Eurasian White-fronts at High Eske NR.

10 Oct

Been a while since I’ve posted. The summer nights make it difficult to find the time and not been much to provoke me to blog recently. With my three weeks holiday coming up I expected to do something soon. Hasn’t started well. Began my holiday with the vehicle having an over long trip to the mechanic, but as I had a bad cold and the weather was bad wasn’t too much of a problem. The number of migrants on the coast was a worrying though. Report of Lanceolated Warbler and Pine Bunting at Spurn Point fortunately came to nothing though.

8/10/15 With an improvement in the weather and myself on Thursday, went for a walk with the dog in the fields off Priory Road in the morning but the only migrant was a Chiffchaff. A late Common Darter was interesting but we’ve not had a frost yet.

Late afternoon was back mobile so headed to Brough. Had a male Stonechat by Brough Airfield Marsh [a pair seen recently].

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♂.Stonechat-Brough Airfield Marsh

Other than a cream-crown Marsh Harrier nothing else of note there. c150 Tufted Ducks at Welton Waters on watersports pit. Best count I’ve had for a few years since they put dye in to the kill off the weed. The inevitable consequence is reduced food for wildfowl which are put off by the opaque water anyway. Also a few Mallard and Gadwall. Had a good look through the tuftie flock but found nothing else. Greater Scaup have been regular in the past and one record of Ring-necked Duck. Walked back along Common Lane. A few Goldcrest and a Chiffchaff were encouraging but failed with their rarer cousins.

10/10/15 Went to High Eske NR on Saturday morning. Good numbers of Wigeon, Mallard and Tufted Duck but nothing rarer amongst them. Looking through the large Greylag flock, including several white domestic geese and intermediates, thought I had a juvenile White-fronted Goose but lost track of it. Walked the path round the back looking out for passerines but never located a tit flock. A few Migrant Hawkers still. Headed for Leven Canal head but only a few Common Buzzards seen and a Little Egret by the river. Back at the reserve thought I had a Lesser Redpoll but flew out of view then I was distracted. A mass exist from the pit made me suspect Kayakers, who had caused me grief earlier this year, and was glad I was on my way off. Noticed eight geese circling on their own which looked and sounded different. At least one was clearly an Adult White-fronted Goose from the breast barring and the others were certainly not Greylags. Kept on them hoping they would land again or at least give up their identities. Eventually landed in the south east corner so rushed to check them before they were disturbed again. Passed a young couple fishing, presumably the cause of the disturbance. All the 400+ Greylags had returned so took a while to locate at least eight Eurasian White-fronted Geese, both adult and juveniles. Fortunately seemed settled and got a few pictures.

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White-fronted Geese are regular during winter at High Eske NR including earlier this year. Like Whooper Swan, which also winter regularly, though ones in October may just be passing through. Of interest a Tundra Bean Goose was just to the north at Watton NR, adjacent to Tophill Low NR with two Pink-footed Geese. Also a Great White Egret was seen flying south along the river at Tophill Low NR. Need Bean Goose and Great White Egret for High Eske NR.

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