Friday, 11 November 2011

Wknd 12-13 November

En route to Port Seton early afternoon driving past the caravan park suddenly realised bird on wires just passed was a swallow! Pulled up sharp and leapt out, quickly confirming it was a juv Barn Swallow (not visible on pics but was very pale over bill). Had to continue to daughter's ballet class but on way back bird still present perched very near same spot. Conditions mild (11C), very little wind (despite general forecast), but seemed content to sit and preen. [Postscript - presumed same just a little east on Tuesday 15 November, reported by persons unknown.]

Reminiscent of sightings of ad + 2 juvs at exact same spot on 13-14 November 2008.

Also interesting to note Clive McKay had one past SW on his Carnoustie vismig on Sunday, whilst down at Durlston (Dorset) they are still passing in small numbers most days (10's per day first wk November, now diminished, graph).

[Historical comparison - November Swallows are regular in Lothian, c. 25 birds in last 20 years (many of which roamed stretches of coast for several days, producing multiple sightings of presumed same bird) with only 4 blank years. Several recent records have been on Gosford coast, including one 6/11/10, one Gosford Bothy 7/11/09 and the three above on 14/11/08. Even more extreme, we had December records in 2000, on 2nd/3rd at Yellowcraigs, and in 1994 with records on 3rd at Aberlady, then on 4th & 21st at Dunbar!]

Saturday early hours, one greyish Tawny Owl perched in tree right by road at Jinging Hill, Garleton.

Saturday noon - small white-faced wader W past Port Seton well offshore, seemed all grey on top with an angled white wing bar towards trailing edge, bright white below; did not strike me as matching Sanderling (no strong contrasts on upperparts) and flight had occasional sudden changes in direction - if anything was even more rapid than other small calidrids, continuous rapid flapping. But, I'm not familiar with Grey Phalarope flight action, neither can I locate any examples online (or BWPi) (this is Red-necked though), so nothing more than a "possible" :(

Saturday dusk, a skein of geese larger than any I've previously seen here passed over NE towards Aberlady at 16:10hrs - hundreds of birds wide and approximately a mile long, would be surprised if less than 10000 birds!

Sunday 11 Whoopers on sea off Seton Sands in afternoon.

Also ad graellsii LBB back on harbour wall looking very like "Lucy" of previous years (if so, now a 7th-winter).

2 Purps on the harbour wall there amongst 32 Turnstone.

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