Sunday, 13 April 2014

Wknd 12-13 April

Winter not quite done - still 19 Whoopers (6 juv) at Chapel in grass - winds must be hindering their departure.

In the same area, in excess of 1000 LWHG, mainly Herring of course, also 29 LBB and what I presume is my old friend, a intermediate dark-mantled yellow-legged bird which has set off alarms for me since summer 2008. Thanks to Geoff's efforts I'm now much more confident that this is a LBBxHG hybrid, structurally it is quite slight compared to Herring, quite a long narrow primary projection, large white primary tips and crucially pale yellow legs, no match for the bright orange-yellow on some adult LBB. As we know many Herrings don't travel so far in winter it may well be that is is one of the same Larus morganii which winter on the Edinburgh coast - though seemed to be a full adult, also unringed so not the same as Geoff's last. Didn't manage any good shots but the bird is quite obvious on this pic below the left-hand end of the seeder:

Also 3 White Wagtails amongst 25+ Pied following plough with the gulls. Having done swans and gulls did a spot of atlas nests, much more difficult in the space of a week as the hawthorn has flourished, nevertheless within 100m of hedge at Craighead Cottage found an old Linnet's nest (confirm for NT58A), also a Goldfinch first below; then at Mungoswells 200m of hedge contained 3 Blackbird, another Goldfinch second below (confirm for NT47Z), remains of a Dunnock nest and a fine Whitethroat (apparently!) made of grass and lots of blue twine:

Admittedly it is hard to be sure these old Goldfinch nests are not 7 years old or older, but in these cases I'd had 7/11 individuals during TTV's in NT47Z/NT58A, enormously more likely they had bred and I'd failed to find the nest. One occupied nest spotted at Fenton Barns:

Back to the morning, tried vismig again at the King's Chair, Gullane, after so many Mipts passed Cleveland yesterday - only a few passing here, expect brisk wind depressed any decent movement (full counts).

Saturday - single Swallow flew over football training on Longniddry playing field, into strong wind, female Sparrowhawk again over the wood. Dusk produced 670 BHG (80% ad-sum), 120 Common Gull, 12 LBB at the Seton roost, though as usual the BHG were all concentrated east off Longniddry c/p 1.

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