Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Rain until the End of Term

On Tuesday a wet and windy day was forecast, so we decamped to North Cave Wetlands.  The Mandarin was the highlight, and was a new bird for the year. 
Mandarin
 Tree Sparrow
 Heron [right] & Cormorant
 Mandarin
 Redwing
 ditto
 Dunnock
 Bullfinch 
 Pink-footed Geese
 ditto
 Siskin
The Mandarin helped raise the Tuesday term tally to 110, which just may be the highest term tally since we started monitoring the totals.  In the whole year the Tuesday group encountered 139 species, which is four more than last year.  However, the weather and the venues visited meant we missed out on some obvious species which included: Cuckoo, Yellow Wagtail, Corn Bunting, Greenshank and Willow Tit.  In 2020 these will be actively searched for.   
Curlew 

Wednesday was another day when rain was forecast, so we went to Ness End.  A Bittern showed both morning, at lunchtime, and a long, slow flypast for the pm group.  
Bittern (c) 2019 Tony Robinson 
ditto 
 ditto
Wigeon
 ditto
 ditto
 ditto
Record shot of Goldcrest (c) 2019 Aileen Urquhart
Marsh Harrier (c) 2019 Aileen Urquhart
 Bittern
 ditto
Bittern at Lunchtime (c) 2019 Tony Robinson
 ditto
 ditto
The Wednesday am total for the term was 106 with 140 for the year.  This was without Corn Bunting, Grey Partridge, Grey Plover, Hawfinch, Yellow Wagtail, Turtle Dove, Hen Harrier, Little Owl Common Sandpiper, Greenshank and Arctic Tern, so we will try to prioritise those in 2020.  Meanwhile, the Bittern made 102 for the Weds pm Autumn session, but they managed 143 for the year.  However, the species for which they opined were mainly Owls including: Barn, Little and Short-eared, plus Redstart and Stonechat.
ditto
Rain was forecast on Thursday, so we switched to North Cave Wetlands again.  The Mandarin was seen again, but the biggest surprise was a Green Sandpiper dropping into the New Workings just west of the new Barn Owl Box.  Also seen were a Treecreeper and a Marsh Tit, and several Pink-footed Geese.
Goldcrest
Tree Sparrows (c) 2019 Dick Watson
Bullfinch
Bullfinch
Bullfinch (c) 2019 Dick Watson
Record shot of Buzzard
Treecreeper
ditto 
Fieldfare
Marsh Tit
Ditto
Redshank & Snipe
The Thursday morning recorder noted that species missing in 2020 were Willow Tit, Little Owl, Dipper, Brambling and Nightingale.  We can't really expect Dipper and Nightingale in East Yorkshire, so we would have to make a special trip for them outside of our normal area, but hopefully we will target Little Owl, Willow Tit and Brambling next year.  A theme is beginning to develop.  I haven't got the term or annual totals for either the Thursday morning or pm class but I expect the totals to be just under the 99 total for the term, and around 140 for 2019. 
Sloes
This Low-flying Scum spooked all the Geese - should have been reported really
On Friday the two groups caught up with Scarborough.   Luckily, the Great Northern Diver was still present, and after lunch the Red-throated Diver also turned up, but was again set upon by the larger diver.  Friday was supposed to be the best day of the week, but we encountered several rain showers.  The Turnstones didn't turn their noses up (or do I mean bills?) at Joan's biscuit, and a photo opportunity on the quayside materialised - if you look closely you can actually see the raindrops!
Cormorant
 ditto
 Shag
 Great Northern Diver (c) 2019 Mike Woods
 ditto
 ditto
 Spotted the Red-throated (c) 2019 Mike Woods
 Agression (c) 2019 Mike Woods                                                       
Record shot of Red-throated Diver (c) 2019 Mike Woods
 Record shot of Redshank (c) 2019 Mike Woods

Purple Sandpipers
 Turnstone
 Turnstones - with rain and Joan's biscuit!
 Turnstones
 ditto
 Turnstone (c) 2019 Mike Woods
 ditto
Turnstone with Coloured Rings (c) 2019 Mike Woods
Over the Autumn term the Friday am group encountered exactly 100 species, whilst the pm session scored 101.  For the year the morning session saw 145 species, but the after lunch 141 were recorded, as they keep heard species separately.
Male Peregrine
 Female Peregrine
Meanwhile, on a grey Sunday morning we had four Goldcrests in a single bright bush.  Of course the most in-focus bird was the one away from the bright foliage.
Goldcrest
 ditto
 ditto
 ditto
 ditto
 ditto
 ditto
So, for the Autumn term we have:
110 - Tues am
106 - Weds am
102 - Weds pm
101 - Friday pm
100 - Friday am
c.99 - Thursday am
c.90 - Thursday pm

For 2019 in total we have
145 - Friday am
143 - Wednesday pm
141 - Friday pm
140 - Wednesday am
139 - Tuesday am  
c.139 - Thursday am
c.130 - Thursday pm

Birds missed in 2019, which need finding in 2020: Corn Bunting, Yellow Wagtail, Little Owl, Barn Owl, Short-eared Owl, Cuckoo, Grey Partridge, Stonechat, Redstart Willow Tit and Brambling.