A week in Cornwall in October is enough to get a birder’s pulse racing. Last week we finally went on holiday there, with my brother and sister in law. There was a marked lack of migrants, and those that were around either eluded us, or left before we could get there. The seawatching was good though, with literally hundreds of shearwaters (Manx, Balearic and a few Sooty), 5 Leach’s Petrel, a lifer for me, Grey Phalaropes and two Sabine’s Gulls that are only our second UK view. Distant birds on a lumpy sea aren’t good for photographs, though.
Walks on the clifftops had many Choughs that started colonising in 2001 and have spread well from Lizard all the way to Land’s End and the north coast. They’re a devil to photograph, though, as they’re always changing direction in flight, and always hideously backlit. It doesn’t help that they’re laughing at you while tormenting you. Eventually some gave themselves up.