Friday, 5 June 2015

Spurn Weekend Day 1

Having some time off is lovely. I spent the last week patching Orgreave and off twitching, but for the weekend I decided to make my first visit of the year to Spurn, which has been long overdue. I arrived back from the greater-legs at 2.00 in the morning so allowed myself a lie in to recover fully before setting off for Spurn at around lunchtime. Pete had set off on the Wednesday before I had contacted him and as such I was travelling by public transport again.
I arrived in Patrington after 4.00 before Paul picked me up and took me the rest of the way. On the way I received the outstanding news that the Red-Necked Phalarope, which had not been seen since Tuesday, had reappeared on Holderness field. So when I arrived that was where I first went.
Paul had described the exact pool to me but I still could not pick it up. I went via Beacon Lane but neither of the first pools I came to had the bird on them. However, on the final pool I connected with it. The RNP was swimming around the pool, which was around 50 meters away. I grabbed a few record digiscoped shots but the bird was distant.
It was a stunning looking bird. The only other phalarope I have ever seen was a grey, but my views of that were distant and brief, so to see one like this, swimming around the pond not too far away was a real treat. Add to the fact that this was a summer plumaged bird and you really have got it all. I was later told that it only had one leg, so I guess it does not really have it all, but it seemed active and healthy enough...
Of course phalaropes are incredibly dainty and small birds, and I got a nice record shot of it alongside a female Pied Wagtail giving a really nice example of just how small they are, what super birds!
-Red-Necked Phalarope and Pied Wagtail
Whilst I was there Pete text me letting me know there was a Bee-Eater at Kilnsea wetlands, so I ran the short distance along to see if I could see it. The bird had obviously moved on and the wetlands themselves were very quiet but I did spot a pair of Gadwall on there, which is a Spurn tick for me.
-Red Necked Phalarope
The bird then moved across to the other end of the pond. We followed it round but this meant the light was ideal for photos so I got out the DSLR and started using that to take photos. I'm not a massive fan of my SLR as it never seems to get pin sharp focus, but having said that my efforts for these were not too shabby. 
-Red-Necked Phalarope
The bird then flew off to the far end of the pond again but I decided I had taken enough. Being so close to a bird like that was phenomenal and I have to say that this was possibly the second best birding experience I have had this year after the harlequin duck. What a beautiful bird.
It was getting towards late evening now so I headed back to the warren via Beacon Lane. On my way down I found a couple of Lesser Whitethroats in the bushes. They were impossible to photograph as they only came out into the open for a couple of seconds at a time. It was another yeartick for me, keeping the ball rolling.
What a way to start the weekend, with a lifer, and an incredibly showy and photogenic one at that. What a super bird.

Species List:
Numpties Watchpoint: Sandwich Tern, Little Tern, Swift, Swallow, Gannet, Magpie, Carrion Crow, House Martin, Great Black-Backed Gull, House Sparrow, Meadow Pipit, Skylark,
Beacon Lane: Great Tit, Blue Tit, Whitethroat, Lesser Whitethroat, Magpie, Dunnock, Robin, Wren, Starling, Woodpigeon, Swallow, 
Holderness Field and Kilnsea Wetlands: Linnet, Yellow Wagtail, Pied Wagtail, Gadwall, Avocet, Little Tern, Shelduck, Red-Necked Phalarope, Mute Swan, Sandwich Tern, Oystercatcher, Little Egret, Swift, Swallow, House Martin, 

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