With calm seas lately any spare morning I've had I've been scanning over Seaton Bay. This hasn't shown any more surprises since the trio of Eider, but it's always a joy to be out when there are sunrises like this to be witnessed...
Birdwise all I have seen is up to six Red-throated Diver, the odd Common Scoter, 90+ feeding Kittiwakes lingering (notable for us) and several hundred auks, of which so far all the ones I have been able to identify have been Razorbill.
My inability to competently identify (/string) a Guillemot brings me nicely on to species I should really have seen by now Guillemot and Mistle Thrush are top of the list, with Blackcap, Firecrest, Siskin and Marsh Tit not far behind. We don't seem to have a wintering Common Sandpiper on the Axe for this first time in at least 15 years, in fact aside Avocet wading bird variety and numbers have been poor - bring on the spring!
There's three key species I have missed; Little Gull, Marsh Harrier and Red Kite. Am not worried about the latter two, but Little Gull has become a less than annual visitor to the Axe so really need some more southerlies! This dip was even worse as I would have seen it were it not for a helicopter flushing the gull flock literally seconds before my arrival.
I won't list the highlights as they are in the contents of my recent blog posts, but something I do want to mention as a highlight is just how much I am enjoying participating in Patchwork Challenge. Exactly as I was hoping it would, it has given my patch birding a new lease of life, and as everyone knows being out more is the key to seeing more - and as a result I am blogging more!
Roll on the next 11 months...