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Saturday 18th November 2017

A Swallow heading south needs to get a move on if it is going to make it to Africa for the winter. A Lapland Bunting was flying around calling around 0820 hrs before drifting north. Also on site at least 3 Redwing, 3 Goldcrest, Fieldfare, Snow Bunting plus a handful of new Blackies.  Vis mig numbers dwindling with southbound 12 Goldfinch, 8 Siskin, 8 Starling, 7 Mipit & Skylark.Offshore movements still lamentable with just 3 Brent going each way plus a Great-crested Grebe south. At least 1,623 Cormorants went out fishing this morning and at least 4,000 seagulls, 17 Gannet & a Bonxie following the shipping. Common Gulls are almost non-existent so far this winter despite all the food available to the bigger gulls feeding offshore.

8 birds ringed: 3 Blackbird, 3 Goldfinch, 1 Goldcrest, 1 Greenfinch.

Friday 17th November 2017

A Great Northern Diver on the river out the back of the obs early on did a disappearing trick. Grounded migrants getting fewer & farther between as the autumn grinds to a halt. Some vis mig with southbound 15 Goldfinch, 4 Chaffinch, 3 Mipit & northbound 2 Siskin. From mid morning 330 Starling & 8 Skylark came in off the sea. On site 7 Brambling soon departed inland & a single Reed Bunting was heard but not seen. Still getting the odd new Goldcrest passing through although probably not for much longer.

The Chestnut is not a regular here despite being a common moth inland.

8 birds ringed: 3 Starling, 2 Blackbird, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Chaffinch, 1 Goldcrest.

Thursday 16th November 2017

A Long-eared Owl quartering along the bird observatory ridge pre dawn frustratingly could not be found perched up roosting post dawn. Vis mig consisted of southbound 17 Goldfinch, 6 Starling, 5 Chaffinch, 3 Skylark, 3 Mipits, 2 Rock Pipit & 2 Siskin. On site 35 Linnet, 25 Mipit, 12 Fieldfare, 5 Goldfinch, 4 Goldcrest, 3 Chaffinch, Stonechat, Reed Bunting & Woodcock were the highlights. Offshore still tedious unless one likes plenty of Cormorants & seagulls with the only thing of note being 20 Common Scoter north plus a handful of Gannets. I know the weather has been mild the last couple of days but Mrs Peregrine sitting on the nest platform at this time of the year is three months early to start thinking about that sort of malarkey.

Phyllonorycter messaniella is a tint tot that mines the Holm Oaks in vast numbers and only occasionally wanders the 10 yards from its host tree to the nearest moth trap (and never manages to wander the 40 to 50 yards into the other moth traps - some species are just stay at home critters !).

4 birds ringed: 2 Blackbird, 1 Redwing, 1 Meadow Pipit.

Wednesday 15th November 2017

Cormorant numbers heading out to sea are steadily increasing with 2,527 heading out this morning. They normally go out fairly early on but didn't go out until 0840 hrs which may be due to a combination of the murky conditions plus the tide time. Milder temperatures stimulated some vis mig with southbound 50 Chaffinch, 45 Goldfinch, 32 Siskin, 21 Starling, 8 Mipits, 5 Linnet & 2 Skylark. Slightly more migrants grounded on site with 25 Mipit plus a small handful of thrushes & finches including 2 Mistle Thrush that dropped in briefly. Offshore movements almost non-existent although 2 Eider went south before taking a right hand turn up the river and a Bonxie put in a brief appearance amongst the 4,000+ seagulls following the shipping.

"When I was a lad" White Point was listed in the literature of the time as a migrant. These days it obviously lives here but why it is still appearing this late in the year is open to conjecture.

9 birds ringed: 3 Redwing, 2 Blackbird, 2 Chaffinch, 1 Wood Pigeon, 1 Goldcrest.

Tuesday 14th November 2017

Turnstone on the point.

Early showers grounded migrating thrushes before dawn, which quickly dispersed once the damp weather lifted. Offshore a little Auk went North, a Pomarine Skua went South and eight Goosander went through. Noted on the reserve, 30 Blackbird, 14 Redwing, 8 Fieldfare, 2 Goldcrest, 2 Snipe, 1 Song Thrush, 1 Stonechat & 1 Turnstone. Offshore, 2,500 Herring Gull, 250 Greater Black-backed Gull, 20 Black-headed Gull & 8 Gannet.
Going North, 18 Common Scoter, 2 Brent Goose, 1 Guillemot, 1 Little Auk, 1 Shag & 1 Teal. Going out to sea East, 2393 Cormorant. Going South, 71 Dunlin, 42 Starling, 24 Brent Goose, 24 Common Scoter, 13 Meadow Pipit, 9 Knot, 9 Siskin, 8 Goldfinch, 6 Song Thrush, 5 Goosander, 4 Great Crested Grebe, 4 Red-breast Merganser, 4 Skylark, 3 Teal, 2 Pintail, 1 Pomarine Skua, 1 Shelduck & 1 Turnstone. Coming in off the sea going West, 19 Blackbird, 4 Starling, 3 Goosander & 1 Lapwing.

27 birds ringed: Blackbird 18, Redwing 6, Chaffinch 1, Fieldfare 1, Linnet 1.

Monday 13th November 2017

Common Redpoll at Landguard this morning.

A clear but Northwest breeze this morning, the Cormorant count going out to sea was over 2,000, a  Common Redpoll was the first for Landguard of the autumn and there was also a November Blackcap.
Noted on the reserve, 40 Starling, 35 Blackbird, 12 Robin, 7 Redwing, 3 Meadow Pipit, 2 Goldcrest, 2 Goldfinch, 2 Lesser Redpoll, 2 Snipe, 1 Blackcap, 1 Brambling, 1 Common Redpoll, 1 Fieldfare, 1 Great Skua, 1 Skylark, 1 Sparrowhawk, 1 Turnstone & 1 Woodcock.
Movement recorded, going North, 5 Brent Goose, 2 Mute Swan & 1 Mistle Thrush. Going out to sea East, 2290 Cormorant. Going South, 10 Common Scoter, 3 Brent Goose, 2 Goldfinch, 2 Skylark, 1 Gadwall, 1 Gannet, 1 Mallard & 1 Ringed Plover. Coming in off the sea going West, 4 Shelduck.

19 birds ringed: Blackbird 15, Blackcap 1, House Sparrow 1, Lesser Redpoll, Mealy/Common Redpoll 1.

Sunday 12th November 2017

Starting to look & feel like winter - just note the state of the blackberries the few remaining Linnets on site are taking the seeds from. Some vis mig this morning in the shape of southbound 113 Goldfinch, 35 Siskin, 23 Chaffinch, 11 Starling, 7 Mipits, 4 Linnet & a Skylark. Grounded migrants almost non-existent but did include a small handful of winter thrushes and both Snipe & Woodcock. Offshore grim but a solitary Shag did come round the point and up river.

5 birds ringed: 3 Blackbird, 1 Robin, 1 Goldfinch.