Sunday, 23 October 2011

East coast migrants due tomorrow...

Well that's what the weather charts are saying. I birded at Torness this morning. The only obvious migrant landbirds appeared to be a sprinkling of Robins along the foreshore. I have never been confident that I am able to tell the difference between continental and local Robins. So this bird could have arrived from across the North Sea, or not... Only other migrant passerine was what may have been a (lapland?) bunting, but it flew through without calling. Always exciting to watch something coming 'in off' even when no ID is possible.

Seawatching was more productive with a single juv Long-tailed Skua heading north, the only identifiable skua out of around a dozen. Not a close view (as seems to have been my luck with skuas this season), but its Kittiwake-size, tern-like flight action and dithering progress all classic jizz for this species. Also offshore at least 3 Little Gulls in among the Kittiwakes, a Manx Shearwater heading south and a couple of Puffins on the sea. Diver movements were poor with just three Red-throated Divers seen in 2 hours (one shown below).

Finally some raptor action as I popped into Barns Ness on the way home - a nice adult Common Buzzard being mobbed by a pair of Kestrels.

Note the newly growing primary coming through on the bird's left wing. Also two different ages of secondaries visible. Nice solid terminal tail band on this bird.

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