Sunday, December 09, 2007

Local birding - 8th & 9th Dec 2007.

8th Dec: Called in briefly at Clowbridge Reservoir in poor weather to see the Great Northern Diver actively feeding along the far side of the reservoir. This was followed by a visit to Fishmoor Res just after 15:00 en route home to find the 1stw Glaucous Gull roosting on the former Corus factory roof to the south of the site in conditions so appallingly wet and windy it became impossible to view through the scope after thirty minutes onsite.

9th Dec: All night TV pay-per-view coverage of the Hatton v Mayweather fight did not finish until almost 06:30, so despite feeling tired I decided to stay up and go out at first light. First port of call was to check Fishmoor just before 08:00 to find 99% of the Gulls had already left the roost. Withnell Landfill was the next destination, but hardly any Gulls appeared to be present. The only other place likely to hold the Glauc was Whinney Hill Tip, a site sadly devoid of Gulls for the previous two winters for reasons put down to probable efficent bird scaring tactics. It was pleasing to see at least 100 Herring Gull over the site and the Glauc was soon located amongst them, but due to the lack of tipping on a Sunday the Gulls chose to spend much of the next hour largely out of sight, inactive, atop a large, high plateau area within the site, the Glaucous only giving three flight views and two views on the ground, all brief. Twenty Siskin flew low past me, 24 Meadow Pipit were present in the Tip and two delightful Goldcrest gave views down to three feet.

Above: 1stw Glaucous Gull - Whinney Hill Tip, Altham, Lancs - 9th Dec 2007.

I had hoped to spend a full day in the field but sadly fatigue took a firm grip soon after, so I returned home for a revitalising brew only to collapse on the setee in a prone position reminiscent of gallant Ricky in the 10th for the remainder of the afternoon!