north at Whitburn Obs this morning, it was close inshore and i managed excellent though brief views. Yesterday afternoon i sent a text to Magic Mark saying i was hoping the Albert Ross would be tempted north on the northerly tomorrow. He replied it seems happy sat with its mates at mo....It was raining heavy and the wind was blasting so i sat at the north end of the Obs and left the northerly shutter closed as we do for protection from the rain. Looking straight out through my scope i was watching Fulmar and Gannets go north close inshore when the Albatross came into view full frame and inside the flag line, i thought bloody hell its the Al.....I could only watch it for a short period before it was lost to view behind the closed shutter. Jumping up i threw open the shutter while grabbing my video camera i pointed it and pressed record but couldn't see the bird so opened the north facing shutter to be hit by wind and rain. Hoggie rang me and asked what it had been like and i said the thing that struck me was it was pristine. And in the east the dawn was breaking, any dream will do
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Thursday 29th June 05.00-09.15 N3 rain 8/8

Gannet 538n 5s
Fulmar 246n 1s
Manxie 1n
Common Scoter 88n 9s
Common Tern 1n 1s
Black-browed Albatross 1n 05.30 close inshore
Swift 1n
Bonxie 3n
Curlew 1n

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Black Out.........

 2200 Common Scoter and 492 Manx Shearwaters passed Whitburn Obs by 09.30 this morning. Stoney was in the house but missed the first 500 Scoter, The first flock he saw had 260 in it but that was insignificant compared to the estimated 750 in the largest flock. I've included video and i will check the numbers later with a bit of slomo. Pink Floyd had joined us by now and said it was the largest individual flock he had ever seen. Birds of the day were two adult Med Gulls that were sat on the sea in front of the Obs, i said at the time that there are not many better sights than a sum plum Med Gull in flight, and we had two
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Tuesday 27th June SE3 8/8 05.05-09.30

Gannet 575n 80s
Manx Shearwater 479n 13s
Arctic Skua 2n
Puffin 61n 13s
Common Scoter 2131n 69s
Sandwich Tern 17n 25s
Black h Gull 7n 2s
Common Tern 4n 12s
Arctic Tern 3n 1s
Curlew 1n 1s
Eider 4n
Red th Diver 1n
Kestrel 1s
LBBGull 1s
Whimbrel 1s
Common Gull 2n 6s
Bonxie 1n
Med Gull 2n ads

Monday, 26 June 2017

Puffinus Puffinus where have you been....

 527 Manx Shearwaters and 4 Arctic Skuas passed Whitburn Obs by 09.30 this morning. The Manxies have been missing so far this year with few good counts but today they were back in force. I was on my own today which was a shame as the North Westerly brought Manxies and the light was better than of late
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Monday 26th June 05.05-09.30 NW2 4/8

Sandwich Tern 4n 87s
Kestrel 1s
Puffin 42n 7s
Arctic Skua 4n
Common Gull 2s
Mallard 1n
Red th Diver 2s
Gannet 361n 23s
Black h Gull 4s
Common Tern 3n 11s
Arctic Tern 1n 3s
Canada Goose 4n
Common Scoter 3n 2s
Curlew 1s
White beaked Dolphin (probable)_ circa 6 SE 06.40-06.50 distant some breaching size and sickle dorsal looked good for this species
Bottlenose Dolphin (probable) 2 feeding along flag line 08.55-09.05 didn't show much as lobster boat was nearby they kept low
Manx Shearwater 527n 1s

Saturday, 24 June 2017

When the going gets tough.....

Roseate Tern and two Greenshank went south at Whitburn Obs this morning. Yes June is a tough month for Obs ticks so i needed to get going, i heard the Greenshank call and got on them as they headed south..a big Obs year tick. Only four new species seen in June so far, Spooner. Black Guille, Cuckoo and the Shank quality but not a lot. Boy Wonder joined me today (eventually) as both Marks are AWOL. He managed to come in after the Rosie and wasn't fast enough to....
Strangest bird of the day was a drake Goldeneye flying south
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 24th June 05.00-09.00 W2-3 3/8

Sandwich Tern 12n 52s
Gannet 121n 29s
Black h Gull 1n 6s
Red th Diver 5n 3s
Common Gull 1n 5s
Porpoise 1n
Manxie 46n 12s
Kestrel 1s
Swift 2s
Common Tern 1n 1s
Roseate Tern 1s 06.35
Puffin 11s
Arctic Tern 2s
Grey Heron 1s
Goldeneye 1s
Greenshank 2s
Common Scoter 11n
LBBGull 1n

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

ello ello ello.....

 2654 Common Scoter, 242 Manxies and a Bonxie passed Whitburn Obs by 09.45 today. I had a visit at the Obs from a local Bobby and his dog but i told them Hoggie wouldn't be in till after 9 :). They were searching for a burglar that had headed my way but unfortunately i hadn't seen him so couldn't help. It wasn't the only excitement today though loads of birds were passing in good light on a North Easterly wind. Scoter were moving from the start and Junes passage now exceeds 10,000 birds and still only the 20th. Today the day passage record for the Obs was broken as over 3,000 have passed by 11.30 beating the 2863 set on 3/11/1998 and the guys are still watching.....So unlike last week the cavalry did arrive
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Tuesday 20th June 05.00-09.45 NE2 7/8

Gannet 402n 57s
Red th Diver 3n 1s
Common Scoter 2534n 120s
Sandwich Tern 22n 173s
Common Tern 22n 9s
Puffin 66n 15s
Common Gull 6n 7s
Manx Shearwater 232n 10s
Black h Gull 1n 1s
Arctic Tern 8n 7s
Ringed Plover 2n
Sanderling 1n
Bonxie 1n
Shag 1n 2s
Arctic Skua 1s
Eider 5n
Curlew 4s
Teal 4n
Med Gull 1s ad
Some of todays record breaking Common Scoter passage

Thursday, 15 June 2017

One, two, three.......

 2743 Common Scoter passed Whitburn Obs in five hours this morning, making it the third highest day passage on record. More may well pass today but i was done in 81/2 hours of counting and 4388 Common Scoter seen over two days. I will be counting them in my
You try and count the birds in today's video which is recorded in real time, you don't get long
This is what i saw today in order of appearance

Thursday 15th June 05.00-10.00 SW2 7/8

Common Scoter 2393n 350s
Gannet 358n 79s
Puffin 11n 5s
Common Tern 8n 32s
Arctic Skua 1n
Teal 5n 2s
Sandwich Tern 24n 99s
Grey Heron 1n 2s
Manxie 13n 12s
Sanderling 2s
Swift 15s
Eider 8n 1s
Arctic Tern 1n 4s
Common Gull 2s
Shag 1n 1s
Black h Gull 2s

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Ducked off......

1645 Common Scoter went north at Whitburn Obs by 08.30 this morning. Sadly i couldn't stay due to a dentists appointment, wish I'd looked after my teeth ....The top 5 day passage for Scoter are
3/7/2013 1945
2/7/2008 2116
22/10/1991 2523
21/10/1972 2813
3/11/1998 2863
It was looking good for a top five spot, i tried to coax some locals in but i forgot Wednesday's is Morrison's day.
It was a lovely calm morning and passage was good lets hope for more tomorrow, now what time am i at the Doctors tomorrow.
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Wednesday 14th June 04.55-08.30 SW1 7/8

Gannet 259n 53s
Sandwich Tern 50n 231s
Puffin 53n 10s
Manxie 93n
Common Scoter 1645n included flocks of 230/180/150/120 etc

Common Tern 9n 13s
Common Gull 9s
Red th Diver 4s
Tufted Duck 2n
Shag 2s
Little Tern 2s
Arctic Tern 1s
Goosander 5n
Black h Gull 1s
Canada Goose 4n

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Going Cuckoo.......

74 Manx Shearwaters went north at Whitburn Obs by 9am this morning. On a light westerly it was a quiet watch but with enough movement to keep my interest. I had to pop out for a comfort break and saw a Cuckoo flying around the Nature reserve, an Obs year tick and not the first under those circumstances. I managed to locate the Cuckoo sitting quietly in a bush but it was well hidden so no video today from this years bird. My list has limped along (like me) onto 147, it was 145 in 2016v at the end of June so still on target
This is what i saw today in order of appearance

Tuesday 13th June 05.00-09.00 WSW 1-2 4/8

Sandwich Tern 16n 220s
Puffin 16n 2s
Gannet 178n 21s
Arctic Tern 6n 11s
Common Tern 19n 21s
Common Gull 3s
Shelduck 8s
Manxie 74n
Black h Gull 4s
Shag 1n
Eider 2n
Little Tern 1s
Common Scoter 8n
Grey Squirrel 1
Kestrel 1
Grey Heron 2n then went back s
Cuckoo 1

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Tystie very Tystie.....

A Black Guillemot went north passed Whitburn Obs early morning. It's June, it's cold and raining, I'm tired, should i stay in bed......Don't be daft it's Obs time.
It was raining and full cloud meant it was a bit dreak. Birds were teaming north at speed i was looking through my scope (wouldn't have seen it with bins) and blinking heck a Black Guillemot was flying north in front of five Guillemots. When I'd had a look i moved to camera and managed a little poor quality record shot video, I've slowed it down and you can just about make out the Tystie
I only stayed three hours not a ;lot of variety but lots of Gannets and Guillemots
This is what i saw in order of appearance

Tuesday 6th June 05.05-08.05 SSE3 8/8 rain
Gannet 621n 126s
Fulmar 25n
Puffin 8n 3s
Black Guillemot 1n 05.12
Manxie 7n 5s
Sandwich Tern 8n 93
Common Tern 5n 13s
Arctic Tern 2s
Red th Diver 2n
Common Gull 1n
Shag 1s
Common Scoter 52n

Saturday, 3 June 2017

That spoon that spoon that Spoonbill...

2 Spoonbills flew south at Whitburn Obs this morning on a bog standard watch till that point. Magic Mark was my only companion and it's just as well as it was a Mark special, he is the best. It was a grip back for me as i have never seen Spoonbill from the Obs and Saint Mark had one a while ago.
This is what we saw in order of appearance

Saturday 3rd June 04.50-09.00 WNW2 4/8

Gannet 255n 14s
Puffin 13n 11s
Sandwich Tern 42n 86s
Fulmar 50n 3s
Common Gull 12n 11s
Common Scoter 62n 26s
Manxie17n 2s
Arctic Tern 18n 3s
Common Tern 22n 47s
LBBGull 2n
Canada Goose 3n
Black h Gull 1n 2s
Shag 1n 3s
Shelduck 1n
Mallard 2s
Sanderling 20n
Swift 2s
Goosander 1n
Red th Diver 1n
Eider 2n
Spoonbill 2s
Not today's birds but......