A blustery/baltic WSW made the birding hardwork. 5 Whooper Swans (4 Ads + 1 juv) off 2nd field, briefly joined on Mere by another 7 (4 Ads + 3 juvs) till 12.30 when they flew off SE. Black necked Grebe off 1st field, no sign of the Slav tho. 2 drk Goosander off Heslop’s bunked off west 14:30. 1 RB Merg on Mere, Marsh Harrier, Common Buzzard, Bullfinch, Redwing all just west of Heslop’s.
A cold start on 1st field with a ‘baltic’ WSW produced 30 White fronts on Mere with a single Pink foot in with em. Single Scaup off there also and the Black necked just off 2nd field. I dint hang around there for long and decided to get warmed up by walking down to Heslop’s for the Ouzel/Dick’s Pipit double act. The Ouzel was picked up straight away in the hedgerow but was from then on more elusive. I gave the two favoured areas of the Dick’s Pipit a good go but to no avail, just a couple of Yellowhammer, Reed Bunt and small numbers of Skylark. A scan from Martindown produced 1 RB Merganser off the cormorant trees and a Dunlin over Mere, 1 Goosander flew out west. 3 Common Buzzard over Wassand woods. Steve Webb sent us a txt with news of a Redhead Smew seen from the hide, the walk back to 2nd field late morning and i picked up the Smew at the north side of the Mere, but it was distant so i’ll go back over weekend for better views. The Slav and Black necked where then picked up together off 1st field reedbed around 12ish. Early afternoon was spent down in Wassand looking for a reported Red Kite from earlier in the week, but to no avail.
Black n Grebe - Adrian Johnson
Slavonian Grebe - Adrian Johnson
Following on from some recent good birds and birding at the Mere, i arrived early hoping to catch up with some stuff on the water and to get some shots of the Ouzel better than Robinsons “artistic” efforts. MR met us in 2nd field where we picked up on the Slav off Heslop’s , the Black necked off 1st field and the 3 RB Merganser’s off KP. Then on we walked up past Heslop’s to catch up with the Ring Ouzel. As we walked up MR was telling me about a bird Lee and himself had picked up on call whist watching the Ouzel the previous day, albeit brief flight views in the murk, it appeared to be of a large Pipit/Lark but showed no tail in flight. The bird had dropped into the field opposite the cormorant trees (Martindown we call it) and warranted a further look. Unfortunately despite a search they couldnt relocate it.
Whilst i was trying to get some shots of the mobile Ouzel in Martindown, MR had walked up a bit further to get better views of it, when he flushed the tail-less bird from yesterday out of the grass, getting a better look at it and hear of the call ( described as a “schweep”) as it flew out over the Hawthorn hedgerow towards the field along Decoy wood was pretty sure it was a Richard’s Pipit albeit with no tail. We then legged it into Decoy wood field where after walking it i picked up the Pipit on the deck at the far end. Luckily the bird took up again and called just overhead from us and settled in the top of a Hawthorn, affording us superb views for at least 5 mins, getting all the features nailed apart from the tail, and some views of them insanely long hindclaws. It then flew off back towards Heslop’s where after meeting up with George Bennett and later Mike Jackson, we picked the bird up after searching the in the grass field next to Heslop’s and the field opposite the cormorant trees. The bird was still present when we left around 11:45, and was seen early afternoon by Steve Webb although the bird had been more elusive.
The walk back produced 30 White fronts on the Mere, 4 RB Merganser and a Peregrine.
Richard's Pipit, Hornsea Mere - Tony Martin
Richard's Pipit, Hornsea Mere - Tony Martin
17th Nov 09:30-14:30
After a 12 hour night shift at work and being up since half 3 yday afternoon i should of really gone straight to bed, but the previous couple of days reports from the Mere theres been some new birds in, namely 3 Bean geese and a Black necked Grebe. We’ve got a half decent Mere year list goin and Beans arent on it yet, so i jumped in the car and went straight to the butty shop!! After a fill i got to 1st field and a scan showed a bit of stuff on Mere but it wa a bit murky, so i figured to get down past Heslop’s for a goosey at some geese and work my way back hoping it would brighten up. Anyways gets down there and no geese apart from the Barney flock, bollocks. The only birds i ‘d really noted where an odd few Redwing passing over and a few Blackbirds i’d been booting up as i walked along. As i got upto the west end of Heslop’s summat started ‘chakking’ in with the Blackies close by and then it got up bout 20 yards further along, Ring Ouzel! Alright not exactly a Mega but a Mere scarcity and a Mere year tick to boot, and a late one at that, Happy Days!! A quick call to Lee who’d just picked up on 3 RB Merganser off 2nd field, and the Ouzel showed on and off in the murk for most of the morning, giving plenty of time to get some shit pics. The walk back to 2nd field by which time it brightened up, produced the Slav and Black necked grebe, the 3 Mergs, 8 Scaup, Goosander and 38 White fronts on the Mere. The Ouzel pics are fuckin shite, but its a Ring Ouzel at the Mere in mid November so i’m sticking it up there!
8th Nov 08:00-12:45
Light SSE veering SW late morning. A belting few hours down Mere today started off with 8 Whoopers flying out SW over the southside. 3 Scaup off 1st field and a Brambling over. The Slav Grebe picked up off 2nd field between buoys 4 and 7 and pretty much in the same area till 12ish at least. 3 Pintail (2 Drks/1fem/imm), 2 Goosander (ad + imm) also. A steady passage of Lapwing south all morning involved a minimum 1900 birds. 190 Golden Plover also south, 1 Dunlin over Mere, 1 Snipe Decoy, 2 Curlew south. Goose wise no sign of the 21 White-fronts from yday (S.Webb), but 15 Eurasian White-fronts dropped in off 1st field mid morning followed by another 10 in just after 11am on Mere with another 5 Barney’s (94). Juv Peregrine taking a bath on the spit off Swan Island was then seen toying with a large bat sp. (prob noctule) off KP 12.30ish. 1 Marsh Harrier again various points of Mere, Water Rail, odd Redwing and Fieldfare.
Scaup - Adrian Johnson
0730 start looking for a reported confiding otter at an east hull beauty spot aka middle hill nature reserve. Sadly not seen but has been present for the last week swimming past local fisherman. Headed to the mere to see if the Eurasian white fronts where still present, no sign of the geese but the Slav was still present by bouy 3. Drake goosander was a new bird in along with yesterday’s scaup. 3 bullfinch over south side, 90+ fieldfare and snipe on Martindown and confiding marsh harrier hunting over heslops. An hours sea watch from mapp produced drake eider,1 merg,3 scoter,120 teal, 104 wigeon and 8 red throat.
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