Back local

There’s not been much excitement bird-wise around us of late.  A few walks around Sompting Brooks have found some Snipe and a few other birds, and it has been very quiet on the Downs.  Today, though, there were Ring Ouzels at Cissbury, one of which gave brief and fairly distant views, and a Dartford Warbler.  Hope it overwinters again.

Sussex 211023-001
Ravens drop into Sompting Brooks
Sussex 211023-002
Sussex 211023-003
Dartford Warbler on Cissbury Ring

Choughs and Chiff

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.

Cornwall 211010a-001
St. Michael's Mount all lit up from just outside our beautiful apartment
Cornwall 211010a-002
Sennen Cove
Cornwall 211010a-003
Gwennap Head
Cornwall 211010a-004
Land's End
Cornwall 211010-001
Cornwall 211010-006