Follow in Nigel's Footsteps

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Christmas break...

Well, things have been a bit quiet for me over the Christmas holiday. Plenty of R 'n' R with the family, which is great and how it should be. I managed to get them all down to Lyme Regis for a walk on the 27th December - an opportunity for me to check out the Purple Sandpipers for the first time this winter too. Haven't noticed any reports of them this year and was beginning to wonder if any had been seen but a walk along the Cobb Wall soon put that concern to rest as I found ten birds huddled just under the top of the wall.

Purple Sandpipers: R. Harris
Purple Sandpipers: R. Harris
9 of the 10 Purple Sandpipers: R. Harris
No sign of any Black Redstarts around the usual places in the town though, only a handful of Rock Pipits and a Grey Wagtail near the river mouth.

Grey Wagtail: R. Harris
My father-in-law suggested going out again today as he fancied getting some fresh air so naturally I suggested a drive down to south Devon for my annual Cirl Bunting trip. They didn't disappoint either with 20-25 birds present along with a couple of reed buntings - despite a brisk, cold, easterly wind.

Cirl Bunting, male: R. Harris
Cirl Bunting, male: R. Harris
Cirl Bunting, male: R. Harris
Always impressive birds to see.

Didn't connect with the Yellow-browed Warbler, Firecrest or Sibe Chiff that have been around recently but neither had anyone else I met so I didn't feel to bad about that. A brief sea watch produced a single drake Velvet Scoter, a red-throated diver and a few gannets drifting through the bay but little else. Great afternoon to be out and about though.

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