Tuesday, July 29, 2008

20th-22nd July, 2008.

An overnight drive on the 19th/20th saw me opposite Coquet Island in Northumberland at dawn hoping to see Roseate Tern, which I didn't, as I hadn't reckoned on a blistering sunrise that put everything in silhouette! No matter, an early returning Whimbrel and an Arctic Skua moving south were of interest. As usual Puffins were much in evidence but worrying reports are emerging from the Farne Islands, further to the north, that the population there this year is much reduced.

Pressed on to North Yorkshire to the raptor watchpoint at Wykeham. After five and a half hours of waiting excellent views of a Honey Buzzard hunting over the opposite side of the valley more than recompensed the wait, particularly when a female Goshawk also arrived in the area with what looked like a rabbit. A couple of Crossbills added further value!!

On Monday (21st)searches in my past local area for both Pied Flycatcher and Willow Tit proved fruitless and, in the latter's case, prompted thoughts that the population is not doing at all well. Compensation came in the form of a Pectoral Sandpiper at Edderthorpe Flash seen in soaring temperatures beyond what I'm currently used to on Islay!!!

Tuesday saw me on my way down to Thetford, Norfolk on another hot day. Views of Stone Curlew in the evening at the Weeting Heath reserve plus celebratory fish and chips to follow.

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