Friday, 11 December 2015
This is the UK400 Club Rare Bird Alert for Week Ending Friday 11 December 2015....
The adult PACIFIC DIVER, still in partial summer plumage, continues in Penzance Harbour (Cornwall), ranging between Penzance Harbour (off Jubilee Pool) and St Michael's Mount but is mobile & elusive. Beware of 1-2 adult Black-throated Divers in same area too, with 3 Great Northern Divers. Low tide and calm conditions are preferable when searching for this wintering bird.
Over 25 displaced juvenile Great Northern Divers continue inland (including 5 on Draycote Water & 2 on Farmoor Reservoirs), with a Black-throated Diver inland on one of the private fishing pits at Blashford Lakes HWT, north of Ringwood (Hants). It has been a good December for Red-necked Grebes, with twitchable birds in North Norfolk in Blakeney Harbour & Brancaster Staithe, while inland birds remain at Alton Water (Suffolk) (from the Holbrook Hide), Rutland Water (Leics) (in the North Arm) and at Farmoor Reservoirs (Oxfordshire).
A BLACK-BROWED ALBATROSS was sighted 1.5 miles north of Castlegregory (Co. Kerry) on 8th, sat on the sea at Sandy Bay at 3.50pm, while several juvenile European Shags still remain inland.
In County Cork, the first-winter AMERICAN BITTERN continues at Castlefreke Lake, Owenahincha, but is often elusive and out of view from the adjacent road, while a CATTLE EGRET performed well today with cattle opposite Lound Cottages, SW of Sea Palling (Norfolk) by the Hickling Road at TG 417 262. Up to 3 CATTLE EGRETS still remain in South Devon in the Teigngrace area, while 30 or so Great White Egrets continue to overwinter, including one far to the northwest on Barra (Outer Hebrides). A GLOSSY IBIS remains on the Pett Levels (East Sussex) but is elusive in roadside ditches, while up to 34 Eurasian Spoonbills are wintering in Poole Harbour (Dorset).
The regular white morph adult SNOW GOOSE has most recently been seen at Cardurnock (Cumbria) with Barnacle Geese, with several small flocks of Greenland White-fronted Geese out of range, including up to 9 at Slimbridge WWT (Gloucs). The neck-collared Lesser White-fronted Goose of Norwegian origin remains on Shetland with 22 Taiga Bean Geese still on the Cantley Marshes in Norfolk's Yare Valley and a singleton with Greylag Geese at Seaton, near Grove Ferry (Kent). Three RICHARDSON'S CACKLING GEESE remain on Islay (Argyll) with wintering Barnacle Geese, as does a single TODD'S CANADA GOOSE at Lissadell (Co. Mayo). Around 12 Black Brants are wintering, with at least 3 in north Norfolk and 2 in Dorset, but once again, Red-breasted Goose is absent other than known non-naturalised individuals. A 'new' first-winter drake AMERICAN WIGEON was at Bowling Green Marsh, Topsham (Devon) today, while up to 9 North American Green-winged Teals are to be found, Ferruginous Ducks of rather dubious origin at Dinton Pastures Country Park, Winnersh (Berkshire) and Kingfisher Lake, Blashford GP (Hants), the two first-winter RING-NECKED DUCKS at Rooksbury Mill LNR, Andover (Hants) and adult drakes at Bray Lake, Maidenhead (Berks) & near Pitlochry (Perthshire), the drake LESSER SCAUP at Chew Valley Lake (Avon) and several in Ireland including 2 on Lough Gill, the adult drake SURF SCOTER off Joppa (Lothian) and a small number of Smew scattered about.
The juvenile PALLID HARRIER continues to perform daily over the saltmarsh and sueda at the extreme south end of Snettisham RSPB reserve (Norfolk) (accessed from the car park in village and a walk of over five miles in total), while perhaps 8 juvenile ROUGH-LEGGED BUZZARDS remain, including 3 in farmland to the south of the Choseley Drying Barns near Titchwell (Norfolk) and a singleton at Frinton Golf Course (Essex).
The juvenile SPOTTED SANDPIPER was still present at Pilmore Strand, Youghal (Co. Cork) until at least 7th, while the GREATER YELLOWLEGS remains on the Isle of Wight on the River Medina and both juvenile LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS remain, at Cresswell Pond (Northumberland) and Pennington Marshes' Jetty Lagoon (Hants) respectively. Both GREY PHALAROPES continue to entertain in the NW corner of Farmoor 1 Reservoir (Oxon) with others elsewhere at Stevenston Point, Ayr (Ayrshire) and off Crymlyn Burrows (South Wales) on 11th.
The usual adult BONAPARTE'S GULL is at Dawlish Warren NNR (South Devon) but erratic in its appearances, while it looks as though our longest-staying Ring-billed Gull at Walpole Park Lake, Gosport, is not coming back this winter. At least 8 of the latter are wintering in Ireland, while the adult survives in Dingwall (Highland) and a first-winter is near Sancreed (Cornwall). Large numbers of Caspian Gulls are being seen, including up to 11 at Minsmere RSPB (Suffolk) and 9 at Dungeness (Kent), with the 3rd-winter SMITHSONIAN'S GULL still with Herring Gulls in fields at Jericho Farm, St Just (Cornwall) but elusive. A small number of Glaucous & Iceland Gulls are being reported, a juvenile of the latter at the Fisher Fleet, King's Lynn (Norfolk) being particularly popular. A BRUNNICH'S GUILLEMOT was photographed on the sea at South Gare (Cleveland) on 9th but was not seen again after it was attacked by a Great Black-backed Gull.
The RUFOUS TURTLE DOVE remained in Ladysmith Road, Scalloway (Shetland) until 8th, with an extremely late first-winter Common Swift in Margate (Kent) on 6th-8th. An overwintering HOOPOE continues near Kingswinford (Staffs), west of Wall Heath in the landscaped quarry off of Enville Road at DY6 0BP, while wintering SHORE LARKS include 3 in Thornham Harbour (Norfolk) and 1-2 in Teesmouth (Cleveland), one of which was seen at North Gare today.
A BLACK-BELLIED DIPPER was seen on the River Glaven at Natural Surroundings, Glandford (Norfolk) today, with a few BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS about, including 10 on the Lang Stracht in Aberdeen, 3 in Jarrow (Tyneside) and 5 at Gateshead (Tyneside).
A BARRED WARBLER continues to visit fat feeders and peanuts between Thorntonloch & Torness (Lothian), with an elusive DUSKY WARBLER at Atherington Pools, Climping (West Sussex) and a YELLOW-BROWED WARBLER at Broadsands Ley (Devon). Up to 3 PENDULINE TITS have been present at Titchfield Haven NNR (Hants) since 8th, best located from the reserve's West Hide.
For further details or to provide additional information, contact Lee Evans on LGREUK400@aol.com