Sunday, 1 July 2012

Wknd 30 June - 1 July

Three red "alpha code" Sandwich Terns on Wrecked Craigs rocks on Saturday morning, the rising tide brought them in sufficiently to read and confirm by photos the codes EHD, ELK and EKL - a good job too as the latter pair might have gone down as a transcription error had the view been brief and fleeting! One previous record here was white-EVD at Ferny Ness in September 2010, c/o Abbie. EHD is a Farnes chick from 2005, this and the two others were caught on the Ythan 29 July, 30 July and 1 August last year, respectively. Per Grampian Ringing Group blog another of this batch was subsequently recorded in Namibia, a rather more exciting sighting! [PS - EHD subsequently recorded at Knott End, Lancs on 19/8/13]

Shags today were red-CWE, blue-ZLP and green-USS, all resident/returning.

Waders included a returning Common Sandpiper, 3 Golden Plover and just 5 Barwits, but a couple of those in breeding finery.

Quick WeBS circuit on Sunday, arriving at Chapel could hear a Quail calling from fields N, perhaps same as that reported by Jim earlier, then on S side had heard two more bursts of calls before pulling up at resr, then nothing. This has happened before, I suspect the car sets off calling. Very little on waterbodies, East Fortune Mutes had failed yet again (as every year since last success in 2006); Drem pair had 3 small young though. Moorhen chicks were in a deep concrete tank at Drem sewage works, did not try to rescue as per recent Mallard as they looked healthy and tank was swarming with insect life - they may be better in than out!

House Martins were occupying 2 nests at East Fenton workshop, a third nest nearly complete with a ring of wet mud at top - first time I have seen this species here in 8 years of visits; also used nest of this species at Fenton Barns.

As per garden log, was pleased to finally see an Osprey in Lothian in the morning, one right over the house; have spent countless hours on look-out for this species over last 8 years and had a couple of near misses, nevertheless the vast majority of sightings in Lothian seem to be concentrated at Musselburgh and the North Sea coast, also a good number Aberlady. As far as I know there have been 3 others seen over Longniddry since 1991 by other local birders. I'm sure the fact that visibility was poor this morning is no coincidence, any self-respecting Osprey never ventures near us otherwise!

Now on to my other Lothian bogey bird, Hen Harrier!

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