Monday, 3 June 2013

Wknd 1-2 June

Success at the second attempt for Mute Swans at Blindwells, 7 small cygnets (flooded out last year).

Meanwhile the Eskside goslings are all developing but still a bit tricky to confirm. Comparing the mixed parents young (above) with the pure Canada and pure Greylag goslings of similar age it is clear that they are definitely not pure Canada - the latter still have entirely black bills, with more pronounced nostrils and quite obvious tufts at the ear; being sure they are not pure Greylags (photo below) is more tricky, though they do have rather dark bills, and definite tufts at ear which are not at all apparent on the pure Greylags; time will tell, hopefully they will not all perish or disappear before we can find out!

[Postscript 29 June - yes, my hunch was correct, a bunch of hybrids located this afternoon at the mouth of the Esk with same parents in attendance, record shot (mobile) right.]

Sunday - atlasing and final Rook sites in Midlothian, added 14 tetrad ticks and 56 upgrades, 27 at confirmed level; also found rookery at Ankrielaw (81+ nests), with Tree Sparrow nest embedded in one part of it, and another mass of Rooks NW of Halkerston; thus the Lothian total inches forward by another percentage point, now 77% of 1975 total (6362 nests, cf. 11262). A complete list of sites and comparisons is now linked here, if you find a rookery please check it is on this list! One remaining probable omission is the Glencorse dam wall, with 44 nests in 2011, we have no 2013 count. Casual records of rookeries have been close to zero for many years, and even amongst dedicated bird recording folks there has not been that much enthusiasm for this census, with a very few exceptions - but to me each species is important and of interest in its own right and seeing the efforts of our long-suffering resident Rooks rewarded as their young finally fledge must be something worth admiring!

During the week, accompanied Longniddry P5 to Binning Wood on Tuesday, best birds were a flock of Crossbills flushed by a hunting Sparrowhawk, addition for NT57Z; also confirmed Pheasant there via egg shell, and found a clump of Barn Owl nape feathers - species not recorded in NT57Z in either breeding or winter - not for want of trying - so looks like we missed them!

No comments:

Post a Comment