December 2007

Click here for 2007 Year List

 

 

 

 

 

Report sightings

 

 

 

Monday 31st:

 

Little change on the last day of 2007 with the Surf Scoter again offshore with at least one Velvet Scoter, 15+ Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver and a Slavonian Grebe. Elsewhere a Pale-bellied Brent Goose was in the estuary.

 

The year's final tally was only 185 species, again down on recent years. The most noticeable absentee was Turtle Dove, 2007 was the first ever blank year in the recording area for this rapidly declining species. Other absentees were Pied Flycatcher, Black-necked Grebe and for the second year running Wood Sandpiper and Snow Bunting. The year was also notable for the lack of a BB rarity.

 

There were however two additions to the recording area list in 2007: Ortolan Bunting and Crane. Unfortunately both were only brief sightings. Indeed few birds stayed long enough to be seen by many observers this year, exceptions being the over wintering Cetti's Warbler (5th record) and the late winter Surf Scoter (9th record). Other highlights included Mandarin (2nd record), Woodchat Shrike (4th record), Red Kite (4th record), Buff-breasted Sandpiper (7th record), Whooper Swan (8th record) and Nightjar (10th record).

 

A pair of Oystercatcher again attempted to breed, but unfortunately as last year they failed due to predation. Other breeding species included Ringed Plover and only the second record of Sparrowhawk. Bullfinch failed to breed for the first time in many years, indeed the third record of the year was not until October.

 

2007 was however a great year for records with a series of record counts for Wood Pigeon, with over 45,000 in just three days in late October. Other vis mig records broken this year included Siskin, Jackdaw and Chaffinch. Sooty Shearwater, Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Stonechat also had their highest ever site counts in autumn as did, unfortunately, Canada Goose.

 

 

Sunday 30th:

 

The Surf Scoter remains offshore with seven Common and six Velvet Scoter, also offshore six Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver, three Slavonian Grebe and two Eider. A Spotted Redshank and two Greenshank were in Shutterton Creek and the Dartford Warbler was seen along the Dune Ridge.

 

 

Saturday 29th:

 

The Surf Scoter remains offshore with at least five Velvet Scoter, but is increasingly mobile and difficult to see on occasions. Also offshore four Red-throated and a Great Northern Diver, three Slavonian and four Great-crested Grebe and two Eider with 20+ Gannet and Kittiwake passing south. Elsewhere in the estuary there were 196 Grey Plover, 121 Knot, 72 Shelduck, 26 Sanderling and the Whimbrel, with five Bullfinch, two Chiffchaff and a Great-spotted Woodpecker around the bushes.

 


Whimbrel 29/12/07 Lee Collins                                             Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Friday 28th:

 

The Surf Scoter was still offshore and a Kingfisher was on the Main Pond, no other news was received for today.

 

Dunlin 29/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Thursday 27th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter remained offshore along with eight Red-throated Diver, seven Velvet Scoter, three Slavonian Grebe, two Eider and just one Common Scoter.  Also offshore a Little Auk, a very rare mid winter record, along with seven Guillemot and three Razorbill. Elsewhere a fourth Slavonian Grebe was in the estuary along with two adult Mediterranean Gull, a Whimbrel, 210 Bar-tailed Godwit, 158 Grey Plover, 78 Knot, 52 Ringed Plover and 40+ Common Gull.

 

Ringed Plover 27/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Wednesday 26th:

 

Offshore the immature Surf Scoter remained although the area was disturbed by a powerboat event. This same event also disturbed the six Velvet Scoter that were also present. These eventually flew around and circled the bay and the Surf got up and joined them before they all landed close to the seawall. Several other boats also flushed them during the day, but they were still present mid afternoon at least. No Slavonian Grebe could be found but there were 17 Red-throated Diver, seven Great-crested Grebe, eight Razorbill and two Eider also offshore. Elsewhere a Dartford Warbler was on the Dune Ridge, near the windmill, a Whimbrel was in front of the hide, a Snipe was in Greenland lake and in the Entrance Bushes there were four Chiffchaff and a Great-spotted Woodpecker.

 

Redshank 26/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Tuesday 25th:

 

No news was received for today.

 

 

Monday 24th:

 

The Surf Scoter remains offshore along with two Slavonian Grebe and five Common Scoter. In the estuary there were counts of 628 Wigeon, 299 Brent Geese, 238 Teal, 191 Bar-tailed Godwit and 69 Red-breasted Merganser. A Chiloe Wigeon was with the wildfowl, 23 Lapwing, 10 Black-tailed Godwit and a Greenshank were in Shutterton Creek and a Pale-bellied Brent Goose was in the Bight.

 

Brent Geese and Shelduck 18/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Sunday 23rd:

 

Fog delayed any serious attempts at birding until the afternoon. The entrance bushes held six Chiffchaff plus the tristis and a second grey'eastern' bird, four Goldcrest, four Long-tailed Tit, three Bullfinch, a Great spotted Woodpecker and a male Blackcap, a rare winter record for the reserve. Seawatching was more productive with the Surf Scoter still showing between groynes 12/13 also offshore 18 Red-throated Diver, 17 Great-crested and four Slavonian Grebe, 12 Common Scoter and two Velvet Scoter and seven Razorbill.

 

 

Saturday 22nd:

 

Early morning produced some late passage with c60 Chaffinch heading east along the coast along with c30 Goldfinch, 12 Skylark, a Siskin, a Reed Bunting and two Brambling, a rare winter record for the reserve. The Dartford Warbler remains on Warren Point and two Mistle Thrush there were also a good winter record. Elsewhere the Surf Scoter remains offshore with two female Eider, four Great-crested and three Slavonian Grebe, eight Black-tailed Godwit were in the estuary, a Water Rail was at the First Pond and a Great-spotted Woodpecker was in the Entrance Bushes.

 

 

Friday 21st:

 

The Surf Scoter remains offshore from Groyne 13 with 30+ Shag, two Great Northern Diver and two Slavonian Grebe. A Water Rail and Kingfisher were on the Main Pond with nine Mallard. Around Greenland Lake there were six Chiffchaff, five Long-tailed Tit, three Bullfinch, three Goldcrest and a Grey Wagtail.

 

 

Thursday 19th:

 

25 Common Scoter off Langstone rock was the only news received.

 

 

Wednesday 19th:

 

No news has been received.

 

 

Tuesday 18th:

 

The Surf Scoter remains offshore at Warren Point also there two Slavonian Grebe and two Great Northern Diver. Also offshore 24 Common Scoter and a Razorbill at Langstone Rock and a Black-throated Diver south. Two or three Long-tailed Duck were reported with the scoter flock off Langstone. A Firecrest was seen at the end of the end of the car park and also in the First Pond area three Goldcrest, two Chiffchaff and two Bullfinch with a Sparrowhawk through. The pair of Shoveler are still resident on the Main Pond with five Mallard, two Teal and at least three Water Rail. Elsewhere two Gadwall were in the estuary before flying upriver and two Grey Wagtail were again on site, this time over the Golf Course near the First Pond.

 

Shoveler 18/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Monday 17th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter remains offshore, also at least one Slavonian Grebe.

 

 

Sunday 16th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter remains offshore, joined by two female Eider this afternoon, also there a Slavonian Grebe and off Langstone Rock, c30 Common Scoter. The pair of Shoveler were again on the Main Pond along with three Little Grebe, a Kingfisher and at least one Water Rail. A pair of Gadwall and a drake Goldeneye were in Shutterton creek with counts from the estuary including 1800 Oystercatcher, 1240 Dunlin, 510 Wigeon, 200 Grey Plover, 87 Brent Geese, 59 Shelduck, 53 Knot, 53 Teal, 49 Redshank, 15 Black-tailed Godwit, 14 Sanderling, nine Snipe and a Greenshank.  Elsewhere A Black Redstart was again near the seawall, at least 12 Rock Pipit in the estuary included some presumed littoralis birds and the tristis Chiffchaff was in the Entrance Bushes.

 

 

Saturday 15th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter is still offshore from Warren Point, with 20+ Common Scoter off Langstone Rock. A drake Chiloe Wigeon was on the Main Pond along with a pair of Shoveler, Kingfisher, Water Rail and the tristis Chiffchaff. Two Grey Wagtail flying north were unseasonal.

 

Chiloe Wigeon 15/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Friday 14th:

 

Another Spoonbill was present today roosting in front of the hide until 11.30am at least, presumably the same bird that had been at Exminster Marshes and then on the Axe Estuary during the afternoon. The immature Surf Scoter was still offshore from Warren Point, with two Slavonian Grebe. A single drake Shoveler was in Shutterton Creek with 700 Wigeon.

 

 

Thursday 13th:

 

No news was received for today.

 

 

Wednesday 12th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter was again around Pole Sands, with a Velvet Scoter further out off the Windmill, also offshore two Slavonian Grebe and a Red-throated Diver. Elsewhere there were 54 Knot and six Little Egret in the estuary and a pair of Shoveler on the Main Pond.

 

 

Tuesday 11th:

 

The unexpected highlight was of two Spoonbill which flew south along the coast at 9.30 am, presumably the birds seen yesterday at Ferrybridge, Dorset and seen this afternoon on the Hayle Estuary, Cornwall. Offshore the immature Surf Scoter is still present feeding around Pole Sands, with a Slavonian and five Great-crested Grebe; a Great Northern and a Red-throated Diver and 34 Common Scoter were off Langstone Rock. In the estuary there were 260 Brent Geese and 65 Shelduck. Elsewhere a Dartford Warbler remains on Warren Point, a Mistle Thrush was an unseasonal sighting, a Water Rail and a Kingfisher were on the Main Pond and around the bushes there were 4 ordinary Chiffchaff, two Bullfinch and a Great-spotted Woodpecker.

 

 

Monday 10th:

 

No news was received for today.

 

 

Sunday 9th:

 

A Short-eared Owl came in off the sea late afternoon, against the strong NW'ly wind and landed on Warren Point. Elsewhere the male Black Redstart was again on the sea wall and two grey Chiffchaff were by the First Pond.

 

Short-eared Owl 9/12/07 Simon Thurgood 

 

 

Saturday 8th:

 

Seawatching for two hours from 11.30 was just that, a Great Northern Diver south was the highlight. Other counts included 23 Kittiwake, 18 Gannet, 12 Razorbill and two Red-breasted Merganser. The Surf Scoter was still offshore along with single Red-throated and Great Northern Diver, 10 Common Scoter, eight Great-crested Grebe and a drake Eider. Elsewhere both Black Redstart were again on the sea wall and two Chiffchaff and a Great-spotted Woodpecker were by the First Pond.

 

 

Friday 7th:

 

The immature Surf Scoter was again offshore with a Great Northern Diver and 23 Common Scoter. Elsewhere a Firecrest and the tristis Chiffchaff were in the Entrance Bushes, the male Black Redstart was still present on the sea wall and 66 Shelduck were in the Bight.

 

 

Thursday 6th

 

No news was received for today.

 

 

Wednesday 5th:

 

Both the male and female Black Redstart showed on the seawall, whilst offshore 80 Kittiwake and four Great Northern Diver flew south this morning.  Counts from the estuary today included 2000 Dunlin, 1900 Oystercatcher, 448 Brent Geese with just 22 juveniles, 146 Grey Plover, 120 Bar-tailed Godwit, 82 Great Black-backed Gull, 62 Knot, 51 Ringed Plover, 46 Shelduck and two Little Grebe.

 

 

Tuesday 4th:

 

The Black Redstart was still present on the sea wall along with a Grey Wagtail.

 

 

Monday 3rd:

 

The male Black Redstart was still present on the sea wall, with the immature Surf Scoter and two Great Northern Diver offshore.

 

 

Sunday 2nd:

 

The first Black Redstart of the year, a smart male was on the sea wall, and whilst searching the second of the year, a female, was also found. Offshore the immature Surf Scoter remains close in near the estuary mouth, occasionally with the immature Velvet Scoter also offshore two Manx Shearwater and a Pomarine Skua flew south, with a Slavonian Grebe, four Red-throated and two Great Northern Diver on the sea. Elsewhere 241 Great Black-backed Gull and 68 Shelduck were in the Bight, 22 Black-tailed Godwit, a Greenshank and a Great Northern Diver were in the estuary, 40+ Turnstone were around the site and the Siberian Chiffchaff was in the Entrance Bushes with four Chiffchaff, a Great-spotted Woodpecker and a Siskin.

 

Black Redstart 02/12/07

 

 

Saturday 1st:

 

Both the immature Surf and Velvet Scoter remain together off the windmill with a Slavonian Grebe, two Red-throated and a Black-throated Diver also offshore. Elsewhere a Golden Plover was in the estuary with 48 Ringed Plover, 22 Sanderling and an adult Mediterranean Gull.

 

 

 

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