Today was my last ever lecture, so did not really want to miss it
That being said, when Mark Reeder tweeted that there were whooper swan, common scoter and kittiwake on Orgreave I was tempted to head straight down. I did not and made my way down after the lecture at around 11. The whoopers had already gone and when I arrived I saw that the kittiwake had also departed. I could not see the scoter on site, but I was informed they were still present only around the corner and sleeping.
I walked round and confirmed as such. They did not look like waking up at any point but after a short while they suddenly awoke into action, chasing each other and swimming around, although not fishing I noticed. They flew around once and I wondered if they were going to leave, as the fog that had lingered all morning had begun to clear, but they landed again and when I left they had gone back to sleep. Its the best view I have ever had of Common Scoter and its the first time I have seen them inland. Also, its a patch and yeartick, what a start to the day.
I imagined that the whoopers already leaving was my lot for that species on my patch list. In the fog I thought I heard a whooper calling, but I could not see anything. A few seconds later I swear I heard it again and looked up to see a nice flock of 11 Whooper Swans going north. It was a surprise, but I managed to rattle off a few shots for record purposes. Sadly they had already passed me when I got the shot but they do so far as I'm concerned.
So despite looking like a swing and a miss at first I did get 2 of the 3 potential patch ticks. Kittiwake is possible during the rest of the year, and the two that I got I am more than happy with. What a morning it turned out to be in the end.
Orgreave Lakes: Robin, Blackbird, House Sparrow, Goldfinch, Woodpigeon, Black-headed Gull, Wren, Mallard, Magpie, Reed Bunting, Skylark, Carrion Crow, Long-tailed Tit, Blue Tit, Lapwing, Siskin, Meadow Pipit, Redshank, Ringed Plover, Oystercatcher, Wigeon, Gadwall, Canada Goose, Mute Swan, Pied Wagtail, Coot, Herring Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Pochard, Common Scoter, Tufted Duck, Common Teal, Goosander, Cormorant, Whooper Swan, Starling, Grey Heron, Great-crested Grebe, Linnet,